Makes me wonder...


11 Years
Apr 21, 2008
North Central Florida
Have you ever noticed that while brooding your chicks, we keep everything perfect, clean, washed and warm! Poor babies peep in distress when temp or light bulb has changed...yet going out this morning, checking on everyone...I see my momma bird out strutting around in the tractor. 45* and baby is nipping at the grass, peeping happily, alert and ready to jump and run everytime momma finds something tastey!!
What makes you wonder?

Another one of those questions is how a bunch of birds can go eat from a swill pile/compost, bad food, yet they live each day very healthily. Give them feed that has been damp for a short while, they are knocked down from Coccidiosis!
Yup, I certainly have noticed. I don't brood as warm as is recommended here. And I really don't plan to brood again at all if possible, having watched a hen raise a chick late last fall, with the week old chick outdoors in colder temps than 45 degrees, going under Mama when chilled but spending hours in the sun pecking and scratching. The chick did fine for several weeks, then succumbed to a predator. BTW, the hen and chick were never isolated from their flock. (Never occurred to me to isolate them.) Doesn't mean this is the best way to do it, but it can work....

I think Mamas teach chicks what to eat and how to avoid danger, at least to some extent. They also gain immunities from eating a little of Mom's poo that they can't get in a brooder.

A couple of misconceptions here, though. I believe it is botulism they can get from damp feed. Cocci are in the soil. And they really should not have access to compost piles. They may do fine, but they may not. They do develop a natural immunity to cocci if the load isn't too bad.

Chickens eat earthworms, and earthworms carry chicken parasites. If they are healthy, evidently the load is small enough that they can tolerate it, but that doesn't mean we should be feeding them large amounts of earthworms.
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what is a large amount?
if im digging my chicks will usually walk over cause they know and if i find them i will give it to them
Enough to make them sick. You might consider researching worms and putting them on a worming program.
I have had chicks with Coccidiosis with chicks that have never stepped foot on soil. Also your adult birds can also have Cocci, as it came back to me in a test. If your birds are eating grass, organic matter such as that, they will pass a lot of the parasites through. I would suggest having a fecal float done before giving any medication. Don't give medications freely, this is how immunity and resistance begins.
Keeping healthy birds is a big key to avoiding many illness' and I agree with keeping them out of the compost pile...but its organic leaf type litter, not foods and swill. They get into it 1 day out of 3 months.
Poultry will eat mice, and all that type stuff for protien, they will eat another, just keep your poultry healthy, they will be able to fight off most of what they are exposed to.
The poultry club claims that deworming is more for birds that are off the ground not eating as much of a fiberous diet of fresh stuff. Now, if they are caged persay, where are they getting worms from? another hmmm.

I will say this on your side ddawn, I do use Iver each spring, keeps mites and fleas away along with the side effect of no worms!
Have a good one!

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