Over my head

Mandykay

Chirping
Jan 15, 2021
83
89
89
Kansas
Hello all, need some advice as I feel like an utter failure. I have backyard flock of 13 hens and 2 ducks. In the last week I have lost a 20 week old EE to unknown causes, I have a year old hen with vent gleet, a year old hen with ongoing crop issues due to a unknown item in her crop that will not pass are breakdown, three cases of mild stage 2 bumble foot, and now the hen with vent gleet had a soft shell egg hanging from her vent.. I gently removed it and cleaned her up.. I found a second soft shell on the poop board. Not sure if it is from the same hen. we use pine flake bedding in the 10x 4 coop as well as the 8x20 covered run. I turn the bedding daily and scoop the poo in the coop daily. We feed Purina flock raiser as I have 5 pullets that are not laying yet. They have free choice oyster shell and grit available in separate dishes. Four water sources replaced twice daily with clean water. We allow free ranging for an hour each evening with supervision as I am in a town. They get fly grubs and meal worms as treats. What the hell am I doing wrong? I took a combined fecal sample to my vet for a float and am awaiting results. He will see my birds, but is admittedly not super knowledgeable. Would it be possible to spray the coop and run with nonactivated Oxine to maybe help disinfect the area? I am seriously at a loss. These girls are pets that just happen to poop breakfast and my therapy on shit days. Any advice or thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
 

LaFleche

Meadow Devil
10 Years
Sep 22, 2012
8,677
32,504
1,012
Germany
Do you keep the ducks in the same coop and run with the chickens?

Are they just female ducks or do you have a drake?

I would stop the worms and fly grubs, just feed the flock raiser and offer crushed oyster shells and grit in a separate dish free choice.

Provide some extra calcium + vitamin D3 + vitamin K for at least 10 days to help with the shell issue. There are liquid additives for poultry availabe, but tablets for people would also serve the purpose.
 

Mandykay

Chirping
Jan 15, 2021
83
89
89
Kansas
They are all together hens only no drakes. My ducks were raised with my girls and are very protective of them. I've ordered some supplements for calcium and some probiotics to add to the feed. What is your opinion on spraying everything with the oxine?
 

LaFleche

Meadow Devil
10 Years
Sep 22, 2012
8,677
32,504
1,012
Germany
What is your opinion on spraying everything with the oxine?
Unless you take swaps to have them analyzed and get concerning results, I don't see a reason for it.

What do you use as bedding in the nests and how often do you change it?

The problem with ducks and chickens sharing the same coop is, that ducks bring lots of humidity in, while chickens need their coop as dry as possible.
And chickens are quite sensitive to duck bacteria, so if they use the same nests, chickens can get ascending infections of their oviducts, due to their cloaca coming into contact with the soiled bedding during the act of egg laying:

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=egg+laying+chickens&&view=detail&mid=9E3341D5428E7540F9279E3341D5428E7540F927&&FORM=VRDGAR&ru=/videos/search?q=egg+laying+chickens&FORM=HDRSC3

You can see part of the cloaca/oviduct come out while passing the egg, and retract when done.
 

Mandykay

Chirping
Jan 15, 2021
83
89
89
Kansas
Unless you take swaps to have them analyzed and get concerning results, I don't see a reason for it.

What do you use as bedding in the nests and how often do you change it?

The problem with ducks and chickens sharing the same coop is, that ducks bring lots of humidity in, while chickens need their coop as dry as possible.
And chickens are quite sensitive to duck bacteria, so if they use the same nests, chickens can get ascending infections of their oviducts, due to their cloaca coming into contact with the soiled bedding during the act of egg laying:

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=egg+laying+chickens&&view=detail&mid=9E3341D5428E7540F9279E3341D5428E7540F927&&FORM=VRDGAR&ru=/videos/search?q=egg+laying+chickens&FORM=HDRSC3
I use pine flake bedding in the boxes and change it weekly. My ducks don't use the nesting boxes. I only have one duck laying so far and she has made herself a nest under the ramp. Oddly both ducks think they are chickens and actually sleep on the perches next to the chickens. My perch is a 2x4 with the 4inch side up. My coop has ventilation on all four sides ranging from four inches on the north side to 8 inches on the south side, five windows which are currently all open and the full size coop door is open all the time. All covered with hardware cloth. I scoop the poop off the board and clean any I see on the floor around 8am every morning. I have temp and humidity gauge in the coop and run and the humidity is usually about the same as outside humidity..
 

LaFleche

Meadow Devil
10 Years
Sep 22, 2012
8,677
32,504
1,012
Germany
I use pine flake bedding in the boxes and change it weekly. My ducks don't use the nesting boxes. I only have one duck laying so far and she has made herself a nest under the ramp. Oddly both ducks think they are chickens and actually sleep on the perches next to the chickens. My perch is a 2x4 with the 4inch side up. My coop has ventilation on all four sides ranging from four inches on the north side to 8 inches on the south side, five windows which are currently all open and the full size coop door is open all the time. All covered with hardware cloth. I scoop the poop off the board and clean any I see on the floor around 8am every morning. I have temp and humidity gauge in the coop and run and the humidity is usually about the same as outside humidity..
Even though you try to keep it all very clean and take a lot of precautions, the chickens will step into the duck poop and enter the nestboxes with these pathogens on their feet.

And the ducks will immediately soil every water dish they have access to. That's just what ducks do. They love to create mud whenever and wherever possible.

There are people keeping ducks and chickens together that claim to never have had any problems even sharing the same coop.

But it is known among breeders, that duck bacteria have a severe impact on the fertility and hatchability of chicken eggs.
 

Mandykay

Chirping
Jan 15, 2021
83
89
89
Kansas
The one duck and five hens have been together for a year in a tiny coop. We purchased another duck and hens about five months ago and just integrated them into the flock after building the larger coop about a month ago. Hadn't had any issues until this last week with the exception of the girl with the obstruction in her crop. So frustrating..
 

LaFleche

Meadow Devil
10 Years
Sep 22, 2012
8,677
32,504
1,012
Germany
The one duck and five hens have been together for a year in a tiny coop. We purchased another duck and hens about five months ago and just integrated them into the flock after building the larger coop about a month ago. Hadn't had any issues until this last week with the exception of the girl with the obstruction in her crop. So frustrating..
The new flockmates might have brought some pathogens to your flock.

Did you quarantine them poperly for 4 weeks far away from your flock prior to adding them?

Did the new duck come with the new chickens or did you purchase the new duck somewhere else?
 

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