Need help identifying worm infestation

Schmay

Chirping
Dec 9, 2018
32
104
66
Adelaide, Australia
One of my chickens suffered dehydration when we had a hot day here in Australia so I separated her and bought her inside, then later discovered she has a massive worm infestation and would like help identifying the type of worm. I am new to having chickens so all advice is welcome.
 

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rebrascora

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Feb 14, 2014
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You need to inspect her vent area closely or get her into a bath of warm Epsom salts and be prepared for a very unpleasant shock. She will be full of maggots that are eating her alive. Many will come out and float in the water whilst she is soaking, but it will be a slow process over a period of days to get them all out and you will need to use tweezers to pick some of them out.... I hope you have a strong stomach as it really is gross. Usually there is an underlying issue that causes poop to stick to the vent feathers.... it may start with a prolapse or some other reproductive issue causing swelling and poop builds up in the feathers and flies lay eggs in the poop and the eggs hatch and the maggots start to eat into the chicken. If they have breached her abdominal cavity she may need to be euthanized. If you can get her cleaned up and trim her butt feathers right back and take a photo we may be able to assess how bad it is, or take her to a vet if you have that option. This is way more serious than simple dehydration.
 

Eggcessive

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I agree with others that those look like maggots, not worms. Look at her vent for an injury or prolapsed vent. The Epsom salts soaking would be good to do a few times, and until you get that, you may use dish soap or some betadine or mild salt water. I would buy some Chlorhexidene (Hibiclens) in your first aid aisle at stores, and mix it with water in a spray bottle according to the label. Vetericyn wound spray from the feed store is also good, but more expensive than a small bottle of Clorhexidene (Hibiclens.) Here is a good article to read about flystrike maggot infestation:
https://the-chicken-chick.com/flystrike-in-backyard-chickens-causes/
 

Schmay

Chirping
Dec 9, 2018
32
104
66
Adelaide, Australia
Hey guys thanks so much and quick replies too, I've been trying to tend to cleaning the area, but it's been a process trying to determine the cause. I have coated her in diatomaceous earth which seems to have killed most of them but I need to treat the cause to prevent it getting worse/ happening again
 

coach723

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Feb 12, 2015
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Yes, it is flies laying eggs in the wound. You need to move her to a place where no more flies can get to her until she's healed. The maggots will eat her alive, and they also will excrete toxins that can make her very, very sick or kill her. You should check her several times a day for up to a week to make sure that no new maggots have hatched, and remove any that are found. Fly strike commonly happens with droppings built up around the vent, vent prolapse, or open wounds.
 

Wyorp Rock

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Sep 20, 2015
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Hey guys thanks so much and quick replies too, I've been trying to tend to cleaning the area, but it's been a process trying to determine the cause. I have coated her in diatomaceous earth which seems to have killed most of them but I need to treat the cause to prevent it getting worse/ happening again

Also are these contagious? From what I've looked up it's just flies laying eggs in a damaged area/wound, but I have other chickens and also cats at home.
Photos of the wounds/damage?

Have you checked her over really well for the source of the maggots - look at her vent and check the whole body for any wounds, pus or seepage.

If the maggots are not taken care of, they will damage tissue and depending on where the wound is breech/enter the body cavity.
The maggots need to be killed and/or picked off. Whatever they were feeding on needs to be treated - you received good, detailed info in the previous posts.
 

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