Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by centrarchid, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    I have been experiencing and reading posts describing what may be Mareks disease. It appears to me accounts have jumped up markedly over last 3 months or so. Is this something others have noted? If yes, does it happen every year?

    I am concerned an epidemic may be underway.
  2. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

    Apr 15, 2009
    I think that problems posted here tend to be cyclical in nature. There are times when I answer the same questions regarding the same problems several times in one week, and then don't see that problem again for months on end.

    Yes, there have been a lot of Marek's-indicative problems recently, but I think that they tend to crop up in clusters. Marek's is pretty common. A little side story- Recently, someone posted on here (in exasperation) "Why does everyone always assume that every problem is Marek's?" I think I responded at the time "Because the signs are indicating that the problems may indeed be Marek's." The poster never commented further, but it does show that at that point in time there were several posts on this forum that related to Marek's or Marek's-like illnesses.

    I think a way to improve this section of the forum would be to start tracking incidence of diseases. We, as the grassroots of the larger trend of backyard poultry keeping, should start taking note of disease trends. It can only be, yet another, valuable tool in our arsenal.

    Thanks for bringing this subject up. I think it merits discussion. I hope others will chime in with their opinions on the matter.
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2012
  3. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    I started researching material about Marek's last June. Since then I've seen more posts about Marek's as well. Well, not really. Prior to "Help, my chicken may have Marek's", it was "help my chicken is sick and I don't know why".

    Centrarchid, the epidemic thing you mention, I think, is right in a way, for the past 20-30 years, large chicken production companies have gotten their Marek's problems under control by: vaccinating, practicing all-in-all-out, and disinfecting well, esp between hatches.

    Meanwhile, backyarders, and small chicken operations have not practiced these things. So I think what's happening is that it has become a major problem for small flockers. To complicate things, most laypeople have thought that Marek's is only when a chicken shows paralysis with one foot forward, one foot back. We know very well that there can be a number of symptoms, or none at all.

    Since a number of us have been posting more and more valid information about Marek's, I think more people are realizing that their chicken/s do have a reason for dying.

    Since there's no test, no cure, only speculation after a necropsy, about a virus that can be carried and spread by a bird that has no symptoms at all, I think it will only get worse. The only thing we can do is vaccinate new chicks.
  4. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida

    I remember that!
  5. Jadore Poules

    Jadore Poules Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 22, 2011
    Northern Virginia

    This seems to me very visionary thinking and worth trying it. Could you elaborate more on how it might be organized? For instance, I've seen taxonomies used for plant identification for those curious but unschooled in horticultural science ( Maybe that could be one way.

    Thanks for suggesting this idea. It's a good one.
  6. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    I do think we should have a data base , and sort of count (maybe by month) owners who have been struck by Marek's. Even if there are errors in diagnosis, it should at least give us an idea-rather than not knowing at all. We don't know how widespread this is. Or maybe do it: within the last 10 years, 5 years, 2 years. I don't know.

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