Marek's - Innoculate older chickens ?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Rusted One, May 7, 2011.

  1. Rusted One

    Rusted One Out Of The Brooder

    May 6, 2011
    While I don't see any symptoms among my 30+ birds, I've been reading a bit on Marek's disease. I now understand it's prudent to vaccinate day-old chicks. However, I currently have 17 birds that are 2 months old, 10 other chickens that range from 3 months to 6 years old, two geese (10 yr, 8 mo.) and 5 ducks that are about 6 months old.
    I read that older birds may have survived expoure to Mareks but may still be shedding the virus via dander. So do I vaccinate only my coming 1-day-old chicks, or incude the 2 month-old chickens and/or vaccinate the whole darn herd?
    I work at keeping their houses and pens clean, regularly scrub waterers and inspect them regularly. Any time I've found a sick bird, he gets isolated immediately. I feed medicated chick starter for the first few months and don't use other antibiotics unless it appears warranted. But I'm still not clear on how to guard against Mareks beyond vaccinating day-old chicks. Anyone experienced in this ? Just like to be on the safe side.
    Oh, also.... have a bunch of ring-neck eggs in the 'bator, so I'm looking to see if the same vaccine for chickens would be appropriate for pheasants. Thanks in advance for any sage advice.

    Rusted One
  2. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Loving this country life Premium Member

    Oct 3, 2009
    Mountains of Western N.C.
    Hi, I don't vaccinate my chickens so I cannot really answer your questions, except to say I do know that geese are very hardy and because of their high body temperature they are not easily to get sick, but if your flock of chickens became sick then I'd be more concerned. but I did find this link that may help till someone can help you with your question.
  3. pips&peeps

    pips&peeps There is no "I" in Ameraucana

    Jan 18, 2008
    Newman Lake, WA
    Geese and ducks won't get it. I would vaccinate anything under six months of age for mareks.
  4. Rusted One

    Rusted One Out Of The Brooder

    May 6, 2011
    Thanks, folks. I'll check the link.... and vaccinate my <6 month birds. After reading a bit on Mareks I went "holy cow... I should have been taking care of this ! ".
    I'm continually humbled by the internet... been hatching out poultry on a small scale for 25 years and coccidiosis was about the only disease issue I was aware of. I guess I could have been more scientific and actually read a book on chicken diseases, huh? But via the internet it's sooooo easy to bump into valuable info. My flocks will be better off for it.

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