1. MNShepherdess

    MNShepherdess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 11, 2011
    Minnesota
    I am trying my best not to panic at the moment, scouring through threads and such, but I wanted to post as well just incase I miss something.

    I ordered 2 batches of chicks from Ideal this spring/winter. First batch came the beginning of February, the second batch a few weeks later. I didn't vaccinate for Mareks because it suggest only commercial flocks to vaccinate, and I've never vaccinated before and prefer birds to be as natural as possible.

    First batch went to my mothers when the second batch came. A couple days ago she told me one was getting walked on a lot, so she was going to bring it over with the young ones so it wasn't walked on as much. So I put it in with the younger ones. Yesterday it was only kind of limping, would get up walk a few steps and lay down again. Now today, I'm seeing splay legs. I'm assuming Mareks.

    Now my problem....do I cull both brooders and start over? They have had no contact with outside poultry at least. Do I just keep them separated until they're over a year old? Do I get rid of all my poultry and pull my hair out and cry? lol. I've never had to deal with this before, as I know it's untreatable, but I know there are a lot of people who deal with it so I would like some advice please :) I really don't want to destroy the babies, but I will if it prevents it from spreading. I've been trying to do as much research as I can this morning, but my head is just swimming....

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. nivtup

    nivtup Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 24, 2008
    Shelton Washington
    I would not panic yet.

    I think Marek's has a longer incubation period than the age of your chicks.

    I would not cull the group based on that one bird, I would cull the one bird though.

    Hopefully it is something else that has caused the problem.

    Good luck.
     
  3. MNShepherdess

    MNShepherdess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 11, 2011
    Minnesota
    Thanks.

    We did put the chick down. All of the chicks were from Ideal, and I did not vaccinate (always been told not to unless it's know that you have it) minus one, he was introduced to the older chicks (the same batch the sick chick was in) after they were about a week old and he was about 2 weeks old. They were moved to my moms when I got this newest batch on the 15th. She only developed symptoms a day or two ago. I thought maybe she had caught her leg and someone stepped on it, and one knee did seem slightly swollen compared to the other. She could walk a bit yesterday when my mother brought her, but she progressively worsened. Today she couldn't walk, legs splayed at times, other times just not working at all. She's not even a month old...Still nervous and will be watching everyone else VERY closely.
     
  4. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 1, 2011
    Do you or your mother have any other chickens? If not, the odds of this being Marek's is very, very slim. I'm sorry that I didn't see this sooner, I would have advised you to have the chick necropsied. That way, you would have been able to rest assured that you would have had your answer. Then, the worry could end.
     
  5. MNShepherdess

    MNShepherdess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 11, 2011
    Minnesota
    Yes, we do have other poultry, and have raised chicks in previous years, raised about 50 last year, and have never had a problem.

    I thought about a necropsy, but we only have 2 dog vets in town, and I was unfamiliar if you had to freeze them, not freeze them, etc. If it happens again, I will contact a farm vet and have them analyze it.

    And even with necropsy, if it weren't the tumors, if it were the other problems, wouldn't it go overlooked? Or are the tumors always there?


     
  6. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    With the paralysis, the nerves would be affected and the vet would be able to tell. They get nodules on them and that's what causes the paralysis. See if you can locate a state lab...they will usually do the necropsy for free or a small fee.

    The bird needs to be kept in the refridgerator, freezing destroys tissues that are needed for sampling.

    I know that your chick was young but there was a person on here whose chick tested positive for Marek's at 5 weeks old. So, it isn't impossible.

    Keep an eye on the rest and I hope it was just a random thing and that the rest remain happy and healthy :)
     
  7. MNShepherdess

    MNShepherdess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 11, 2011
    Minnesota
    Thanks for the encouragement....I will definitely be keeping a close eye. Any recommendations as to how long I should keep them separated from other birds?
     
  8. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Marek's can have an incubation period of up to eight weeks, sometimes longer. However, I would think that being so young you would see some signs sooner rather than later if someone else is going to get it.

    If it were me, I would keep them separated for the full 8 weeks....just to be safe.
     
  9. MNShepherdess

    MNShepherdess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 11, 2011
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    I've heard of it not rearing it's head for nearly a year? I would assume that 8 weeks is more typical of the virus though?
     
  10. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Once exposed, especially for the chicks, it shouldn't be long before another shows symptoms. Older birds with a little more resistance can't take longer and normally show symptoms at times of stress. I'm no expert, just trying to help with the information that I have gathered. 8 weeks is just my best guess. I've been fighting Marek's since last August. I try to practice the best quarantine/biosecurity and sanitation practices that I can...
     

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