The girls are eating like no tomorrow!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by juleeque, Dec 31, 2016.

  1. juleeque

    juleeque Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't understand why my hens (approx 35) are eating so much! My girls free range and get laying pellets. But I'm going through at least 2-3x as much food as I was. They have full crops and are still looking for more food. I don't want to overfeed them, but could this be a sign of worms? I have never wormed them, but then I have never seen worms in the poop. If it's time I do worm them, I've read to avoid wazine (?), but don't remember the one that is more gentle on them? After I worm them, if that is the direction I should go, do I discard all the eggs? And if so, for how long? Can I feed those eggs to my dogs?
    thx Julie
     
  2. juleeque

    juleeque Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh, also, the girls are plump and beautiful, no weight loss (except for the ones who are molting and look thinner b/c of feather loss), the only ones who have dull wattles and top are those who no longer lay due to age)
     
  3. TheTwoRoos

    TheTwoRoos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Chickens eat a lot...
    Doubt it's worms, just greedy hens.But,it never hurts to worm them just once to be extra safe.
     
  4. GingersHuman

    GingersHuman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Interested to hear some opinions...
     
  5. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    How cold is it where you are? Chickens tend to eat more when it is cold out, since they need more energy to stay warm.

    Also, how old are they, and how long have they been laying (or were laying before they started molting)?
     
  6. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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  7. juleeque

    juleeque Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I live in SW Arkansas, not too terribly cold. I do have heat lamps in the coops. Right now they get a 16% laying pellets, I'd have to check if my farmers co-op has a higher protein content. I make flock blocks for them that has meal worms, eggs, sunflower seeds, flax and so forth. I give them one on occasion, but could I give them more of that? My girls are anywhere between 3 yo and 9 mo old. Some are done laying, some just started laying a a few months ago.

    I read somewhere on BYC that Wazine was hard on them (I don't remember hard how), but that some other brand was better.

    I guess it would be best to take a sample in to vet. If a chicken gets worms, is it safe to say they all have worms? If chickens have worms, aside from seeing worms in the poop, would the poop have any other characteristics? Do I take samples that look different?
     
  8. BeachMomma

    BeachMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Why heat lamps in the coop may I ask? There's no reason to use them unless it's to acclimate babies.
    (It's more detrimental to use supplemental heat on adult birds. They have down feathers to keep them warm and if they have a well ventilated proper coop they'll have no problem keeping warm even in subzero temps)
     
  9. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Generally chickens as old as yours do not require heat in winter. Can I ask, are the heat lamps on at night and emit light? If so, this is most likely where your extra feed consumption is going. If chickens have light in the middle of the night, they are going to be up and eating, if food is available. If they have light all night and no food, then they will be starving by morning.

    Call your vet to see how they want samples taken. It is best to have the poop tested for worms. While it's possible your problem could be parasites, I would look into your housing arrangement first.

    While a flock block makes a fine treat, usually it would not be advisable to increase the amount you give. As a general rule treats should not be more than 5-10% of their daily intake.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2017

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