POisened Chickens???

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Sylvia Moon, Nov 7, 2010.

  1. Sylvia Moon

    Sylvia Moon Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 6, 2010
    We had 7 free range hens, 3 older and 4 young ones. The 4 young ones free ranged far and wide, and had started going over my neighbors large property that is kept very well manicured, unlike our woodsy lot. She called me 3 days ago to chase them home, for the first time, which I did, then I took her some very fresh eggs, apologized, and we discussed a fence. 2 days later she called to say the hens were there again. I ran over to herd them back and noticed a truck saying PEST CONTROL. Finally got them home, not easy, but a couple hours later one was cold dead in the coop, and this morning another is dead. What could she have put out that would kill my poor girls?
    Anyone ever have chickens poisened?
    The worst part is I suspect it may have been intentional on her part. (But can't be sure, of course)

    Any suggestions? A fence, of course,
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 7, 2010
  2. Chicky Tocks

    Chicky Tocks [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2666.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG] Ru

    Oct 20, 2008
    Benton, Arkansas
    Oh most definately a fence! Sounds like she may have had some rat/mouse pellets dropped? Believe it or not, there are chicken haters out there. I don't understand the mentality though. Perhaps if the chickens were scratching up her flower beds or being destructive in their foraging...

    I'm just so lucky to have good neighbors. My chickens do occasionally cross the fence line when ranging, but the neighbors lot is wooded and besides, they stay right on the fenceline where all the good leaves are piled up to scratch in.
     
  3. Sylvia Moon

    Sylvia Moon Out Of The Brooder

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    I called her and told her of the 2 deaths since her pest man was there and asked for his number, to see what he used.
    She wouldn't give me his name or number, but said he would call me-- I'm waiting. She did say he was putting mouse bait, in stations. I don't know, maybe they died from nightshade or some other strange plant, but they were as fit as a fiddle yesterday morning. Very very sad.
     
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    She may have had her lawn treated for grubs, and your birds may have eaten the dead grubs. As Frost said "Good fences make for good neighbors."
     
  5. Sylvia Moon

    Sylvia Moon Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 6, 2010
    Yes, we are on our way out to get deer netting now. Can't afford a 150 yard fence--

    I just wonder what substance could knock them out so quickly?? Is grub poison so toxic to larger animals? I mean, a grub has not much body weight.
     
  6. mypicklebird

    mypicklebird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2008
    Sonoma Co, CA
    Just about any poison in a pellet or coated grain form would look very attractive to a chicken. Poisons come in many forms, but things that would kill mice, voles, rats, gophers ect could kill a chicken. Pest control people use different things depending on what species they are trying to kill- insecticides- for termites, ants, ect might harm a chicken if they got exposed to enough- but they can actually tolerate many insecticides fine- if not overdosed. Many chicken people intentionally put poisons/insecticides on their birds (I do) to kill lice or mites (carbaryl, pyrethins ect).

    If you still have the bodies- you can look in their crops (home necropsy) & gizzards- and see if there are colored grains present, or poison pellets. Most baits are brightly colored to identify them to people as being poison. If an anti-coagulant was used- there will be blood in places that there should not be blood (like free in the chest or abdomen).

    You could send one to your state lab as well if you want actual lab testing.

    You definitely need to keep your chickens on your property- fence or coop. It is horrible if your neighbor intentionally harmed them, but people can be pretty insane about their landscaping. People spend $$$ on plants, lawns, gardeners ect and to have a bunch of chickens come over and tear it up (mine are incredibly destructive- and they have been fenced out of our garden and the farmer's fields next door) would make many people very angry. IMO she should have talked to you and given you some sort of warning or ultimatum before doing anything besides chasing them back. Intentionally poisoning someone else's animals is horrible, and I really hope you do not have a neighbor this vindictive- but there are lots of people out there trapping and disposing of cats that dare to poop in their landscaping. I also just read about the people that paid for a trapper to catch up a bunch of neighbor hood ducks that were wrecking their landscaping.

    If I had someone else's critters getting into my garden or landscaping I would try to chase them back repeatedly and contact their owners repeatedly. If this did not get results- I might try to catch the animals to take them to the county shelter- but I know it would be next to impossible to catch a free ranging chicken or chickens.

    In my area people are being driven crazy over free ranging turkeys coming in and eating and scratching up & pooping on their gardens. People in the cities around here have been known to kill pigeons with grains laced with poison.

    I would speak to your neighbor again and explain being sorry for the chickens getting into her stuff, explain you are taking action to confine them, maybe offer to help fix any thing they messed up, then ask again about what was used around her property- if she paid for the service- the bill should have what chemical was used. If it was an anti-coagulant in pellet form, any bird that ate this stuff may die in a day to two weeks. Vit K in high doses is the treatment. Be sure to say you know the birds were where they shouldn't be, and you are not planning to sue her or something, you just want to help your birds if they have been exposed. She does not want to give you the information probably because she if afraid you are looking for proof they ate poison, and will be asking for compensation or something. Frame it right so she knows you are trying to help the birds, not come after her- maybe she will be more forthcoming.

    Good luck. Bad blood between neighbors sucks, hope you can figure out what happened and help the remaining birds, and hope fences go up so nothing bad happens again---
     
  7. Sylvia Moon

    Sylvia Moon Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 6, 2010
    I had a long talk with her, and found out that her rodent bait is carefully done and not chicken accessible, so perhaps it is grub or mole stuff they ate, or toxic fertilizer. Her lawn crew is out to bill her to the max, that is obvious. Since she has well water, I suggested she discuss with them what they use, as she could be poisoning her own water also.
    I don't think she did this on purpose, the birds had only been spotted there twice and had done no damage, and she isn't a monster- just a bit cranky from time to time. She seemed genuinely disturbed by the whole thing, too.

    But that won't bring back my dear Miss Birdie and Hannah!

    We added 7' deer netting to their pen and they are in jail now, not so happy. (Their pen is plenty large, but since they have been used to 2 acres, plus the neighbors and the nature preserve next door, it seems like prison to them.

    Maybe I will look into wing clipping? That may contain them a bit?
     
  8. dsqard

    dsqard Crazy "L" Farms

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    Wing clipping will only keep them from going over a fence. It doesn't keep them from wandering. Sorry to hear about the loss of your birds [​IMG] and I am glad to hear that the neighbor didn't do this on purpose. Hopefully things will stay good between you since bad neighbors really do suck.
     
  9. Sylvia Moon

    Sylvia Moon Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 6, 2010
    Yea, wing clipping and more fencing together I think will be the only way-
    The 3 older hens never left the property, but the young ones are more adventurous, and now 2 are dead.
    I did so like to have free-range hens, though......
     
  10. Sylvia Moon

    Sylvia Moon Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 6, 2010
    I also gave them some leftover grits with blue cheese, (to keep them close to home) would that be bad for hens?
    They ate quite a lot of it.....
     

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