How do you know if your hens have worms?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by nittanyxi, Nov 3, 2011.

  1. nittanyxi

    nittanyxi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 24, 2010
    How do you know if your hens have worms and how do you worm them?
    when can you eat the eggs again after treatment?
  2. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

    Apr 15, 2009
    Sometimes you see the worms in their poop, sometimes you assume they have worms because of your environment, sometimes you suspect they have worms based on their body condition, and sometimes you have their feces checked by a vet for worm load. Everyone has a different way of dealing with worms. I'm just going to tell you my experiences and let everyone chime in with theirs.

    I hardly ever worm my birds. I don't need to. I live up north where the ground freezes for several months of the year. My birds do have mites fairly frequently, and the product I use on the mites is also effective on internal parasites, as well. So, even though I don't "worm" per se, the Eprinex I use to treat the mites also worms the birds at the same time. I have gotten into the habit of treating my birds for mites just before full winter starts here, so I guess you would say I worm my birds once a year.

    I hope this helps.
  3. AinaWGSD

    AinaWGSD Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 2, 2010
    Sullivan, IL
    Deworming is different for everyone. Personally, I am not a fan of deworming unless necessary, so I only deworm if I have seen a positive fecal sample (and in the case of coccidia, also see symptoms). I know the new chickens I just picked up have worms because I looked at a fecal float and I saw roundworm eggs and whipworm eggs. I know that my established flock has coccidia because I saw it in a fecal float. I also know that coccidia is common enough in chickens that it is considered "normal." It also persists in the environment for a very long time, and since it is already all over my yard and none of my chickens are showing any signs I chose not to deworm them for coccidia. My new chickens however have two types of worms that are not normal and can definitely affect weight gain, body condition, and egg production (when they get old enough to lay). They are in quarantine in the garage on a concrete floor, so the environment will be easy to clean and they have not yet passed these parasites to my already established flock. And whipworms can be passed to my dogs when they eat chicken poop. So I am deworming them.

    As for how to worm them, that depends on what medications you have easy access to, what you are trying to treat (there is no single dewormer that will take care of all worms), and how many chickens you have to treat. Someone with a large flock is more likely to use a medication that can be mixed with the drinking water or food. The downside is that you then have no real way of knowing how much each chicken got. And sometimes chickens will refuse to drink medicated water, which not only means they aren't getting any medication but also puts them at risk for dehydration, which can be deadly. Someone with only a few chickens will be better able to medicate each bird individually using a liquid medication and a syringe. This method ensures that each chicken is getting the correct dose, which means you can use less medication than you would if adding to food or water. But if you have more than just a few birds it can be very time consuming. Plus you have to catch the birds to medicate them which may or may not be stressful for them depending on how accustomed they are to being handled.

    The withdrawl time (the length of time before it is safe to eat the eggs or meat) depends on the medication you use. Some medications don't have any withdrawl time at all and it is fine to eat the eggs while you are medicating. Most have a withdrawl time between 2-4 weeks. It should say on the medication insert and/or packaging how long before you can eat the eggs.
  4. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Quote:Good info you provided with a couple of notes for you for future reference: Coccidia are protozoa, not worms. There is one wormer that will kill ALL worms in chickens...valbazen (albendazole.) Safeguard (fenbendazole) is a good wormer but wont kill tapeworms and flukes like valbazen will.

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