Losing Birds Regularly to sickness. My heart is breaking over and over

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Sterlingc27, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Sterlingc27

    Sterlingc27 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 24, 2010
    Ghio, NC
    I have lost 4 bantam OEG birds to some sort of mild sickness. The birds seem just fine until one day you notice they seem a little lethargic and then within 24 hrs they are dead. I did notice a little sneeze here and there from a few of the birds but it didnt seem like a serious problem. Other than the occasional sneeze and being a bit snotty there are no indications as to what it is. THe birds are all young (under 1 year) and i bought them all from somewhat decrepid circumstances. THey have on the whole been healthy birds but now im really concerned that this will continue.

    I let my birds out 3 times per week for bathing, foraging and sunshine otherwise they are in open pens and get moderate sun and have clean environments. I try not to feed anyone old or spoiled scraps but they do scratch up an old pear core or some compost from time to time. I feed them fresh greens from the garden every other day. I change water daily but i do admit im light on the bleach once a week rule.
    Could water cleanliness be the problem ?
    The birds do get moved in to each others pens temporarily sometimes and i wonder if this could spread the sickness.
    Also arent birds hardy animals? Is all this happening because i have them in pens? If these were fully free range birds would i be likely to have this problem?

    Thanks for the Help I really want to put an end to this problem.
     
  2. Sterlingc27

    Sterlingc27 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 24, 2010
    Ghio, NC
    Ok upon close inspection this morning i notice a lot of my birds are sneezing and seem to be showing first signs of illness. its sunday and i dont have access to my local resources. What do i do? Is bleach in the water an ok antibiotic?
     
  3. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

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    Oh dear. You are adding started birds to your established flock? Big time no-no, a minimum of 30 days in quarantine is suggested.

    Here's a thread abount quarantine. https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=12751

    But
    that's hindsight. What will work is a search for "respiratory disease" and try to narrow it down to which one you are dealing with. Then treat acccordingly, I find the local Tractor Supply has almost everything I need. You'll need to treat them all, every single bird. And a really thorough cleanout of all pens and coops. That's where you need the bleach. Rinse and ventilate well.

    Sorry it's not better news or an easy fix. But once you get a respiratory disease running loose, it's a nightmare. Quite a few here can attest to having had to cull their entire flock, simply because they brought one new bird in. Many birds show no symptoms but are carriers.

    Bleach is NOT an antibiotic. It's just a cleaner to kill algae in waterers and frankly, I don't use it in waterers. I won't drink it, why should my birds? I scrub the waterers with a coarse sponge twice a week and change water daily.

    I am so sorry you are having this to deal with, and best of luck to you.
     
  4. Sterlingc27

    Sterlingc27 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 24, 2010
    Ghio, NC
    Thanks. Good Old Intuition wins again. I dont care for bleach either. And as i suspected water needs only to be fresh and clean. I am looking into a treatment all day today for sure. I wasnt aware of the quarantine rule now i am thank you very much. I realistically bought all my birds in the past month from two different people and i suppose they are all in quarantine as i keep my standard birds some 500 ft away in another yard. Should i treat everyone?
     
  5. Sterlingc27

    Sterlingc27 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 24, 2010
    Ghio, NC
    The Bird is looking much more lively. Barely drank some water w/ antibios and he is perked up over the last hour. Respitory disease maybe. Treating the other Mille Flieures and Porcelains that shared the pen.

    Should i leave the bird inside over night? Seems like the bird does better in the sun.
     
  6. Tdub4chiks

    Tdub4chiks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Constantia, NY
    Why would you put bleach in their water? I understand that a lot of people clean with bleach, but I've never heard of feeding it to your chickens. It just seems like this would be very harmful. Does it help them in some way? I've very new to this so excuse my stupid questions.
     
  7. Sterlingc27

    Sterlingc27 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 24, 2010
    Ghio, NC
    Got up this morning at 4 and my bird was ok then he tried to move and i woke later to find he was laying down. I sat him in my lap and tried to warm him but het soon died and now i am so heartbroken that i dont know what to do. I have other birds in quarantine and have given them antbiotics in their water. So far no signs of improvement; it's only been 1 day. They are all sneezing and coughing. I leave them in the sun all day and they seem to do best in the sun. I think my birdie would have lived if I could have got him in the sun.

    Has anyone else had similar problems in shady areas?

    Has anyone found a difference between sunny and not sunny birds?

    Has anyone ever dealt with sinusitis or bronchitis in their birds? Did you lose any? Could you save any?

    How do i determine exactly what disease i have so i can know if i will always have carriers or if they can be cured?


    Bleach is used by some to keep long standing water from building up bacteria and algea. Most of the time its a waste of effort as algea isnt harmful to birds and most bacteria isnt. The birds may or may not care about the bleach but it does them no good and adds chemical to your otherwise natural birds. Otherwise it is a cleaner.
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2010
  8. Sjisty

    Sjisty Scribe of Brahmalot

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    Hi Sterling -

    First of all, welcome to BYC. I wish you were here on happier circumstances. Have you tried organic apple cider vinegar with the "mother" in your water? It really helps to keep the algae down and is good for the chickens, too. I notice a big difference in my waterers when I use it instead of just plain water. Do a search on this site and you will learn more about it.

    I see quarantining has already been mentioned. Tylan is good for respiratory illnesses, but sometimes is hard to find. I got mine through googling it on line, but that wouldn't help you immediately. You might want to get some for future use. There are also other products, not particularly made for chickens, but they are good, also. Fish-Mox is amoxicillin and is easily obtainable through Amazon.com, as are Fish Flex (Cephalexin) and Aqua-Floxin (ciprofloxacin). The only drawback is if you don't know what the infection is, you don't really know what medication to use. There is another website called Ask a Doctor or Ask a Vet (I'm not sure, only used it once). They can help, but they charge to answer your question.

    Good luck!
     

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