Help! My 3-week-old "Insta-Flock" has problems all of a sudden!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by MaryLovesChickens, Aug 11, 2010.

  1. MaryLovesChickens

    MaryLovesChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 9, 2010
    North Florida
    Hello Wonderful Chicken Geniuses!
    Everyday because of you all, I learn more and more about these wonderful chickens...and after reading your posts, I am hoping you can tell me what to do.

    Here's our situation: we have an 9-chicken mixed breed flock all brought together from different homes in one day: 2 RIRs, 2 polish hens (one of them is clearly the boss of everyone at five months), 2 cochin/americauna mixes, 3 silkies. All are "approximately" 4 to 5 months old except for "Priscilla" who is our six-week old sable-colored silkie and Brunhilda, a really, feathers missing, ugly sister hen to Donatella, both of them Polish hens, who are "older but not laying" according to the woman we bought her from. None are laying yet. They have been on EMC and just now were switched to scratch and layer feed. The day we brought them home, I penned them together but separated by chicken wire in our backyard since they didn't really know each other. But that same afternoon, a couple of them "broke out" of the pen I made and then later all the others got free too (amazing how they squeezed out to be with the other stranger chickens!) well, they have been happily roaming the yard freely ever since--no problems...well, the RIRs don't really socialize with the other six, they remain aloof. That was two weeks ago. Yesterday, I find Brunhilda DEAD, inside the coop (where they all sleep at night) with poor, tiny Priscilla huddled next to her, away from the flock and her eye is slightly swollen shut with a golden crusty grossness around it. We are brokenhearted! Brunhilda was ugly and clearly had been beaten up in her previous home but we thought she was happy here. Donatella, the boss hen, was her sister and it seems Brunhilda was fine. No blood, nothing broken, she was supple (no rigor mortis). Don't know how she died. And poor Priscilla, someone really roughed her up! We just don't know who...what do we do now? She's all alone now, safely in her own HUGE screened in porch away from the others. Can I put neosporin on her little eye? I wiped it off with a warm cloth and it opened right up but this morning there was more golden, clear goop...and she looks sad to be all alone! I don't want her to be alone and I've read that they are not solitary creatures...should I put her in her own crate right in the middle of their coop, main hang out area next to the water for a few weeks? Or are they attacking her because she's sick?

    Please help! We love little Priscilla but the remaining chickens: Donatella, Mischa, Gigi, Marie Antoinette, Buffy, Lena and Lola might really hurt her or worse kill her!

    Awaiting your reply...oh and by the way, we had a entire other flock (4 roosters and three hens, easter eggers, who knew!?!?) last year, brought together from multiple, different hatchings, and not knowing anything at all then, just raised them all together with absolutely no problems, other than the big major pecking order fight, and then it was over, and everyone towed the line...so with all hens, we thought it would be even easier to raise them...
     
  2. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

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    Gosh Mary. You have really floored me with this post.

    Yes, separate the hen until she heals. Then reintroduce her very slowly and carefully.

    BUT..... you have broken every single rule of quarantine, so you may be dealing with disease and injuries combined. If it IS disease, you should not sell/give away any birds, nor bring in a more.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=12751

    Frequently, chickens will kill a sick flockmate. Another issue to consider.

    I would suggest you do a lot of reading in the Learning Center, found above in the center of the page.



    Just out of curiosity, what happened to these birds?

    "oh and by the way, we had a entire other flock (4 roosters and three hens, easter eggers, who knew!?!?) last year, brought together from multiple, different hatchings, and not knowing anything at all then, just raised them all together with absolutely no problems, other than the big major pecking order fight, and then it was over, and everyone towed the line...so with all hens, we thought it would be even easier to raise them..."
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2010
  3. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Overrun With Chickens

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    Jun 17, 2009
    Oklahoma
    My Coop
    I have to agree with Ranchhand, you have broken all the rules of quarantine. Chicken wire separating birds is not quarantine and will not prevent any illnesses/diseases.

    They must be quarantined for a minimum of 21 days, but 30 is better and recommended.

    Do you have the means to have the sick chick tested? If not, I would recommend that you cull it now. Even if you get it well it could be a carrier of whatever it has. It will infect the remaining flock.

    I think you can have a necropsy done for free in most states. I would check into that.

    Also, I would recommend not buying from several breeders at the same time. It takes a lot of space to quarantine, and they need to be many many feet away from each other. Several illnesses are spread by air and not just bird to bird contact.

    Tylan50 is used often by several members. You can also put one drop directly in the eye twice a day. You can use it undiluted or you can dilute it 1:4 ratio with Saline.

    I hear Water Soluable Tylan is an excellent antibiotic but it's about $50-60 for 100g.

    Duramycin-10 can be used for CRD Air Sac Disease (Chronic Respiratory Disease) usually caused by MG (Mycoplasma Gallisepticum and Escherichia Coli. It contains Tetracycline. It is also used for Infectious Synovitis caused by Mycoplasma Synoviae. You use this for 7-14 days.

    Duramycin-72 contains Oxytetracycline (this is an injectable antibiotic) but is used to treat basically the same things.

    But, my recommendations before using any of these would be to get a Vet to test the goop in the chicks eye first. They may be able to tell you what it is.
     
  4. MaryLovesChickens

    MaryLovesChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 9, 2010
    North Florida
    Thank you for your replies. Just to clarify, how we ended up like this. We were going to just "foster" all these hens and then decided to keep them after a couple of days. 'But yes, they came from three different family farms in which the previous owners were giving away their flocks because of 1) divorce 2) relocation out of state and 3) bankruptcy...but now I see how it wrong it was to combine them (I didn't even think about diseases to be honest) but they were all so well taken care of...I guess that doesn't matter.

    The former flock we had (the 4 Roos and 2 hens--they were my parents' but my father passed away, my mom was bereft, and at the time I lived in a condo) are all alive and well and living with a huge flock of more than 70 birds on a farm in southern Georgia. And, they free range on FIVE Acres. The very nice husband and wife who took them in commented the day we left them that it had been years since she'd seen a flock with NO lice!!! Those kids were very healthy...
     
  5. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    I agree with the others as far as putting together new birds without quarentine. They more than likely died of an illness that they contracted from one of the other birds. A bird can look and act perfectly healthy but be a carrier of an illness that they pass on to other birds.
     

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