Watching return to weight following treatment for cecal worms

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by centrarchid, Jul 30, 2014.

  1. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    20,537
    6,098
    586
    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Over last couple weeks a 3 year old gamehen had suffered from a worm load that was not roundworms. Based on appearance of worms in feces and failure respond to treatment for roundworms, the assumption was cecal worms. A more aggressive de-worming agent considered effective against all intestinal parasites was employed causing major passing of smaller worms about 18 hours post-treatment.

    Interesting observations are that prior to and for a couple days post-treatment the crop emptying rate was greatly slowed relative to rate of birds not showing worrisome signs of worm burden. This was even when amount consumed prior to roosting was the same. Now four days post-treatment appetite and consumption greatly increasing and weight is starting to come back up. The lag time was interesting. Also bird may have lost additional weight during treatment. Sick bird is also lagging with respect to molt and egg production stopped but will likely resume for a late season clutch.
     
  2. welasharon

    welasharon Songster

    3,946
    92
    236
    Jun 28, 2010
    North Florida
    The crop held food for longer when the worm load was heavy?
     
  3. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    20,537
    6,098
    586
    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Yes. Big time longer. It means the rate of food processing by the digestive tract is greatly slowed. I have seen similar with fishes (largemouth bass) following starvation but did not expect to see such in a homeothermic animal. Would explain the the need for elevated temperatures when heavily infected.
     
  4. welasharon

    welasharon Songster

    3,946
    92
    236
    Jun 28, 2010
    North Florida
    That is interesting. I would have thought the opposite...trying to process more to overcome effects of worm population. Elevated temps produced by the bird to keep warm due to lack of temp producing food processing?
     
  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    20,537
    6,098
    586
    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri

    When infected I think the ability to generate heat without tapping into fat / glycogen / protein is greatly reduced.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: