To Vaccinate or Not, that is the question

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by sassybirds, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. sassybirds

    sassybirds Out Of The Brooder

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    Hello All!

    I have a small flock of blue wheaten ameraucanas, black and blue copper marans, speckled sussex, and cream legbar that I am planning on selling chicks and hatching eggs from. I plan on getting NPIP cert., because I really want to do things right. Question is, I was wondering if I should vaccinate/offer to vaccinate the chicks. Vaccinating for Mareks seems like pretty normal protocol, but should I offer other vaccines as well? Jeffers offers a vac. for MG...just don't know how many would want their chicks vaccinated as I don't know demand and the MG vaccine is ~$100 per bottle. Thanks!!! :)
     
  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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    I'd personally only vaccinate for Marek's. I know that some people that sell/show chickens vaccinate for respiratory diseases like Larayngotracheitis, but not everybody does. Marek's is prevalent nearly everywhere, so you should certainly vaccinate for it.
     
  3. Pathfinders

    Pathfinders Overrun With Chickens

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    The thing about Marek's Disease is, it's everywhere. Literally everywhere. People go to the feed store with their poopy boots, and they track it into the feed store. Or Wal-Mart, or the hardware store. So you're going to run into it sooner or later if you breed poultry. And you have to decide which way you want to go: vaccinate, or breed for resistance. Making that decision is sometimes going to depend on what breed you're working with, as some are more resistant than others.

    When I bred Dutch Bantams, I always vaccinated, as for whatever reason, Dutch just do not develop a good resistance to Marek's, and the losses I had when I didn't vaccinate were not acceptable. Now that I am focusing solely on Buckeye large fowl, I am breeding for resistance, and am having very good success.

    So it's not a cut and dried situation, and each breeder must make their own decision on whether or not to vaccinate based on their level of tolerance for loss, taking into consideration the breed they are working with and the resistance of that breed.

    I was considering starting to vaccinate for LT this fall, but after speaking to some longtime breeders and judges, decided not to. They're very hard nosed about it, and they feel that breeding for resistance is crucial.

    I think if I showed a lot, I still might consider it. But I typically only go to between three to five shows a year.
     
  4. sassybirds

    sassybirds Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you! That helps a lot. I have some grown birds that are not vaccinated, but will vaccinate all chicks that I hatch and receive.
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    I’d do some more research before I vaccinated for MG. I’m going from memory and that’s dangerous. Definitely confirm what I’m about to say before you blindly believe it, but best I can remember they use a live virus to vaccinate for MG. Once they are vaccinated I’m pretty sure they are carriers for life. And I think MG is one that can be transmitted through hatching eggs.

    If you are planning on selling hatching eggs or chicks, I’d do some serious research before I vaccinated the breeders for MG.
     
  6. Pathfinders

    Pathfinders Overrun With Chickens

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    I agree. The only think I would consider vaccinating for if I were shipping chicks would be Marek's Disease.

    I do offer to do it for my customers (I do ship chicks) but expect them to pay for the cost of the vaccine, as I don't normally keep it on hand any more.
     
  7. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Consider only vaccinating against what diseases are prevelent in your area. You can contact your local extension office or state agriculture department for that info. It's possible vaccinations may not even be needed.
     
  8. sassybirds

    sassybirds Out Of The Brooder

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    Tha

    That's a really good idea. I'll definitely be giving them a call....and how 'bout them Dawgs? It was a heck of a game down there in Jacksonville!

    Thanks everyone! Your input has been very valuable and informative :)
     

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