Respiratory illness...Laryngotracheitis and new chicks

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chickengrl, Feb 12, 2011.

  1. chickengrl

    chickengrl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 30, 2010
    Northern Virginia
    Hello chicken folks,
    I have a really awful problem that we are going to have to decide on what we do. My grown flock of chickens have become very sick with a respiratory illness and we have already lost my favorite blue copper Marans rooster, Elvis, to it. He was dead within 2 days of us even realizing he was sick. [​IMG] The flock came from various places including a very reputable breeder (NPIP, AI, MG free), the Virginia Poultry breeders show, a local lady from Craig's list (young pullets), and from a poultry swap(will never, ever go to one again). Yeah, I know and would like to beat myself up over all that we have done wrong. Just didn't know better starting out. The birds from the show we actually did quarantine for 30 days and they were fine and we integrated them with the flock. These were 4 Sumatras and they are fine, at least for now. The birds have all been together and seemingly healthy for about 6 weeks. Some have been together for several months without sign of illness. We had thought we had gotten lucky and had vowed to ourselves to hatch our own, or get day old birds only from now on, but it was too late. [​IMG]

    The symptoms of the illness are:
    head shaking/head scratching
    gurgling/wheezing-lots of mucous
    difficulty breathing-wide open beak
    not eating/drinking well
    very swollen around the eyes-one girl even swollen shut
    foamy/gooyey eye mucous
    sneezing/coughing
    no odd odor noticed-actually today noticed an off odor from hen while i was cleaning her eyes
    manure seems normal
    death in one bird-comb was getting bluish before he died
    blood spatter around dead bird...we realize now that it is a sign of ILT

    We are currently treating with Tylan 50 subcutanously (starting giving IM, learned that SQ was prefered) 0.5 cc everyday x 5-7 days. I am planning on taking a bird to our county extension for testing and necropsy. I really want to know what this is so I can treat it properly. Also, I believe that if it is MG, it will be carried through the egg. right? It will be Monday (2/14) before I can get the bird there. What do you think we are dealing with?

    So, several issues we need advice on here:
    I realize that one option is cull the flock.....do we cull the birds that seem healthy too? Are they healthy because they were already carriers? Do you keep birds that seem to have mild symptoms and recover?

    We have 10 chicks incubated and now being brooded in the basement. I have 2 more incubators running that will hatch in about 10 days and 2 weeks. I also have chicks and more eggs on the way early in March. Will we be able to add these birds to our flock when the older birds seem to be well? Or am I just giving this disease to them? Should I just sell these chicks ASAP and get them away from this illness? (we wanted to keep them originally) Should I cancel the eggs and chicks that are coming in march?

    We also have 2 bantam Japanese that have lived in the basement since we bought them at the bird show. They seem to be healthy. How can I be sure they don't have it to? We had let them outside with us when it was warm (can't seem to remember the last time that was) but they were not really mingling with the other flock all that much but did have a look at each other rather briefly. These bantams are in the same large basement as the brooder, but are about 15 feet away in their own pen.

    We are just heartbroken. I had wanted to raise some rare breeds and hopefully sell a few here and there more as a hobby not a real business. I just can't sell someone sick animals. We are pretty attached to some of the birds we have now. They are somewhere between pets and livestock for us. So what can we do? Are we as doomed as I think we are? Any advice is appreciated. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2011
  2. breezes_banties_n_bratts

    breezes_banties_n_bratts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 1, 2011
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    you can get a vaccine for the new arrivals or chicks, but i would get them all around the same time cuz the vaccine comes in a bottle of a 1000 doses, its not real cheap either. here is the site i got off someone here and it wont treat the birds already infected

    http://www.firststatevetsupply.com/stor … 4f3c3872fc


    i had to cull my flock, disinfect my barn and start over, but im still going to vaccinate any and all chicks i get for this and coryza, to be on the safe side. good luck and i hope this helps
     
  3. breezes_banties_n_bratts

    breezes_banties_n_bratts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 1, 2011
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    they may appear heathly, but still may be carriers. i would look up MG or infectious coryza and maybe that will help you get a better idea on what it is..note im not an expert, just trying to help, maybe someone who knows more will peep in and be able to help u better
     
  4. ODS-n-ENS FARM

    ODS-n-ENS FARM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 16, 2008
    NH
  5. breezes_banties_n_bratts

    breezes_banties_n_bratts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    just a question, thats just for mg and not coryza right, im still learning all this and thats what i think i read.
     
  6. ODS-n-ENS FARM

    ODS-n-ENS FARM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 16, 2008
    NH
  7. breezes_banties_n_bratts

    breezes_banties_n_bratts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 1, 2011
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    so hopefully they wont have to worry about it if its that. thanks i didnt think so
     
  8. chickengrl

    chickengrl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 30, 2010
    Northern Virginia
    I am pretty sure that only MG passes through the egg. So, if i understand correctly if you immunize against MG and they are already infected (like supposedly most backyard flocks are) you will not really get rid of it, just hopefully prevent the bird from getting visibly sick. Does that sound correct? Sort of like humans with herpes infection. You may not have symptoms because you stay on an anti-viral medication, but you still have the virus. Thanks all for input. Any other thoughts out there?
     
  9. pips&peeps

    pips&peeps There is no "I" in Ameraucana

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    Jan 18, 2008
    Newman Lake, WA
    The first thing you need to do is send a bird in for necropsy and find out what it is that is killing your birds. MG generally does not kill; ILT will. Just wait until you get the results back before you decide anything.

    The second thing is, there are no backyard breeders or hobby farmers that are MG free. There is no classification for an MG free flock for Subpart E. The way to be MG free is to have 100% of your birds tested every three months.

    Wild birds are a vector for many diseases including MG; keep them far away from your chickens.
     
  10. chickengrl

    chickengrl Chillin' With My Peeps

    710
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    Sep 30, 2010
    Northern Virginia
    Thanks Pips and Peeps,
    I am for sure going to do the necropsy. I really want to know what this is. Do you think it sounds more like ILT or coryza? The breeder we got the birds from was Whitmore Farms in Maryland. I guess he is way more than a hobby breeder/farmer. He still has on his website that he is MG free. I think he may actually get them tested every several months. Not sure how he manages keeping them clean since he also pasture raises them. An awesome, natural way to keep happy chickens IMHO. They even warned me that the chickens we bought might get sick since they had not been around it. It does seem to be hitting the Marans and Ameraucanas especially hard. Would like to avoid culling if possible, but not wanting a flock where I cannot bring more birds in. thanks again, Stacy [​IMG]
     

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