Help-Turkey with crusty yellow scabs on abdomen-- what could this be??

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by luckyclucker, Apr 9, 2011.

  1. luckyclucker

    luckyclucker Out Of The Brooder

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    I recently adopted a 2 year old white midget male turkey. Today I was dealing with an out of control NFM situation in the coop and decided to check the turkeys, too. All 5 of my turkeys are rescues and at least several years old. 3 of them were abused and very hard to get my hands on when the dusting was going on. My Midget White, Wikkus, is a snuggler, so I was able to rub the permethrin dust all over him (they live with my chickens, so I figure everyone has some mites).

    So, my questions-- what could all these yellow scabs be on his underside? I saw some mites on him, so I know he has them. These are not the Red Mites, although I wouldn't rule that out, either.
    2nd question-- any ideas on how I can treat the turkeys who won't let me grab them? And how does a person effectively cover them with dusting powder?

    Has anybody had a successful NFM story? I used the .25 permethrin (prozap) today, and I've cleaned and DE'd their coops. Any ideas for stuff to use to clean their coops? I didn't have any liquid pesticide or cleaner, so I just thought I'd start with the DE and prozap and then do some more cleaning over the next few days, before their second dusting.

    I am very eager to hear of ANY successful mite treatment plans. This is the first time I've ever seen this and I'm a bit freaked out. I know I've been very, very stupid to be rescuing all of these animals and throwing them together. I will be imposing a strict quarantine on the next birds I get. How long is the typical quarantine period?
     
  2. Msbear

    Msbear Fancy Banties

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    QT periods vary person to person... some say 2 weeks is plenty.. others no less than 30 days. Me... ah, I give 'em a good lookin' over and toss 'em in [​IMG] I've also only purchased new birds from friends of mine so, I know where they're coming from. It's true they could still be carriers of some mycroplasma or something but, hey! you only live once... or the chicken only lives one [​IMG]

    Anyway, the yellow scabs are the reminents of the mite infestation. Once they are treated, the flakes will come off revealing healthy new skin. Treat in another 10 days to poison hatched mites. maybe treat in another 10 days if they're heavily infested. I use 7 dust as it's the only thing that REALLY works.. that and permeritherin (sp?)

    Good luck!
     
  3. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    If dusting is going to be the exclusive treatment and there is a whole lot of flapping going on please be sure to wear a N-95 rated mask. The tough one's to get a hold of might be more easily dosed with either Adams tick and flea spray, or Ivermectin cattle pour-on (10lb bird ~1.5cc squirted on upper back between wings). Only time we had to deal with bad NFM (neighbor's chooks) infestation the cleaning out of coop stopped just short of burning it down (scrubbed out/interior sprayed down with combination of Ivermectin, and tea tree oil - can't use TTO directly on fowl but kills the heck out of NFM on surfaces/joints-seams), coop floor was covered in a 4:1 sand to DE mix with just enough wood chips/straw over that to keep them from choking. Still took about two weeks for birds to start perking up (primary treatment on chooks was .5-1cc topically per bird repeated once after 10 days).

    Check the extent, location and pattern of yellow `scabbing'. Could be from mites, but if only present on lower breast/abdomen area where the guy would place most of wt. if having had to spend time in filthy conditions with no place to roost - could be sequelae of pressure sores/contact dematitis-infection (usually seen in BB's).

    Here's to a sudden death to all ectoparasitic vermin.
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2011
  4. luckyclucker

    luckyclucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you so much for your kind response. I called the woman who gave me the turkey with the scabs and asked her what she used to treat mites-- she said she had never had them. But that said, he does have the oodles of yellow scabs on him, and his feathering where the scabs are looks scant. I wonder if she DID try and treat him with something.

    I have been dumb about no QT, but it is so hard to do when people just drive up with a couple of turkeys in a box. We have 4 acres but not endless amounts of coop and protected area. And I really wonder about turkeys, with all that exposed skin I feel like I can't leave them unprotected in the cold (supposed to be 25 tonight, 17 tomorrow and it's April, for Pete's sake!!).

    I will be spraying their coop and then either dusting again and/or bathing them in a few days (again, some people on this site say 4-5 with permethrin, some say 14 days. THERE IS SO MUCH CONFLICTING INFO!!!) Tonight I get to go out and grab the two turkey hens who cannot be caught during waking hours. I am working up to it, fortifying myself with wine and potato chips.....
     
  5. luckyclucker

    luckyclucker Out Of The Brooder

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    My thanks to you, Ivan3! I'm still up researching, many hours later. After today's initial dusting I feel like I might have bought 24 hours to figure stuff out. I don't think I've had enough wine to go out and dust the 2 feral turkeys. Our current, updated plan is to catch them with a blanket tomorrow and spray them with Adams Flea and Tick mist, which is available locally. I can also get some sevin, even though it really really kills me to use the junk. I think I will be bathing a bunch of the chickens, just because it really seems like a thorough approach. I can probably bathe the two toms as they are constantly trying to climb into my lap, anyhow. The feral turkey hens will probably have to just do with as serious dusting/misting as I can inflict. I've read repeatedly that you should use a staggered approach: products like sevin alternating with permethrin-based dusts like Prozap. It also seems like I can use the Adams products (shampoo and mist) in conjunction, or directly before, either of these products.

    I have oodles and oodles of straw around the place and that is really going to be the big pain. I can't burn it, too darn windy and dry here in Northern New Mexico. I'm thinking I'll just move it all across the property to a spot about 2 acres away and therefor removed from the birds.

    You mentioned that you use wood shavings-- what do you do with the dirty shavings? That is one of my biggest issues, all of the dirty bedding the birds generate. I had been using the old straw on all the gardens as well as composting some of it, but now I feel like it should be removed completely from the area. Can you compost your pine shavings? Why not, I guess.

    I was also thrilled to read elsewhere on this site that you can make a dust bath using wood ashes (with some DE and sand?). We have 11 fireplaces here, so that would be A GREAT use of all those ashes (yes, 11 fireplaces. Lately my time is pretty much split between cleaning chicken butt and emptying fireplaces....)

    I also appreciate your insights into my tom's "scab issues." I guess that is something I will have to examine more closely tomorrow. Yay....

    Thank you for your excellent info.
     
  6. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    All fouled bedding (straw/wood chips) is used around plants after being composted to a point. Just keep bedding to a minimum until you're satisfied that you're clear of the NFM's (do you feel the `volunteers' making their way up your body. moving towards the crown of your head, after handling the turks?). NFM's won't chomp on humans as a rule, but they do wander away from their hosts and take detours... If you have an outdoor firepit just burn the used bedding while you're treating. I always check our Slate tom as he doesn't roost (sleeping on bedding/ground he's something of the canary in the coal mine).

    NFMs are, if your birds are otherwise healthy, are handled/examined every week or so, bedding is rotated out and dust baths are provided (clean wood ash is excellent) are more of a low grade, intermittent, nuisance (can show up any time an infested wild bird nest falls from a tree).

    A few tools to simplify exam/ID:
    [​IMG]
     
  7. luckyclucker

    luckyclucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for the visual on the volunteer mites, but you were too late, I've already imagined the worst.

    One last dumb question: I have a HUGE enclosure for the chickens/turkeys. They have two coops, a straw bale "day house" where they hang out to stay out of the wind, my compost pile is in one part of the yard, so is a huge leaf/straw pile where stuff is slowly composting, my wood pile, and a dug in 1 foot deep, completely enclosed 10X40 ft "safety corridor" that is attached to one of the coops. How much of this outdoor area do I need to treat to be safe. The entire area is probably close to 1/3-1/2 acre that the birds have access to.

    If I just get rid of the bale house, the straw in the coops, spray and dust the coops, and remove any piles of loose straw in the yard do you think that would be sufficient? I've already started hauling loose straw off to a part of the yard the chickens don't frequent, but some of the old outdoor litter-straw is DEEP.

    Any input is greatly appreciated.
     
  8. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    luckyclucker wrote: One last dumb question: I have a HUGE enclosure for the chickens/turkeys. They have two coops, a straw bale "day house" where they hang out to stay out of the wind, my compost pile is in one part of the yard, so is a huge leaf/straw pile where stuff is slowly composting, my wood pile, and a dug in 1 foot deep, completely enclosed 10X40 ft "safety corridor" that is attached to one of the coops. How much of this outdoor area do I need to treat to be safe. The entire area is probably close to 1/3-1/2 acre that the birds have access to.

    NFM can only survive for, at MOST, about a month off of hosts. As long as the birds are being treated and examined I'd not worry about occasional `hang-outs'. Treat and repeat as needed. DE/Sevin mixed in sand under nesting/`roosting' bedding should do the job to suppress the devils, if birds are otherwise healthy and have access to the wood ash/DE bathing areas. Covering fresh composting material with chicken wire will keep them from digging through it.

    Just some more specific info.for reference:

    http://ucanr.org/freepubs/docs/8162.pdf
    http://www.entomology.cornell.edu/cals/entomology/extension/vet/aid/chicken/nfmite.cfm

    General references for the hypochondriacal, and for the forewarned is forearmed set:

    http://www.nwhc.usgs.gov/publications/field_manual/
    http://www.avianmedicine.net/ampa.html

    ed:sp​
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2011
  9. luckyclucker

    luckyclucker Out Of The Brooder

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    I've got the ultimate solution- we're building a new coop on the opposite side of the 4 acres. Yes, at first this may seem extreme, but I'm thinking a single, stationary coop is too susceptible to parasitic build up. Also, since I've only acquired the turkeys fairly recently I've noticed the amount of manure they are producing is alarming. I've also noticed that it is getting harder and harder to get the grass to grow in their current coop area. They need a larger area, and the new coop site is 2.5 acres of 8 ft fencing buried 8 inches in the ground.

    When these guys are all clean, I'll move them to the new place and let them have a second "vacation coop" for the spring and summer and move them back to the old coop in the fall.

    On another note, I worked up enough courage last night to grab and dust those two feral turkey hens. They tore clothing, tore gloves, and covered all three of us in Prozap. I was gloved and masked, but it was still a horrifying experience.

    I had read the two articles on fowl pests but not other two hysteria-inducing articles (the last thing I need is more ammo after finding a mite on my forearm yesterday). At this stressed-out point in time I don't even want to think about what my geese and ducks (who are in the yard where I'm putting the new coop) may be in for as far as pests go. Luckily I saw they weren't susceptible to NFM.

    Have you ever bathed any of your birds? Last night I did two chickens who had the worst infestations-- my roo and a white leghorn hen. They LOVED the bath. It was just plain weird. They spread out their wings and lounged on their sides and never squirmed or struggled. They refused the blow dryer treatment and had to spend the night in a boiler room off the back of the house. At 3 am the rooster started crowing and it came through several rooms like he was using a bull horn. I grabbed him and he was still damp, so I trudged him out to the other boiler room at the other side of the house. It is made of adobe brick and let me tell you, you CANNOT hear crowing through adobe. I think there may be a fortune to made in adobe chicken coops....
     
  10. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    luckyclucker wrote:

    I've got the ultimate solution- we're building a new coop on the opposite side of the 4 acres. Yes, at first this may seem extreme, but I'm thinking a single, stationary coop is too susceptible to parasitic build up. Also, since I've only acquired the turkeys fairly recently I've noticed the amount of manure they are producing is alarming. I've also noticed that it is getting harder and harder to get the grass to grow in their current coop area. They need a larger area, and the new coop site is 2.5 acres of 8 ft fencing buried 8 inches in the ground.

    When these guys are all clean, I'll move them to the new place and let them have a second "vacation coop" for the spring and summer and move them back to the old coop in the fall.

    On another note, I worked up enough courage last night to grab and dust those two feral turkey hens. They tore clothing, tore gloves, and covered all three of us in Prozap. I was gloved and masked, but it was still a horrifying experience.

    I had read the two articles on fowl pests but not other two hysteria-inducing articles (the last thing I need is more ammo after finding a mite on my forearm yesterday). At this stressed-out point in time I don't even want to think about what my geese and ducks (who are in the yard where I'm putting the new coop) may be in for as far as pests go. Luckily I saw they weren't susceptible to NFM.

    Have you ever bathed any of your birds? Last night I did two chickens who had the worst infestations-- my roo and a white leghorn hen. They LOVED the bath. It was just plain weird. They spread out their wings and lounged on their sides and never squirmed or struggled. They refused the blow dryer treatment and had to spend the night in a boiler room off the back of the house. At 3 am the rooster started crowing and it came through several rooms like he was using a bull horn. I grabbed him and he was still damp, so I trudged him out to the other boiler room at the other side of the house. It is made of adobe brick and let me tell you, you CANNOT hear crowing through adobe. I think there may be a fortune to made in adobe chicken coops....

    I'd kill `em by ODing them and the NFM's with Ivermectin pour-on before I'd tangle with feral turkey dusting (you're a tougher bird than I). Since you mentioned your roo (NFM's will often show up first on roosters as, apparently, the NFM's prefer the skin at the base of roo butt feather shafts rather than hen fluff around the fundament FYI). A `modular' adobe coop design might fly (isn't there a recipe for `adobo/adobe chicken'?). The last two links are to a full length textbook (avian medicine: principles and applications) and 300+ page Manual (USGS/FWS Field Manual of Wildlife diseases/avian) lots of useful color photos. Good luck on the building project (if turkeys are going to have a run you might consider sand (easy to rake out poop). Sounds like you should relax, the turks are in good hands and the NFM's won't drink too much, if any, of your blood.​
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2011

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