Please help save these chickens


In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 28, 2012
On April 1st, I made the 4 hour trip up to buy some Black Copper Maran chicks, about 8 weeks old. Because it was 4 hours back home, it was late and while we were unloading, I heard one of them with raspy breathing. They were in a room where the temp was 60 degrees. The birds were transported in the back of a Chevy Equinox, so they weren't exposed to wind or cold. I emailed the gal I bought them from and told her I had one that was really rattling when she took a breath and wondered if she was having the same problem and what she would suggest I do for it. I also called the Durvet company to see what the dosage is for Tetracycline and started them on it. 1 Tablespoon per gallon of water. By the next day I had another sick one. Now it has progressed to raspy breathing, eyes stuck shut and discharge from nostrils. The gal I bought them from told me she went out to check the 2 she had left that was in the same pen and she heard a sneeze when she walked in so she got the dosage from me for the Tetracycline and started her birds on it. I ran the Tetracycline for 7 days on the whole flock. I also started using VetRx on the sickest of them, putting a couple of drops on each birds nostrils. The VetRx seemed to do a lot of good, after a couple of days their breathing cleared up. We have been battling this since we got them and it appears to be going through the flock, even though I ran Tetracycline for 7 days on all of them. I lost one bird yesterday and have 2 more that were just brought in tonight, both birds eyes are stuck shut. A girl friend of mine bought half of the flock of these birds and she has not only lost 3 of the black copper marans, but she has also lost 3 of her other chickens. I have NO experience with sick chickens, mine have always been pretty healthy. Is there something else I should be doing for them? I have the 2 with the eyes stuck shut in the house. I got their eyes so they would open and put an antibiotic ointment in them, I have started them on Tetracycline again and put a vaporizer in with them. I covered the top of the pen as the light seems to bother their eyes. Is there another antibiotic I can use that would be more effective? Is it normal for this to be affecting the birds for this long? I do have this flock quarantined from my other birds. Here are a couple of pictures I just took of them. The hen isn't eating or drinking, she just lays there with her eyes closed. Please, any advice would be appreciated. I don't want to lose anymore birds.

looks to me like possible Corzya. please look up picture of bird with corzya it looks just like above first picture. in my health book for chickens it says you can relieve the Symptoms with tylosin or TYLAN50. dose would be large bird 1/2 cc small bird 1/4 cc once daily for 5 days injected into the breast muscle.. problem is "symptoms" are gone however the birds remain carriers for life IF its corzya. just so your aware. do a bit of research on corzya and see what you think... IF its not Corzya I still recommend tylan really knocks respiratory illnesses ! its strong and they get a much more controlled dose than with a water soluble antibiotic.problem with water soluble is that the dose is contingent on amount bird drinks. and when ill sometimes that is not a injectable will give them a steady and controlled dose and you should see improvements in a few days. you can get the tylan50 along with the syringe at the feed store. to give the injection what I do is use the keel bone as a guide. you DONT want it too close to the keel or too close to the wing so in the middle in the muscle. what I do is take a alcohol cotton and dab the area. this really helps part the feathers and expose the breast skin. once you clearly see the skin insert the needle. you can pull back on the needle and if blood appears then reposition. once no blood appears give the injection. making sure no air bubbles are in the needle before insertion. its really fast. its easier than it sounds. the alcohol gives you a nice clean view. I really hope this helps you out and I wish you the very best. if they were my birds I'd start the tylan50 as soon as possible. you should really see an improvement with it as its a much stronger antibiotic. Don't worry that bottle says for cattle.many many poultry owners use tylan for respiratory illness including myself. just dose according to the directions. it should get rid of your Symptoms pretty fast. hope this all helps. best of luck to you!
WestminsterHens, these birds have been outside now for almost 2 weeks. I am just pulling the sick ones in and putting them in the house. Realsis, thank you for the info. Will go to the store tomorrow morning and get Tylan50. I will also look up Corzya and see what that is.
Had to bring 2 more sick ones in this morning, now we are up to 4, with a total of 8 altogether for me. Got the Tylan50 this morning and treated sick birds with it. One of the birds is really raspy when he breathes, so will do VetRx in a vaporizer. The girl that bought some of these birds lost another one last night. :( I did read up on Corzya and not sure how birds are tested for it. The girl that bought 13 of these birds lives close to Cornell University, so I am thinking if there is a way of testing for Corzya, I would split the cost and have hers tested, if there is such a test.
I have 3 more sick ones and another dead one today. I guess because I have lost over half of the 30 birds, I should tell you that these birds came from a member on here who is still selling birds. I notified her the night we got them home they were sick and she then said, oh, after I got your email I checked mine and I have sick ones too, so it wasn't something I did or didn't do. She won't reply to my emails to her. I won't put her name on this post, but will tell anyone who pm's me who it is. I did notify the administrators on this site last week and never heard anything back. It has cost me a great deal of time and money to buy, transport and try to save these birds, only to have half of them die anyway. I don't want anyone else to have to go through the heartache of having to dispose of dead birds every time you go out to the coop and having sick pens full for almost a month now. I have never lost a bird bought from an auction or a hatchery from an illness.

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