Sick Mountain quail.. *UPDATE* 2 now dead.. 1 sick.. afraid the rest will soon follow.. help please

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by vhc771, Sep 29, 2012.

  1. vhc771

    vhc771 New Egg

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    Sep 29, 2012
    CO
    **UPDATE #3**
    Thursday 10/4
    Big update...read this first...see this post

    I raise a small flock of Bobwhite quail and a small flock of Mountain quail in two pens side by side and 6 days ago on Monday I found one of my female Bobwhites dead inside the pen and I took it to a vet to get a necropsy done to see if they could determine the cause of death. The vet said the bird had kidney failure/visceral gout and that its gizzard was packed with what looked like tiny seeds, similar to millet seeds or canary seeds. The vet also said the bird was thin, the kidneys were calcified, and it looked like the bird had too much protein. They found nothing infectious and tested a stool sample of the Bobwhite and it came back negative for worms etc

    I haven't fed them any seeds, tiny or otherwise, so i dont know where the quail picked them up or why only the one was seemingly affected at the time. Theyre in an outdoor pen on the ground with trees around them so i thought maybe something could have fallen from the trees that the bird ate too much of, but theyve been in that same pen for 2 years now and this is the first time ive ever had a problem like this. They had dust baths in the pens as well and I thought the bird may have eaten bits of sand or pebbles from that so I removed the dust baths just in case, but other than that I kept everything the same, other than cleaning the waterers out.

    Now 6 days later I found one of my Mountain quail (also a female) inside on the floor not moving, with her head under her wing like she was asleep. Ive had the Mountain quail for 2 years as well and have never seen them asleep during the day and also never seen them not move when I approach them or make noise. I made all kinds of noise but still couldnt get this one to move and thought she might be dead until I touched her and she got up and walked around some. Her wings were droopy and her eyes were squinty and half closed as she walked around and she looks bloated or like her feathers are puffed out. I did see her briefly peck at her food a few times though. After a minute or two she stopped moving and put her head back under her wing again.

    I picked her up and brought her inside the house and put her in a rabbit hutch with some straw and she hasn't moved from the spot where I put her down. Her head is back under her wing again and the only way I can get her to move her head is by touching her, and even then she won't walk around any more and only looks up briefly before narrowing her eyes and trying to sleep again. I put a dish of water in there and some bits of melon and cauliflower leaves since I read that fruit can be good for birds with visceral gout but I haven't seen her touch either of them. Here's a picture of how she looks now:


    [​IMG]

    I called the vet who said to try to give her liquids with an eyedropper and also is making an antibiotic that I'll go and pick up and give to her. What else should I do though? I only have a few of these birds so I really dont want to lose any...

    As for the rest of the quail, both mountains and bobwhites...before this Ive only ever had 2 quail die on me and those deaths were both over a year ago, so to have the one die and another in the pen next to it become sick like this makes me think this is not coincidence and that the rest of the birds may soon follow suit. What can I do to protect the rest? I dont know what caused this so I dont know what to do differently...the only two things that have changed recently have been some new evergreen branches that I put in both pens about a month ago that I picked up from the branch pile at the town dump and giving them food from a new bag of feed (still the same kind Ive always used before though). I dont know what kind of tree the branches came from (pine, spruce, hemlock, fir etc...) but they look a little different than the ones Ive used in the past and Ive seen the quail peck at them so I dont know if maybe thats whats causing this but I'll remove them today just in case. As for the feed, there could be something off in the new bag or maybe excess moisture got in there with the change in weather so I'll be getting a new bag of feed as well. What else should I do for the rest of the quail? Any tests I can do to check if theyre alright (they appear normal and fine by eye) or anything I should do or change to keep them from getting sick or dying as well?

    Thanks so much for any help...

    **UPDATE**
    Saturday 9/29, 4:15PM
    Just checked on my other quail and while the Bobwhites seem to be behaving normally, I noticed that two of my other Mountain quail are now acting similarly to the sick one...they're moving around a lot more, but every so often they'll stop and stay in one place and kind of sink down with their feathers puffed out and they'll close or narrow their eyes...they did eat some clover I just picked for them, but they're definitely noticeably different than the other Mountain quail. I'm afraid whatever's wrong with the sick bird may also be wrong with at least those two as well...any advice would be really great.
    Still not much change with the sick bird inside in the rabbit hutch, she still hasn't moved but her head is no longer under her wing and her eyes are half-open now.

    **UPDATE #2**
    Sunday 9/30, 1:55PM
    See first reply in this thread
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2012
  2. vhc771

    vhc771 New Egg

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    Sep 29, 2012
    CO
    Sad news...the Mountain quail that I brought inside yesterday died about 5 hours after I made this thread. I put the bird in a bag and put in the refrigerator and will drive it up to the University Veterinary Lab for a necropsy when they re-open on Monday, but until I get the results I still don't know what caused this...

    And more sad news... As I mentioned in the first update, two others seemed to be exhibiting similar symptoms and appeared more puffed up than the other quail, weren't moving around as much, and would occasionally stand in place and narrow or close their eyes. One of the two that looked sick was definitely more active than the other. After the first quail died I brought those two inside and put them in the rabbit hutch where the other had been. I got the antibiotic Baytril from the vet and was instructed to give it to the sick birds with an eyedropper as well as a 50% Dextrose solution (sugar water). I gave it to them last night and checked on them again this morning and they were both still alive, but the one bird still wasn't moving around very much. The other was making chirping noises and moved around the cage when I reached in to change the food. I checked back an hour later and the less active one was dead.

    So two of my Mountain quail have died within 12 hours of each other after exhibiting similar symptoms and the deaths come a week after one of the Bobwhites in the adjacent pen died...I don't know what else I should be doing at this point. It's sunday so the vet is closed and Im afraid the rest of my remaining birds are going to succumb to whatever killed the first 3. I spent about 8 hours last night completely cleaning out their indoor coop, thoroughly washing all the surfaces, feeders and waterers with a bleach solution and then giving them new bedding but I dont know if that will help or not. I also put a small amount of Baytril in the water for both the Bobwhites and the remaining Mountain quail as the vet instructed...its supposed to be a preventative measure for the remaining flock. Can anyone else offer some input or ideas? Right now my two big concerns are how to save the remaining birds and also what should be done with the one "sick" bird in the rabbit hutch...that bird seemed off compared to the rest when I watched them last night, but is still far more active than the two that died were, so I'm worried she might not be sick but will pick up whatever the other two had by remaining in the small rabbit hutch that the other two died in. On the other hand, I don't want to re-introduce her to the flock and have her potentially infect them as well if she is sick. Again, any help or ideas? Thanks a lot
     
  3. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    I know quail can be very sensitive. Most times that my friend had trouble with them was when they were on the ground..and it was normally worm related. How they are acting, if it were a chicken I would think worms or coccidia..but you said the one vet checked the bobwhite......hummm.
    Try posting this over in the quail forum too and see if anyone has an idea and has delt with it before... I wish I had an answer. I always wanted mountain quail and I know how pricy they are to lose.... :(
     
  4. vhc771

    vhc771 New Egg

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    Sep 29, 2012
    CO
    I made a thread about this on the quail forum here that has more info.

    Now, for the update...

    7 of my 9 Mountain quail have died since I made this thread 5 days ago. As of my last update, two had died and one was still sick. I moved the other sick one out of the rabbit hutch and into a dog crate in another room...it was much more active and seemed to be getting better, but that night I found it sprawled out in the crate, spasming in what I assume were death throes. It was dead a few minutes later. The next day I took the three dead birds to a veterinary lab for necropsy and that same day I noticed yet another of the remaining healthy Mountain quail in the outside pen exhibiting similar symptoms...I brought her inside, gave her the Baytril twice a day, but 24 hours later she had died too. Two more Mountain quail followed suit and died as well, leaving only 3 birds remaining.

    I decided to take all 3 remaining birds out of the pen, even though they looked fine, just to remove them from that environment. I brought them inside and put two in one container and one in another and kept them in the same room. That was on Monday night (Oct 1st), and up until this morning (Thursday Oct 4th) all 3 seemed perfectly fine. Last night I got the results from the necropsy and found out that it was Ulcerative Enteritis that killed the others. The vet said to give the 3 remaining Mountain quail Amoxicillin to treat the enteritis and to give the flock of Bobwhites Bacitracin in their water as a preventative measure. This morning all 3 quail still seemed fine, then about an hour and a half later one of them had his eyes closed and was laying down...I went to the vet to pick up the Amoxicillin and brought the sick quail with me and they gave him an injection of Amoxicillin but he died just before leaving the vet's office...so of my 9 Mountain quail I'm now down to just 2 birds left. [​IMG]

    Details about the medicine I have for them/the medicine I've ordered and my questions about what to do next are all in this thread on the quail board...I could still very much stand some help with this so any info or advice either in that thread or this one it would be great..thanks again
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2012

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