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What to do for a completely healthy flock??

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Pharm Girl, Jan 11, 2011.

  1. Pharm Girl

    Pharm Girl Songster

    Jan 6, 2011
    This may be a dumb question, but I have four 11 month old chickens of various breeds. I've raised them from day-old last february and so far they are as healthy as can be. They do free range around my yard and are kept impeccably clean. I clean all their droppings every morning and change out the run every other week. I change their water every other day and clean out their feeders between feedings (Once every two weeks).

    They also get a sprinkling of DE in the nesting boxes, in the sand in the run, and over their food when I clean the coop. That would be every other week or so.

    I believe they had their initial vaccinations as hatchlings, they had some medicated and some non-medicated chick feed back in the day. Now they just eat layer pellets and kitchen veggie scraps and drink plain clean water. They also forage around our property which is a large normal urban landscaped backyard.

    My question is, how do I keep them this healthy? Should I worm them this spring as a preventative? Should I be doing anything else to maintain the level of healthiness they already have?
    Sunnier times! *note the chicken wire has since been replaced with hardware cloth thanks to reading BYC posts!
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2011

  2. kla37

    kla37 Songster

    Apr 18, 2010
    Hillsborough, NC USA
    I kind of have the same questions! All our hens are doing just great, and I want to keep it that way!
  3. Pharm Girl

    Pharm Girl Songster

    Jan 6, 2011
    Whoops, sorry. I guess this should have been under "Managing your Flock." Oh well, I still would like any advice! Thanks.
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Loving this country life Premium Member

    Well sounds like your both doing a great job, Congratulations, just keep up the good work. What ever your doing is working so why change anything. I like to give mine which are also healthy, for a snack mealworms. They absolutely love them.. By the way they are very pretty.
  5. NixNoodleNumbat

    NixNoodleNumbat Songster

    Jan 1, 2011
    Make sure the water is clean. Don't give them too much scratch. Dont give them avacados, green potato, lollies, chocolate, anything with caffine, cat food or mouldy stuff. Check on your flock daily. Keep the coop clean. Don't let them eat snails(they can carry deseises)

    If your flock is healthy after eleven months you are doing a good job. Some diseises cant be prevented, though.
  6. Zoey

    Zoey In the Brooder

    Jun 5, 2009
    Big Island, Hawaii
    Pick them up once a week, feel them down the breast bone , keep an eye on their weight ... what you are feeling for is whether there is a good amount of meat on each side of the bone , if the bone starts protruding more and more, then you know they are losing their condition, or losing weight ...
    Once you get familiar with each one, it's easy to gauge changes, and while you're at it check them all over , under the wings, back by the vent fluff, just forward of the tail, for lice and mites...( lift the feathers, pushing gently against feather growth, so you can see the skin, and bases of the feathers for egg clumps) catching things early is much easier to get things fixed. Also feel their crop, and abdomens , feel very lightly, for squishy , firmness, heat, swellings , just get to know them this way ... (and watch the droppings daily, this is the first sign of anyone being 'Off" !!)

    If something 'happens' you will know about it much faster this way...

    chicken keeping is a hands on deal...[​IMG]

    I have 70 chickens, and i pick up a random 4 to 5 chickens ,and do this daily...

    (If i have to inspect them all, i do it at night with my headlamp, just go 1 by 1 lift them off the roost , check, put them back and on to the next one ...)
  7. chickerdoodle

    chickerdoodle Songster

    Aug 21, 2009
    In addition to what advice you have already been given, I'd also have a fresh "flock" fecal tested spring and fall for worms, cocci or any other parasites. We are lucky to have an avian specialist who treats chickens and does the test. It costs about $30 but I feel its worth it. So far--all our tests have been negative [​IMG]

  8. gallusdomesticus

    gallusdomesticus Songster

    Nov 14, 2008
    Lynn Haven, FL
    It's a great picture of your girls. It sounds like you're doing all the right things. Some people worm when they see worms or as a preventative, worm on a schedule. I give my flock Verm-X, a natural worm preventative one a month which is organic and does not have an egg withdrawal period associated with it.
    Even if you keep your birds in perfect health, you need to be aware of predators and keep them away from your flock. Racoons, possums, and hawks, and dogs are the main threats down here in Florida. Your fence can't be too strong or your hen house too secure.
    Good luck with your flock.

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