Potentially serious outbreak - need help

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ShortHenTallPen, Dec 12, 2016.

  1. ShortHenTallPen

    ShortHenTallPen Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 18, 2015
    Ontario, Canada
    We are having a potentially serious issue and need urgent guidance. We have 18 grown chickens and added 15 Rhode Island reds in September. They grew fine with no losses and were healthy.They live in a barn, and have not been going outside for the last month due to predator attacks and the onset of cold weather. They grew fine with no losses and were healthy. About four weeks ago we moved our ducks and geese in the barn for winter, but they went to the other end of the barn and there is no contact between them.

    About week ago, I found one RIR dead... didn't think much of it, body was mangled and feeder had gotten stuck, thought it must have gotten cold and been attacked by its fellows. It is a very cold start to the winter here, so I was not surprised. In the last 48 hours now, disaster! 5 more are dead. We just find them dead, gunky eyes, watery liquid coming out their beaks. There is a whole lot of sneezing going on in the coop including my older birds and I'm suddenly in a real panic, looking at potentially having to call the vet and the chicken farmers association to look at getting my place inspected / potentially quarantined and my flock destroyed. Thoughts or ideas? Other symptoms include watery stools, rasping (darth Vador breathing) , but only in the Young's. The older ones all seem fine save for the sneezing.

    Other info, cold snap came in quite hard... went from nights at +2 to nights at minus 15. They're still laying well for time of year. Coop is sand, raked weekly for poop, no heat, water all the time, lay mash, 14 hours of light. Today I added a heat lamp and bedding cuz I thought the cold was the issue, but that was before we found 4 more dead.

    I don't mind dispatching them... done it before , we grow our own meaties... but somewhat scared .for their and my family's health. Thoughts?
     
  2. MasterOfClucker

    MasterOfClucker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 19, 2016
    Iowa
    Sounds like a respiratory disease.Which can be treated with Tylan 50.
     
  3. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Chicken Wrangler Premium Member

    Get them tested for AI. The timing of when the waterfowl came in is suspicious to me. They do not need direct contact to spread AI. A sparrow, your shoes, or a feed bucket can spread it.


    Good luck, better to be safe than sorry. Hopefully it will just be a cold.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2016
  4. ShortHenTallPen

    ShortHenTallPen Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 18, 2015
    Ontario, Canada
    Can I get that OTC or will I need to call I the vet? The local feed store carries tetracycline I believe? What is my timeline here - I reckon I'll lose all my RIRs but would hate to lose my older birds...

    Feel like a twit who should have picked this up days ago :(
     
  5. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Chicken Wrangler Premium Member

    I have no idea in Canada. Here in Minnesota, any NPIP tester can draw the sample, the state tests them. I know I have the blood tubes in my stuff.
     
  6. ShortHenTallPen

    ShortHenTallPen Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 18, 2015
    Ontario, Canada
    Interesting point about the waterfowl, they spent their summer in a pen outside enjoying life, no contact with wild birds that I can tell. The high rate of infection, sneezing and discharge sure could fit with AI but so many other things as well... I will call the vet here who does poultry and follow his lead.
     
  7. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Chicken Wrangler Premium Member



    That sounds like a prudent course.
     
  8. ShortHenTallPen

    ShortHenTallPen Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 18, 2015
    Ontario, Canada
    Update for those interested. Three birds getting an autopsy at the university's animal health lab; pending the result our vet is thinking MG and recommending the reset option: kill everything, disinfect, restart :(
     
  9. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Chicken Wrangler Premium Member


    That is bad, Sorry to hear. You seem to be taking it well. Good luck on whatever you decide to do.

    Did he give you an idea where it came from?

    Did the ducks bring it into the chickens?

    I mentioned I am a NPIP hatchery and tester. I check my turkeys every 90 days for MG. I am not required to check my chickens and never had, that would cost me a fortune and not be worth it. BUT I am going to ask about this and mention it at the next recertification meeting.

    I test for everything I can and am mildly surprised you got it without Turkeys, based on what they tell us. I do know ducks can bring in every disease known to poultry, at least that is what they tell us. They do not even want us having ducks with our breeders on the same farm. They prefer we not have them.

    Please continue to post whatever you learn and what you are doing. It will help educate the rest of us on what to do so we do not go through what you are. . Thanks and Good Luck!
     
  10. ShortHenTallPen

    ShortHenTallPen Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 18, 2015
    Ontario, Canada
    Not that well...it's pretty gutting to have to do the deed on sick birds. Even though I process my own meat birds, I always feel sad dispatching sick hens. On the plus side, this should finally allow us to turn the page on our broken start : we started with DC heritage poultry in shawville (https://www.backyardchickens.com/newsearch?search=DC+heritage&type=36) and always had the feeling the birds we got weren't healthy. If the mg theory holds, they probably carried it since the start.

    Most sad that there will be pressures to destroy our geese and ducks as well. Are there ways to test birds for MG? That way we could keep our geese at least.
     

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