Quail and Intestinal Worms—Any Ideas?

Discussion in 'Quail' started by le_bwah, May 26, 2019.

  1. le_bwah

    le_bwah Crowing

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    In the last two weeks, most of my hens have quit laying and one appears to be losing substantial weight—I don't have a scale but her keel is recently more prominent. I thought it was due to an overly aggressive rooster, but now I'm concerned it could be intestinal worms. All birds are eating, drinking, and preening (apparently) normally.

    I've isolated the skinny hen and I'll be able to check for worms via microscope tomorrow. I'll have goat wormer soon, I have a guide for diluting it, and I know how to administer the drug.

    Does wasting like this indicate worms :sick? Should I be looking more in the Marek's direction :hmm? I would really appreciate any thoughts, advice, or tips anyone has to offer. Thanks in advance.
     
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  2. 007Sean

    007Sean Pheasant Whisperer

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    Chickens and pheasants are more susceptible to Marek's. Very rarely seen in quail unless introduced in laboratory studies.
    Signs include weakness, paleness, feed refusal, diarrhoea, and blindness. There is paralysis or perisis (partial paralysis), which can be unilateral or bilateral in wings and/or legs, which causes one leg to stretch forward and the other backwards. Tumours and tremors occur.
    Is your quail exhibiting any of these signs other than the loss of weight?
    Does she appear 'fluffed up', sitting by herself, eyes closed? I would suspect UE before Marek's. A severe case of worm infestation could cause her to lose weight.
    Since you have said that you noticed it a week or so ago, it's not likely to be UE. Ulcerative enteritis usually causes mortality in 3 to 4 days and will spread incredible fast within a flock. If it were UE, erythromycin, oxytetracycline should be started ASAP.

    After conducting your fecal float exam, I would start with worming and see if there is improvement.
     
  3. le_bwah

    le_bwah Crowing

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    That info is wonderfully helpful! The hen I quarantined is still alive and active today—no sign of those Marek's symptoms, no fluffing up. If I can't confirm that it's worms and/or it progresses in a manner like UE, what is a good way to source antibiotics? Thank you!
     
  4. le_bwah

    le_bwah Crowing

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    So, no sign of worms or eggs in droppings. Might just be my technique or student-level microscopy, but it's still concerning. I intend to treat for worms on Tuesday, the soonest I can get a wormer, and follow that up shortly with a course of antibiotic.

    I think I'm gonna need to touch all bases here—I'd hate to lose the flock to whatever single thing I didn't treat for. Especially with more chicks on the way... :(
     
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  5. Tycine1

    Tycine1 Crowing

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    What type of quail? How's the sunlight situation there in Idaho this time of year? They need 14-16 hours daily to lay consistently. I'm glad that your skinny hen is isolated, should make these questions easier to answer. When did she lay last? Is she eating well and drinking well? How's her poop, watery or pretty much normal? Since you tested for worms and found none, nor eggs, would you consider antibiotics first instead? Dosage for quail is 10mg of Enrovet tablet once daily for 7 days is what I'd give her if she were my hen (25mg daily for chickens). Danofloxacin or Marbofloxacin are said to work better with quail but are not available at my feed store, so I've not used them. Be sure to ask your feed store about those options and the dosage. Enrovet's generic name is Enrofloxacin. Its use in birds is pretty much broad-spectrum. It's an antibacterial used as a treatment of digestive tract infections, respiratory tract infections, infections of the urinary and genital organs, cutaneous infections, infections of the external auditory canal; as small as quail are, that about covers everything, right? I sure hope your flock is okay, and hope your skinny girl gets to feeling better quick!
     
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  6. Tycine1

    Tycine1 Crowing

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    David, Chiriquí, Panama
    Forgot to ask, what are you feeding your quail? What percentage of their feed is protein? Does it have calcium in it and if not, are they getting calcium supplement on the side (oyster shell or egg shell or calcium supplement)? I ask because the BEST feed I can get for my quail is only 21% protein... a long term diet of this low protein diet would have serious health consequences for my birds, they'd slowly starve to death on it. I supplement it with ground up 30% protein, dry cat food.
     
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  7. le_bwah

    le_bwah Crowing

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    Thank you for the response!
    • They are Coturnix
    • These ones have laid well at around 12 hours daylight—although, we've just hit 15 in my area
    • Skinny hen hasn't laid an egg in over a week—I thought she was being bothered by an aggressive roo (who probably won't be a problem by next month)
    • Flock is fed 30% game bird feed during the spring and summer, and 26% feed during the fall and winter. I switched them over to the higher protein feed about three months ago.
    • Skinny hen eats treats readily, eats some food, and drinks regularly
    • Poop looks normal—seems somewhat undigested, but that may be because I've never examined it so closely before
    • Looks like Enrovet has the same active ingredient as Baytril, which seems to be prescription only in my area. Will check with feed stores, though.
    Thank you for the help! :hugs I think I'll worm them first—seems to fit their symptoms more closely. I'll also check with a vet's office about getting an antibiotic. My local feed stores don't open until tomorrow, but it can't hurt to see what they have on hand. :fl
     
  8. Tycine1

    Tycine1 Crowing

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    David, Chiriquí, Panama
    Sad to hear that it's prescription only in your area, and yes, same active ingredient as Baytril, I can buy it over the counter here. What about the other two, the ones I mentioned as being better for quail, Danofloxacin or Marbofloxacin? Long story short, the article I read on the subject said that these other two are better for the sole reason of being more easily metabolized by quail. Wouldn't hurt to see if they're available without a prescription.
    I am SO jealous of your high protein feeds! I want some. I want it now! I'm really worried about your skinny girl, but haven't more advice to offer so I'll pray instead.
     
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  9. le_bwah

    le_bwah Crowing

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    Yes, I'll ask about those two at the feed store. Thank you again for your help, and I really appreciate the kind thoughts. Also, I hope someone in your area is able to source and stock 30% feed soon, as it really is convenient.
     
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  10. 007Sean

    007Sean Pheasant Whisperer

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    Erythromycin and oxytetracycline are script from a vet. I think you can get Duramycin from TSC or other feed stores.
    If she hasn't died yet, then more than likely it isn't ulcerative enteritis.
     
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