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Discussion in 'Where am I? Where are you!' started by jchny2000, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. Old Salt 1945

    Old Salt 1945 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am on my way to the hardware store for a spray can of robins egg blue paint. More than one way to get blue eggs.

    John
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. pipdzipdnreadytogo

    pipdzipdnreadytogo Dorking Love Premium Member

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    I am not really as educated in diseases as others, but I can give you a general response here. Marek's disease is everywhere, can be carried by wild birds or as dander in the wind, and can devastate a flock if it isn't taken care of. I do not vaccinate--or at least, I didn't. The reason is I had heard that those vaccinated can give the disease to those that have not been vaccinated, but I have also now heard that this is not the case. The most convincing explanation I have gotten is that the vaccine does not make the bird contagious, but asymptomatic, so if they get the disease, they become carriers and can infect unvaccinated birds. The nasty thing is, if they are asymptomatic, then you don't know if a new bird has one until you've exposed another bird to them. That is why a quarantine period including a first exposure 'volunteer' is the best way to safely introduce adult birds into your property.

    Should you be concerned about attending shows? Yes, because not only could there be Marek's, but MG, infectious bronchitis, and a plethora of other diseases that leave the survivors as carriers of the disease. Your best bet is to wash your clothing and shoes upon returning from a show, and quarantine any birds that you show or buy from the show. The same goes for if you take birds to a swap meet, flea market, another farm, or even if you visit the feed store. It's also best not to let others visit your flock without at least having them wear clean clothes and running their boots through a boot wash. This is a huge pain in the rear, but better than losing an entire flock to something that you or someone else carried in on their clothes.

    Coccidiosis is less of a problem, not only because it does not leave the birds as carriers, but because it is less likely to even affect an adult. The risk is in chicks, who have not had the exposure to the Cocci and are not immune to them. Generally, you don't have to worry about carrying Coccidiosis home from show, but be aware that it is in the soil and that wet, humid conditions can cause an outbreak in younger birds.

    Know your birds, know when they are not acting right, and be sure to have space available to separate any birds that begin to act ill so that you can prevent it from spreading a whole lot.



    I have frequently contemplated putting nests around the property for that same reason. However, what you can do to train them to use the nests in the coop is put a dummy egg in the nests and show it to them. My hens will use particular boxes if I put eggs in them at the beginning of the day. I believe this comes from their instinct to go back to where they've laid before. Sure, it may not be their egg, but they don't seem to mind. :confused:
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2013
    4 people like this.
  3. pipdzipdnreadytogo

    pipdzipdnreadytogo Dorking Love Premium Member

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    Sorry to have been the bearer of bad news about the Legbars, guys. :/ It stinks when people pull stuff like that.

    If I'm not mistaken, the bird in pginsber's video is a golden-cuckoo Marans, and it appears to be a hen. While similar to the birds that Old Salt posted, she is different in that she is lacking the very distinctly masculine brick-red shoulder patches that both of Old Salt's birds show.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  4. racinchickins

    racinchickins Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So the red shoulder patches are a giveaway? What color patterns is that true for? I have sooo much to learn........
     
  5. CRSelvey

    CRSelvey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I really hope we get some good news on Sesame today.

    John, thank you for that advice. We have been really careful with the wire except for that one incident. Just a few minor scratches here and there. I will definitely consider gloves for the rest.
     
  6. julie0477

    julie0477 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have been thinking about sesame today too. This is the first year after four years that I brought chickens in from an outside flock and I did it three times... Paranoia ringing in my ears all the way. All this mareks talk has my paranoia level unusually high ;) If sesame does indeed have mareks I have read that there is a possible herbal treatment - hypericum perforatum 30x which I believe is st johns wort. I've read several positive BYC user posts as well as read (ok skimmed) a study regarding use of the herb as an anti viral in chickens at www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc3384280. It's hard to believe it would cure such a thing but it does appear to have a positive effect on infected chickens. And if it's a loved pet you are treating and dont plan to breed and sell why not try it. I also learned the virus is not passed thru eggs, which is good, and some people breed for mareks resistance by culling those that show symptoms and breeding only those that have built an immunity. So scary for your flock, oh heck yes, but maybe not the end of the line for them. I hope sesame gets good news today!
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. julie0477

    julie0477 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't think I caught the entire ip address for that study. If u want to read it you will probably have to google it.
     
  8. danand

    danand Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quinstar- my younger girls leghorn started at 18-20 weeks. But my EEs and a few others have just now started so 24 ish. So it has depended on the breed. And since I have older girls already laying, eveybody has done pretty good going to the boxes. I have found a few eggs on the ground here and there! Now that being said I buff Banty brahmas who are the same age and they were laying a few and haven't laid anything for weeks!! I'm thinking about throwing them in with the big girls if they don't step up! They are large for Bantys anyhow.
     
  9. pipdzipdnreadytogo

    pipdzipdnreadytogo Dorking Love Premium Member

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    A good rule to look for that works in most cases is this: if the bird has rich color patches in the shoulder area at or younger than about 4 months old, it is usually male, while if it is patterned evenly overall, it is female. This depends on the color and breed, of course. Typically, the color on a pullet is not as vibrant as that of a cockerel, either. Take for example the light brown Leghorn. The rooster has a very vibrant pattern, but it is concentrated to the hackles, shoulders, and saddle area:

    [​IMG]


    The hen, such as my dear Whiri here, has a less vibrant coloration that is spread more uniformly than the rooster:

    [​IMG]


    Some mixes become trickier, especially Easter-eggers. See how the below bird has red in its shoulders? This, however, is a hen. The red is not as rich and is spread out, not concentrated in patches as it would be in a young cockerel.

    [​IMG]


    Now on my young Easter-egger cockerel, Hika Ma, while he was obviously male, he did not get the bright red shoulder patches. However, if you look closely, you can see that he has patches of white in his shoulders instead, presumably because he carries two copies of the silver gene:

    [​IMG]


    You also don't see red shoulders in birds like Barred Plymouth Rocks or Dominiques, but they can be easily sexed visually if they are pure bred because of the differences between the sexes. The hens, carrying only one copy of the barring gene, are darker barred or have thicker black bars than white. The males, carrying two barring genes, are lighter, or have wider white bars than black. However, since mixes between barred or cuckoo breeds and other breeds often result in roosters with one copy of the barring gene, this is not reliable unless you can confirm that the bird is pure bred.

    [​IMG]


    Typically also, unless it is a black bird like an Australorp, a hen will not have a black chest. That is how I was certain that Whiri was a pullet from pretty early on, even though she had a big comb. Her chest was rosy brown, not black like a Light Brown / Partridge cockerel's chest would have been.

    There are many other rules, but I feel like nothing can really be said with absolute certainty. In general, however, the above holds true to sexing birds by their appearances. I hope that answers your questions. :)

    (P.S., all of the pictures besides Whiri and Hika Ma were found on Google and are not my birds. ;) )


    ETA: This was in response to racinchickens, of course. :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2013
    6 people like this.
  10. Kiniska

    Kiniska Chillin' With My Peeps

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    28 weeks and mine still are not laying. :(
    I was told it could take a long time for them to get started though.
     

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