weirdest behavior


In the Brooder
8 Years
May 14, 2011
Alexandria, LA
I've recently noticed the strangest behavior from several of my 5 week old silkie chicks. It almost looks like they're having a seizure. They hunker down, shake their head back-n-forth and it looks like their eyes glaze over. After a few seconds of doing that, they snap out of it and run around like all is well. I recently raised several bantie chicks in the same environment and they nver displayed this type of behavior. The only thing that I can think of is I recently used some cut-n-heal on my bantie hen where she was picking her wing. I noticed that tea tree oil is one of the ingredients and I read somewhere that some animals have a seizure like reactions to tea tree oil. I wash my hands but I can still smell a faint odor of it on my hands. What are ya'lls thoughts on this?
Tea tree oil is highly toxic if ingested even in the most minute quantities. I think it could very well be to blame if that is the only new thing the birds have been exposed to.

I hope you figure out the mystery. Good luck.
Hi...I bought some white silkie banties this year at TSC. I have one who displays the same behavior as you describe.Is it almost a slow motion type head twisting back and forth? I thought there was something neurologically wrong.It tends to do this more often if stressed but then it acts fine like nothing happened.Growth rate is good...eats well...drinks well..As soon as I noticed it,I added vitamins/electrolytes to the water and had them on that for like 2 weeks.It still did it after that but I haven't seen the behavior for a week or so...they are roughly 6 weeks old now.I was hoping he/she outgrew it.Sorry I have no curious myself if this is something they are prone to. We need a silkie expert!
BTW, I have used nothing with tea tree oil at all....for myself or the birds...

When I stepped back into the room where I keep them, there were three chicks having this 'seizure' like action, it was more extreme w/ wings out spread and curled up toes. I immediantly (after scrubbing my hands and doning some socks, no rubber gloves) I put them into a brand new container w/ a new water and food dish on some paper towels. Now I have them outside to get some fresh air. They seem to be 'tired' but other wise they went right back to pecking. It's got to be something that I hand on my hands.......
Wow...mine never did that
Hope you figure it out!

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