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Sick 10wk old pullets?Possible Mareks?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BeccaSmith, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. BeccaSmith

    BeccaSmith Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just introduced the new batch to the adult coop today (they have been in a large brooder until today), they are in a temporary pen where they can get some exposure to the adults for several weeks before we combine them when they are of adequate size. It is pretty warm in the coop, about 80 and I know it is stressful for them to move to a new area. We have one roo in the new batch that we bought to keep the girls happy, noticed today that he isn't putting weight on his toes and his legs are very wobbly and his feet turn in when walking. I'm thinking from previous readings that this could be Mareks perhaps? Wanted to get some other opinions before doing anything darastic. Also noticed one of the other pullets in the new batch is holding her tail down and almost looks like she could be walking funny as well, but she has feathered feet so it is hard to tell. I'm hoping perhaps they are just warm, thirsty (they discovered their water after an hour), and stressed, but the little roosters legs seems pretty bad. He has eaten, but hasn't taken a drink. We didn't notice this before while he was in the brooder, would stress bring something like Mareks disease on? Not the cause of it, but for the symptoms to appear if that haven't been seen before? He seemed fine yesterday, and so did the other pullet. Very concerned on what to do, remove the two from the group? Will it spread to the others, and possibly to our adults even thought they are separated by a wired fencing? What should I do?
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  2. BeccaSmith

    BeccaSmith Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The more I read, the more I am convinced the roo has Mareks. I forgot to mention he is having problems holding his wings in normal position. Should we remove the complete batch from the coop and cull the entire batch to save our adult hens or the ones not showing signs safe to leave? The complete batch is 13 total, we would hate to lose them all with all the work we have put into them, but we don't want to lose our 6 adults either. The adults have been out free ranging and haven't had any exposure at this point, all though I am sure the new batch of chickens have their dander spread around the coop in the temporary pen and not sure if removing them would help at this point? Please help!
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  3. Aeropennchick

    Aeropennchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If your birds were vaccinated for marek's, you may not have to cull them all. But don't let the new ones mix with your old ones, take out the roo, and try to get him tested.
     
  4. Aeropennchick

    Aeropennchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am super worried about Marek's even though there haven't been any cases in my area, and the local vets do not recommend vaccination for small backyard flocks. But I only have vaccinated birds, that's a deal breaker for me.
     
  5. Aeropennchick

    Aeropennchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So sorry!! I hope it's something else!
     
  6. BeccaSmith

    BeccaSmith Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We did not buy them vaccinated because our current adults were not vaccinated and read it wasn't necessary for small backyard flocks. I thought about it with this 2nd batch but read it was not recommended if your existing flock had not been vaccinated against it. Does anyone who has any experience with Marek's have any input? We have taken the roo out of the temporary pen in the coop. I'm so heart broken!
     
  7. BeccaSmith

    BeccaSmith Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am also wondering if this could be botulism? While in the brooder (a large 110 gallon stock tank) we changed their food and water out twice daily, but they would always knock their food and water over onto the bedding. We use wood pellets for bedding, when it get's wet, it turns into sawdust and could have gotten moldy. But I'm not sure wobbly legs fit botulism? Could stress and heat cause super wobbly legs and droopy wings? The other pullet I am concerned about mainly just has a droopy tail and seems to lay/sit more then the other pullets. I can't really see any issues with her feet, but she almost looked like she was walking stiff legged, the rooster was wobbly not stiff legged, and it also looked like he wasn't putting his weight on his toes, just the pad of his feet, could it just be his legs are just to big for him and he is wobbly? Yes I am really digging deep for him to not be sick! I have him quarantined right now, hubby is ready to cull him as soon as I give the word. He's lonely on his own!
     
  8. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    I think the first thing I would do is treat for coccidiosis. They sound like they're sick, or heat stressed.

    Aside from that, were they in the sun too long? I doesn't sound like Marek's, unless they can't use the leg or legs at all.

    It's too late to do anything if its Marek's. I've separated the sick ones , and also did not, and there was no difference, my 10 chicks last summer all died. Once they're exposed, they are exposed.

    Vaccinating. There is alot of mis information out there.

    Vaccinate all your day old chicks for Marek's or buy them from a hatchery already vaccinated. Quarantine those chicks for 6-12 weeks. (I do 8-10).

    Vaccinated birds will not give unvaccinated birds Marek's-from the vaccine. But if vaccinated birds are exposed to Marek's, they can carry it and spread it, but won't die from it Edit: Vaccinated birds will hopefully not die from the virus.

    Most unvaccinated adults have resistance as they get older.

    Vaccinate no matter how small your flock is. If you have a flock, and add more, you may introduce Marek's to your flock. Or your flock may have it and you will not know. There's no way to tell except by necropsy.

    I hope it's something else.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  9. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Seminolewind...I agree with all your points except for one. Vaccinated chicks can and do die from Marek's. They simply do not develop the tumors that accompany the disease. I have lost in the last week alone 5 vaccinated birds. I don't really know what's happening...since warm weather, my birds are once again dropping like flies. Vaccinated and unvaccinated alike. I am right now just sick. No matter what I do, they just keep dying [​IMG]

    I keep vaccinating since there isn't anything else that I can do and I keep hoping that like the big hatcheries, I will manage to wipe this out of my flock by vaccinating.
     
  10. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    Leadwolf, you are right. Marek's vaccine is not a guarantee. Out of 24 chicks I did, I did lose one. I hope you get some peace soon. I know you've been going thru this a long time.
     

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