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Questions about Infectious Coryza

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Laurobee13, Feb 20, 2017.

  1. Laurobee13

    Laurobee13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 1, 2012
    Clermont, GA
    Hello BYC folks!

    I *know* that the easiest answer to most of my problems right now would be to cull my entire flock and start over. However, I have a possible solution, but I need some answers first before I move forward with my plan.

    Some background:
    Bought new property in North Georgia, moved entire farm from Colorado. Had a few health incidents in Colorado, but nothing like what happened after being in our new place in GA after a year. So, right when we moved in (August 2015), we put our chickens in the onsite coop - and the next day discovered two dead birds from previous owner that had been hiding (we didn't get to GA until PM when we moved - no lights in the coop, lesson #1 learned). Quickly removed the dead birds - but honestly, things were so hectic after the move, I don't remember throwing them away - although I'm sure we did as we didn't have a compost established yet etc. Cleaned out the coop real well, sprayed it down, etc and chickens were happy for about 6+months. Spring of 2016, we got a chicken lice problem, and lost a few birds to anemia etc and honestly, now looking back, who knows what else? But only symptom then was the itching/visible lice. We treated it naturally, lice went away, everybody happy. Then summer hits, and suddenly one bird has foamy eye in just one eye, and what at the time I thought was just a cold. Treated it - and she was happy as a clam with no symptoms, and then two weeks later dead in the morning. Another bird got the same thing and died as well (my favorite of all time, my very first chicken, miss her dearly RIP Betty). That's when I started panicking and actually researching. Those two birds had been in a separate coop, so my main flock was still good. No more symptoms from any of my birds though, until maybe 4 months later (Novemberish) - and suddenly it seemed like a quarter of my birds were sick, some far worse than others and with way more symptoms than just foamy eye. I have concluded the most likely culprit is Infectious Coryza. I treated multiple ways, even did antibiotics (I try to do everything 100% natural/organic when able), lost a few despite the treatment, but it's been two months now with no symptoms and they have begun laying again.

    Here's where my questions come in, that I haven't found a solid answer for online. I plan on calling a poultry vet this week too.
    1. Can IC live in the soil? If yes, how long and in what conditions?
    2. Do birds need to be showing symptoms in order to shed the virus and pass it to others?
    3. Do wild birds, guineas, or turkeys get IC?


    My truly biggest concern is not knowing where my ladies got this illness from. We only introduced 6 new birds, all adult, all from the same place at the same time, all visibly healthy that we know of. At least none of these girls showed anything until this past December, and they weren't the first ones to show signs. There's so many farms around here, and I know it could have been on clothes, my shoes from the feed stores, etc.

    My plan instead of culling, is to build a chicken tractor to keep them all in as a closed flock in my horse pastures. I'm going to turn the old coop into a large rabbit hutch/colony. And I'm building a new coop in my garden that I will get new birds in.

    Any sources for info would be greatly appreciated!!
     
  2. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

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    Mar 27, 2012
    Vermont
    My Coop
    Whatever it is likely came in on those new birds you brought in. They can look as healthy as a horse and yet be carrying these things. Or it could have been from other farms etc if you were walking around there and then went home and cared for your birds without changing clothes or shoes; clothing and shoes can both act as fomites.

    How did you conclude it was IC? Did you have a necropsy done? A lot of other diseases show the same signs. I wouldn't do anything until you have a necropsy done to find out what you have for sure, including treating with antibiotics.

    Just to let you know going forward, chickens don't get colds, they only get respiratory diseases like the one you're dealing with.

    I'm sorry you're having this trouble, I know it's not fun.

    To answer your other questions, no, as far as I know wild birds don't get coryza and I don't think guineas do either. Chickens are its natural host. It can survive for some time out of the birds in the environment so if you do choose to cull I'd wait a while before bringing new birds in to be safe.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. Laurobee13

    Laurobee13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 1, 2012
    Clermont, GA
    Thanks for the reply Pyxis!
    1. I now know chickens don't get colds, just wasn't something I had come across and stupidly didn't do my research [​IMG]
    2. I've been back to the same women I got those 6 birds from, didn't see any sick birds, and we talked to her about it and I think she's an honest woman. But who knows???
    3. I concluded it was IC due to the following symptoms:
    -foamy eyes
    -wheezing/raspy sounds all the time/sneezing
    -the smell coming from the nostrils/face was disgusting
    -swollen faces/sores on wattles etc

    Whatever other symptoms they had at the time - the only thing that matched all of them was IC. But even if it isn't IC, I don't think it is something curable, ya know? Whatever it is, they are stuck with it I'm sure.

    Any thoughts on what else it might be?

    And no I did not do a necropsy, but I think I might get blood drawn from one of my surviving girls that I know had at the very least the foamy eye symptom.

    I AM worried though about the soil situation as I did bury some of my chickens in the compost before realizing that was a no no. So if it can live in soil for more than a few days, I need to know just how long, to know whether I can put my compost in the garden where the new birds will go.
     
  4. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

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    My Coop
    With the horrible smell it does point at coryza, for sure :( So I guess what you'd have to decide is whether you want a closed flock that gets sick from time to time and has to be treated or if you just want to cull and start fresh.

    I'm trying to see if I can turn up any info about how long it can live in the soil outside of the birds. I know with Mycoplasma it can actually be a few months, but I'm not sure how long coryza can live.
     
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Pyxis has given you good advice. From what I have read from The Poultry Site and Merck Vet Manual, mycoplasma and coryza will only last 3 days on equipment, shoes, clothes, hair, etc, after the chickens are gone. There are other diseases such as ILT and others that may last months in droppings.It's very important to get a necropsy on any dead chickens, to identify what is going on, since there can be more than one disease going around. Burn any carcasses or remove them from your property if they are not foing to be tested.
     
  6. Laurobee13

    Laurobee13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 1, 2012
    Clermont, GA
    The little I have found says it can live 2-5 days without a host - and that was usually in reference to coops, clothes, waterers and feeders. So I have to assume it's the same for in the soil? I'm hoping a poultry vet might know.
     

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