1. bantam0907

    bantam0907 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a silkie cockrel who sadly just passed away this last week and i am just wondering if anyone had any idea how he died... I tihnk it was Marecks but im not for sure. He first showed signs of leg and wing paralysis, common in Marecks, and he lost a lot of weight and feathers. I burried him thinking Marecks is what killed him but i was just out feeding my hen when i spotted an enormous spider and that got me to thinking. Before he went into full blown leg paralysis he was limping, i checked his leg thinking he had hurt it somehow and i saw a small bloody spot, i didnt think anytihng of it at first but now that spider has me thinking, oculd he have died from a spider bite? I think it was Marecks personally but i was just wondering if perhaps that could be the culprit and if i should remove my hen from the shed till i get rid of the spiders... Just let me know what you guys think...
     
  2. chkn

    chkn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I guess the only other thing I could think of is maybe botulism or some vitamin deficiency. BTW, what kind of spider? I think chickens do gobble up some pretty nasty spiders, like even black widows, but I don't know what the limit is. A very good observation on your part though. Sorry about your bird.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2010
  3. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'd say likely not to spider. An insect or snake bit is going to cause swelling at bight site and a bunch of other symptoms depending on what type of vennom.

    Over what time frame did the chicken become sick and die?

    Botulisim is a quick onset and makes for a sick looking droopy chicken. Flaccid paralysis of the legs, wings, neck, and eyelids are likely to be seen. Symptoms are more often symetrical in nature and maybe more likely to start at neck and work down. If the bird is going to recover it will likely show signs of recovery in a day or two. Botulism does loosen feathers.

    Marek's on the other hand is slower going but more progressive, start out with a limp then weak leg, a droopy wing and goes from there. But, chicken may appear otherwise fine at least initially.
     
  4. bantam0907

    bantam0907 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yeah i was leaning more towards Marecks... he first started limping around mid september. It took about a week for the paralysis of the legs then i started him on a st. johns wart solution. He perked up considerably and seemed to have gotton better He was completly fine walking around eating and full of feathers and it was like over night... I went away for the weekend and i thought he was over it but when i got back he had lost alot of weight and feathers and i also noticed he couldnt strech his neck out. I was going to give him 1 month to see if he got better or i was going to put him down i found him the next morning... I was just hoping it wasnt marecks. What sohuld i do about my hen? She is acting fine, a little lonely but eating well full feathered and alert. I want to get another chicken for her but i noticed when i showed her she was always trying to work out the pecking order and she could get down right mean sometimes. I got to thinking though if i got her a fertalized egg and she hatched it out herself i think shed take care of it. What do you think?
     
  5. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you go with her hatching an egg it will be a pain to get a vaccination against Marek's which I would think you will want. She will need to go broody but then should be happy to be a mother hen for a couple months. After that you're back into a pecking order deal all over. Also I am not sure about vaccinations against Marek's for hen raised chicks as there might not be enough time from vaccination to exposure.

    If you get a hatchery chick then you can get it vaccinated already but it will be a little tricky to get her to think she should raise it.

    If you could find a small adult chicken that had been vaccinated it might make her good company.

    Other option may be just to wait things out a bit if your hen starts to show signs it might be the time to clean out and start over.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2010
  6. bantam0907

    bantam0907 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh, i so hope that isnt the case the chickens are my life it almost killed me to see my rooster go. Bu tyour completly right i would never deliberatly bring in another bird if there is the chance of it getitng sick. I will find something im sure. You cant get marecks vaccinations for older birds can you? i beleive i once heard that you can only vaccinate young chicks that are a couple day old...
     
  7. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Some people do give vaccinations to older birds, but I am not sure it is all that effective and the potential they will still be a carrier is there just te same.

    Around here anyway I think it would be near impossible and very expensive to attempt to find a vaccination for a single chicken. I don't know where I would even start to look, vet I suspect might know.
     
  8. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just tinking on the question of vaccinating the older chickens. Most times it very likely won't work.
    The vaccine is essentially a version of Marek's that does not cause smptoms but builds an immunity to the other version that causes the problems. From the time a chick is hatched it is a race to see which version the chick gets. If it gets the "bad" Marek's first it will develop immunity to the vaccine version and possible go on to latter develop symptoms. If it gets the "good" vaccine version first then it gives it a chance to develop immunity to the "bad". However some time is needed from the time it gets the "good" version until it is exposed to the "bad".

    For this reason there is likely no point in vaccinating the hen, it likely already has either the good or bad and the vaccine won't change the outcome. Also any chicks that come it would need to be vaccinated and kept in SUPER biosecurity until about 10 days old to give them a cance to build antibodies. That said giving your hen an egg won't work which is kind of what I was getting at. I've even herd of people keeping chicks with/exposed to turkeys as the turkeys carry the
    good version and exposure is like vaccination. I don't know if there is truth to that though???? Anyone?
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2010
  9. marthacolleen

    marthacolleen Out Of The Brooder

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    I recently received a whole shipment of chicks infected with Mareck's from Healthy Chicks and More and there is no cure, nor is there any hope of introducing new birds, as if they manage to survive (very doubtful) they will be carriers for life with this contagious viral disease. They need to revise their name to anything BUT Healthy Chiks and More!
     
  10. marthacolleen

    marthacolleen Out Of The Brooder

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    Kelly - it is a viral disease, HIGHLY contagious, and carried in their "dander" - so any feathers they shed, etc... will carry the virus for months. There is a vaccination that can be given for it, it's a sub-cut injection that needs to be given at one day of age. I'm sorry you had this also, it's horrific to watch them succumb to it.
     

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