Help, We've made a huge mistake!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by mabsdb7, Oct 15, 2013.

  1. mabsdb7

    mabsdb7 Hatching

    Oct 15, 2013
    I need some advice. We are new to owning chickens and so we live and learn. The situation is this...we have some lovely free range chickens around our house that we've only had for a few months. One rooster and 4 hens, only two laying so far. We bought 4 more young hens at auction (not laying yet) and they are still away from the others for a month until we know they are healthy and safe. We got unfortunately anxious for more eggs now and lost all good judgement... Long story short, we now also have 30 supposedly 15 month old laying Rhode Island Reds who are molting or starting to molt and thier beaks have been trimmed which means they were in some type of confinement. They smell from being confined. They are far away from our other chickens in a field, however they are near other animals like geese and goats. In reality I have no idea where these chickens originally have come from. We got them from someone who just got them. Have I contaminated our farm? Can I cleanse these birds with time and care and feel safe about eventually eating these eggs? What should I do with these poor chickens?


  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Potentially a problem but I wouldn't worry too much.
    Just take good care of them, feed and water well and all will be well over time.
  3. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Crowing

    Oh my goodness, 30 of them! You must want a LOT of eggs!

    But your concerns are valid and I'd be concerned, especially with no background on these birds. The smell could be due to poor quality confinement or it could be due to disease. Poultry diseases spread very easily, on the air, on your shoes and clothing, via wild birds, on and on. But now that these birds are on your property all you can do is go on from here. Observe them carefully for any signs of illness, check them over for lice/mites, deworm them and hope they haven't brought along something nasty. Definitely keep them separate from your other birds for at least 30 days but, as mentioned, if they are on the same property it's very hard not to spread stuff around and true quarantine/biosecurity is hard for most people to achieve. The concern with bringing home adult birds from auctions or other unknown sources is that some of these diseases, once you have them, will stay on your property as long as you have chickens and dealing with ongoing disease outbreaks is no fun at all and that is an understatement.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2013

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