swollen eyes and lethargic dying chickens (pics)

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by browning6, Aug 27, 2014.

  1. browning6

    browning6 Chirping

    Dec 2, 2012
    Winton, California
    I have a bunch of 10 to 16 week old birds that are coming down with some interesting symptoms. And i have no idea what i am up against.

    They usually start with infected eyes. some of their eyes crust shut, some ooze and others swell. I will include pics at the end.

    then they get really lethargic. they get weak and wobble as if they are going to loose their balance and fall down. Most that are severly infected with these symptoms die within a couple weeks of the onset. I have a total of about 175 birds and i have lost about 8 so far.


    this gals eye is oozing some sort of serum that looks to have blood in it.


    this is how she was laying after she fell over. about an hour later she got up and gingerly wobbled into the coop.


    this aracuana rooster i was given by a friend. he was here about 3 weeks and developed this swollen eye, (only on one side) and is super lethargic. I can walk out and pick him up almost anytime.

    Any thoughts on diagnosis and treatment
  2. Pinkaboo

    Pinkaboo Songster

    May 12, 2014
    Cornwall in the UK
    No but I'd get some general antibiotics into them
    If you can afford the vets can take a swab and find out what it is
    And if they will be carriers if they survive
    Hopefully antibiotics might help
  3. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Crowing

    If you have another one die, or if you are willing to sacrifice one, the Turlock Poultry Pathology Lab by the fairgrounds in Turlock is not too far from you if you are in Winton. It would be well worth the trip to take one in for necropsy. Or contact them about sending one Fed Ex though it's probably easier to just take it in. They will be able to tell you exactly what this is which would be a very good idea since you have so many birds.
  4. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    A few years ago I lost some 8 week chicks to enteritis. When that stopped, 5 got a one eye infection and died! They didn't look as bad as yours. I did put them on Tylan and it controlled it. One that survived still has a "softer" looking eye.
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    You probably have one of the respiratory diseases in your flock, such as mycoplasma gallisepticum (MG or CRD,) and those can be complicated by other secondary infections. Is there a bad odor from the sick birds? It would be worth sending a bird in to your state vet for a necropsy to find out what is causing this, and it is free in California. It's fairly common to get these things when getting birds of differing ages from multiple sources. Drugs such as Tylan50 injection, oxytetracycline, and Gallimycin may help treat symptoms of MG, and Sulfadimethoxine (Di-Methox) or Sulmet may help treat coryza. This disease probably has made carriers of your flock, but I would separate the sick birds. New birds should always be quarantined for at least 30 days or more. Here is a link to read more about the respiratory diseases: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps044
    Here is a link about a necropsy: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/799747/how-to-send-a-bird-for-a-necropsy-pictures
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2014
  6. browning6

    browning6 Chirping

    Dec 2, 2012
    Winton, California
    Thanks for all the great tips.

    I will try to get some oral antibiotics in them. I have taken birds to the state clinic to be necropsied and they found nothing on both birds. the only thing they found was a little higher concentrations of salt in the brain. so he thought I had some bad feed. But i feed the same feed as my neighbor a couple miles down the road and his birds are fine.

    SO i dont know. I will try the antiobiotics and report back in a week.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: