Ugh. My rooster's rear is infected- there are maggots! What do I do?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by artist chick, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. artist chick

    artist chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 26, 2008
    Auburn, Alabama
    Okay, this is totally gross. We've noticed for a few weeks that he didn't smell good, but we couldn't find anything wrong and he acts perfectly normally. Well, today my son caught him and we moved his rear end feathers back, and discovered that he has a violently red area around his vent as well as maggots crawling all around and in it. nasty nasty nasty!! Anyway, we were on our way out the door to run errands, so I quickly grabbed the betadine and thoroughly doused the area, and then we left him out while we locked up the rest of the chickens. Then I looked up "worms" on this forum and realized they were maggots. The first thing I saw without taking time to go farther was to use pine shavings instead of straw (which we've been using lately!) because shavings dry out quicker and maggots thrive in moisture.

    So the last errand we did was buy some shavings and my son is out there now spreading them in the pen.

    Questions: Can we eat the eggs my hens have been laying? could they be infected? I'm positive my rooster has been mating with just about all of them. I sold some eggs just a few days ago and have another customer coming in 2 days. Should I tell her not to come?

    What do I do about the rooster's maggots? Should I separate him from the hens until I figure something out? I assume he's had this problem for weeks since he's been smelling bad for a while. All the hens are probably affected, but I haven't started examining them yet.

    What do I do? Help, someone, please!
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    South Georgia
    I don't see why it would affect eggs or your hens, myself. Most likely he got a wound somehow, and flies laid eggs in it. You need to get the maggots out (if you haven't already) and protect the wound from flies. If you can figure out a way to do this without keeping him in your house, more power to you -- but that's what I would have to do, with a cow pasture nearby.

    If it makes you feel any better, they used to use maggots on people to clean certain wounds. Not suggesting they are a good thing, now. After they get through eating what is rotten, they start on the animal, and they would literally eat him alive if you left them long enough. But at least it should have kept the wound clean to some extent.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 27, 2011
  3. bitbythechick

    bitbythechick Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2010
    Corvallis
    There is an oniment they sell for horses called swat, comes in clear or bright pink, but it's to protect from flies and dirt. You can buy it at any feed store for round ten bucks. You put it on after you have cleaned the area out and medicated it.

    Hope that this helps!
     
  4. artist chick

    artist chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 26, 2008
    Auburn, Alabama
    Thanks so much, both of you. Okay. How do I clean the area out?! Rinse his rear with the hose while my son holds him?
     
  5. bitbythechick

    bitbythechick Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2010
    Corvallis
    I would try that and you may need to use tweezers to get all the maggots out and then flush it out with the betadine again.
     
  6. artist chick

    artist chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 26, 2008
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    okay, thanks! Boy, this is not a task I ever envisioned myself doing! [​IMG]
     
  7. OrpingtonManor

    OrpingtonManor Building the Castle

    Nov 15, 2008
    Martinez, CA
    You can use saline, which is soothing to the bird's wounds, while being deadly to the maggots. I mixed up a big tub of saline (1/4 tsp natural salt to 1/2 gallon water. mix as much as you need!) to soak my bird's butt. The maggots die instantly. However, you still need to pick off any that have burrowed into the wound. You could also use the saline wound spray (you can buy it at the pharmacy) to get those gross little buggers out of the skin.

    Soak in saline, tweezer the remaining buggers, spray with saline wound spray, tweeze. Repeat until you don't see anymore. Only when you are sure you have all the maggots should you add ointment, although fly ointment would be great once you've cleaned him up to keep the flies from reinfesting him.

    I've been reading on this subject all morning because I just had a hen die, with a large wound covered with maggots just under her vent. (My bird was too far gone to help, although I certainly tried. Plus, there were other issues, ie internal laying). These little critters depend on us to do all we can until there is no more to do, either because they heal or they die, or we choose to cull them.

    Good luck!
     
  8. M@M@2four

    [email protected]@2four Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2008
    USA
    Yep! Mix up a saline solution(water and salt and pour on the area). I also use peroxide(have had this happen before). Then I generously apply neosporin to the area. Good luck!
     
  9. artist chick

    artist chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 26, 2008
    Auburn, Alabama
    Saline solution idea- thank you for this suggestion. AFter my last post I went back out there and rinsed him carefully with cool water from the hose. I was prepared to physically remove the maggots, but the betadine I squirted all over earlier must have done it, because I didn't see any this time. I do believe his injury must be internal, because earlier the maggots were actually in his vent.

    I didn't see any at all this time, but the tissue around his vent is flaming red- I know he is infected inside. I don't see anything to put neosporin on- no lesions or cuts, etc. Just very, very red skin. So after rinsing him well, I doused the area with betadine again.

    Tomorrow morning we will do this again -I need my son's help and he'll be gone all day. My husband is out of town. After we do it again in the morning I will go to my feed and seed store and get the fly ointment mentioned earlier to try to keep him from getting any more maggots. We will do the treatment again and then add the ointment after my son gets back home in the afternoon.

    I had a hen die on Friday after having found a really odd, deformed, empty egg shell on Thursday. Friday morning we realized she was acting sick, and when we picked her up we discovered her rear end was concave and covered with flies and maggots. I came inside to look here and find out what to do, but before I could find anything she died. (not 10 minutes after we first discovered the problem!)

    It sounds as if we don't keep an eye on our chickens, but we do. We think of them as pets more than anything, and we usually spend quite a bit of time with them outside each day. Last week we were away from home most of each day, which is unusual, so we missed the signs. I feel terrible!
     
  10. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    South Georgia
    I'd recommend going easy on the Betadine. It is a good disinfectant for initial cleaning (and evidently good to use on maggots, too) but it is destructive to new skin cells. If you use it again I would also rinse it off after a minute. Neosporin or the Swat ointment would both be good to apply then. Red skin like that actually is broken, very superficially, so an ointment is a good idea, besides the Swat hopefully being good to prevent more maggots. I hope he heals up for you.

    And [lease don't beat yourself up over this. Chickens are very good at hiding that they are sick. You are far from the first to watch over them pretty closely and still have something like this sneak up on you. I promise you, plenty of us have felt shamefaced when we discovered something.
     

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