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Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by GoldenSparrow, Jun 27, 2011.
is medicated feed, just the same as Vaccinating?
whats the difference?
what is better?
It's my understanding that medicated feed is to help build up your chicks immunity to coccidosis. I don't think you can vaccinate for cocci. You can get chicks that have been vaccinated for Mericks disease though.
Vaccinations are done for prevention of viral diseases (Marek's is the one most commonly offered). Medicated feed is for Coccidiosis prevention although some may also contain a general-purpose antibiotic. So, their coverage is completely unrelated and it's not a one or the other decision.
ETA: There is a vax for cocci also but I don't recall seeing it offered by any of the hatcheries. If you do manage to get them vaxed for cocci, that is supposed to be more effective than medicated feed and you would use a non-medicated feed to avoid negating the vax.
In medicated feed the medication is amprollium which is in the Starter or Starter/Grower and helps in the chicks development in their resistance to cocci. It is sulfa based. I feed it to the birds until I get my first egg then I switch over to Layer. If I have any medicated Starter/Grower or Grower left over when I get my first egg, I mix in the leftover feed with the Layer feed. There is only a problem eating the eggs layed by the birds that have had the medicated feed when they start to lay if you have any allergies to Sulfa.
but should I Vaccinate?
To vaccinate or not is solely a personal decision. If you want to eliminate the possibility of Mereks "that specific chicken" then vaccinate. If you plan on breeding and want to have your blood lines build up a resistance then you would want to consider not vacinating and any chickens. I don't believe you can make a wrong decision either way. Chickens do get diseases and do die from them so make an educated decision and work with that decision. Make adjustments to your decision once you see results you like/don't like.
Personally I do not like to vaccinate. I have had to cull a single (1) chicken with Mereks in the last 10 yrs. Some obviously deal with it more often.
At least one hatchery, McMurray, offers a Cocci vaccination. It does not protect against all strains of the protozoa that causes Cocci, but it offers protection against some of them. I personally do not get the chicks vaccinated and I do not feed medicated feed. I feed them some dirt from the run while they are very young and better able to develop the immunities they need. By keeping the brooder pretty dry, I can manage the Cocci so they develop that immunity instead of get sick. In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with feeding the chicks the medicated feed since they can still develop the immunity, but unless they have been exposed to the protozoa that causes Cocci, it does no good.
Before I got my first chicks, I called my county extension agent who connected me with a man who raises chickens, teaches about chicken diseases at the state University, and is on the response team when a chicken disease outbreak occurs in this region. We discussed how I planned to manage my chickens (A closed flock. No shows or chicken swaps. Only introduce new chickens by hatching my eggs or getting chicks from a known hatchery. No new adult chickens) We discussed the history of different diseases in this area. There had only been one reported case of Marek's in this county in the previous two years. With this information, I elected to not have the chicks vaccinated.
Should you vaccine your chicks against Marek's? I don't know the conditions in your area. If Marek's is prevalent in your area, yes you should. If you have a history of Marek's in your flock, yes you should. If you are going to show your chickens and mix them with others where they are likely to be exposed, I probably would. But it is a personal decision depending in your local conditions, how you plan to manage them, and your risk tolerance. Or you can just get them vaccinated and not worry about it. It does not hurt them. But I cannot decide for you.
Thank you all, see i am haveing one of my hens hatch, I am leaving her in the coop with the chicks, and other chickens when they hatch.
at the moment one of my other hens is sick ( we dont know why?) she too is with all the others.
is anything wrong with that?????
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps030 on vaccinations
On leaving a sick hen with the flock, it depends what she is sick with, although if it'sc contagious, they have all already been exposed. I let my broodies hatch and raise chicks in with the flock, too.
so if they have already been exposed, would it matter if I left her with the flock?