Mystery Sickness?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by CTL7, Jan 26, 2014.

  1. CTL7

    CTL7 Out Of The Brooder

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    I have been trying to figure out why my birds are dying for a while now. It's not a ton of them, but can be several at one time. It started last year, either sometime in February or March. I lost 5 young guineas about 10 weeks old. They died within the span of a couple days. They were all fine one day, and the next morning 2 were dead. Another one was lethargic and died within a couple hrs. Then the next morning 2 more were acting rather droopy, and they died in a couple hrs.

    After that, I didn't have anything else to die for quite a while. I've looked all over the web and couldn't find anything like it.

    Then in the past 6 months, I've lost 3 roosters, 6 hens and a young goose. I caught the 3 silkie hens when they first started getting droopy, and I took them away from the rest of my flock and tried feeding them vitamins and made sure they were warm. 2 died within hrs, like the guineas, but one took almost another week, though I had to force feed her with an eye dropper bc she wouldn't eat on her own.

    The most recent were a bantam hen, and a orpington pullet. The bantam is still living, but I lost the orpington that night. The other 2 hens I lost, I just found them dead the next morning with no pryor signs of illness.

    I did notice, in the ones I managed to catch early, they would puff their neck feathers out like they were cold, and I couldn't smooth them down. Now my showgirl hen is getting lumps on her neck, and I'm wondering if it's the same thing.

    The orpington pullet had a crop full of food, so I know she didn't die from not eating, Thought the others did seem to have a lost of appetite.

    I'm sorry this is so long, just trying to put out all the information I have. I have search the web over, and asked a lot of people I know that know a lot about chickens and things, but no one has any ideas.
     
  2. TheSitcomGirls

    TheSitcomGirls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a couple of older hens that hid themselves away from the other chickens when their feathers started growing back from a molt. Their combs were pale and a little droopy. The only thing I could think of was that they were not dust bathing because the new feathers hurt. So the bugs got a foothold and they were old so they went downhill fast. Even though I couldn't see any parasites I dusted them well with poultry dust and got some mealworms. I gave them mealworms twice a day and re-dusted them in a week. They both looked much better in just a day.

    So I am not sure how old your birds are, but I would clean the coop well and dust all your birds and nestboxes for bugs. It can't hurt!
     
  3. CTL7

    CTL7 Out Of The Brooder

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    Most of mine have been younger birds with the exception of my bantam and the rir. It seems to the worst when the weather is cold and damp. I have been giving them DE lately, to make sure they don't have worms. I also dusted them with it. I probably need to dust the coops too, but I don't think that's the problem.
     
  4. realsis

    realsis Crazy for Silkies

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    Is it possible they have coccidiosis ?cocci can be present in adult birds as well.. bloody stool does not have to be present for them to have cocci. The symptoms would be droopiness loss of appetite sleepiness ruffled feathers huddling or acting chilled diarrhea pale comb and wattles and blood may or MAY NOT be present in feces. All strains of cocci can be killed with a medication called amprollium. Brand names are corid and amprol. If you don't have other symptoms such as wheezing or mucus coughing or sneezing swelling of eyes or foamy eyes or anything related to a upper respitory tract infection I might consider coccidiosis . Are they loosing weight as well? How long has it been since they were wormed? What EXACTLY are their symptoms..? If their symptoms are as described above I might suspect cocci. Look listen and feel for ANY clues or symptoms you may find and post them here. Any thing at all you noticed that might be different or off about them? Using DE is not worming. This will not prevent intestinal worms. As for the lump on her neck can you post a picture of it? Did the other birds have lumps as well?
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2014
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  5. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    X 2 what realsis said. My first suspicions would be coccidiosis and/or parasites, both internal and external.
     
  6. CTL7

    CTL7 Out Of The Brooder

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    I'll get a photo of the showgirl in the morning. One of the roosters did have a bit of mucus, but he was the only one. I think he had a weak immune system too. Some of them seemed to have lost weight, others did not. One silkie was molting. I can't feel or see anything except for the lumps on the showgirl. I was wondering if the others may have had lumps, because of the way they puffed their neck feathers out. One did have watery poo, but another one's looked dark and gooey, though I'm not sure if that has anything to do with anything. I have started adding ACV to their water, it seemed to help the bantam. She is actually starting to look better, she is also in a house with a heater.

    Most of the chickens are egg layers, so they haven't been wormed, but I've only had them a couple years. I was told by several people who raise them around here, that de was an efficient way to worm them without having to throw out the eggs. If there is a better way, without loosing eggs, I'd try it. If I think of anything else I'll add it.
     
  7. CTL7

    CTL7 Out Of The Brooder

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    Here are a few photos of the showgirl, thanks for your help.
    [​IMG]

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    [​IMG]
     
  8. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    DE will not kill internal parasites, it is not very effective against external parasites, either. Most of the symptoms you described point to worms or lice/mites. Coccidia can/will infected chickens that are stressed.
     
  9. CTL7

    CTL7 Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm still curious about the lumps on the showgirl's neck. Also the bantam seemed to take a turn for the worse today, she can't walk without loosing her balance and typically falls forward. I'm rather glad my classes were canceled today, I'd have skipped them to tend her otherwise.
     
  10. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    It sounds to me like you may have some underlying coccidiosis, but also some Mareks disease and respiratory disease in your flock. The tumors in the neck, and the trouble walking and with balance are typical of Mareks. Coccidiosis should be treated with amprollium (Corid) for 5 days. Dosage is1.5 tsp powder or 2 tsp liquid Corid in 1 gallon of water--treat all birds. Then after 5 days, give them vitamins and probiotics in the water for 1 week. Cocci and worms can weaken your birds to other common diseases such as Mareks, respiratory diseases, poor growth and egg- laying in the future. SafeGuard (fenbendazole) horse paste 1/2 ml per bird would be a good worm treatment.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2014

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