Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

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Sandrine
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

Post by Sandrine »

And he's back in the garage, in his cage... He just still isn't strong enough to go up the ladder as he has to jump up and he can't do that yet...
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rick
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

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We need a <3 button on this forum (don't you think!)
It seems a lot like the new hens brought an aggressive strain of mycoplasma in with them - unfortunately.
I might be wrong - usually am! How many of your birds have shown no symptoms and sailed trough the troubles? (they are likely to be resistant and if its most then that would be very good but I'd be careful with any new introductions as those that have developed an immunity will be carriers) (if most have not shown symptoms then it is a common strain and much more likely for there to be a fairly common resistance out there.)
... Chickens are a mystery most of the time. Makes me wonder though what you might do if you had a particular bout of bacterial infection like mycoplasma where the chickens had developed a resistance - or buying in birds that look fine but might be carriers. You wouldn't want to risk early small introductions to give their immune systems chance to ramp up in case the new birds have something really nasty that will show up in quarantine. So the only thing I can think of is normal quarantine period and then maybe swapping very small amounts of food and water between them over another week or two? I'm just wondering if that would lessen the incoming impact of new exposure to the snuffles.
This must happen all the time and pass unnoticed (minor adjustment to new bacteria). I think you were probably just particularly unlucky with this one.
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Marigold
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

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I'm afraid that the only answer if mycoplasma is inherent in the flock is an all-out policy, followed by very thorough disinfectation of the whole premises and equipment, and then re-stocking with vaccinated birds from a trusted source. Difficult if the flock are pets, as yours are, Sandrine, - which is why mycoplasma is so common in small domestic groups of chickens.
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rick
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

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Are chickens from small breeders vaccinated for mycoplasma Marigold? Mareks yes, but I don't see any mention of Mg vaccination out there other than in big industry. I think just a few birds have a weak resistance to the not usually pathogenic strains (for some reason) - like Betty who had it when I got her (that's why she was in the bantam run at the breeders and a bit small for the breed - Doh!) but none of my others showed symptoms, they had never been vaccinated for anything (being hatched at school) and they had time for it to develop. The vet said at the time that vaccination (for Mareks presumably) wasn't possible as they would have to buy industrial scale quantities of the stuff and use it all quickly.
An all out policy may be something that we go in for with a small flock. There are lots of good reasons for adopting it but its not quite the same as the veterinary guidance to to industry where any signifiant drop in egg production would financially force an early termination to that years flock (insufficient return on food and maintenance costs.) They are all out by the end of the season anyway, and it will all be disinfected for the next cycle of egg production with new pullets. If my hens had to pay their way then some solid gold ones are will overdue!
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Marigold
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

Post by Marigold »

Home-grown chicks are not usually vaccinated against anything, as you say, Rick, because the vaccine come in large batches to treat hundreds of chicks so less economic for just a few. However, the vaccine are not horrendously priced if you're a non-commercial 'pet' keeper who is willing to invest against the possibility of vets bill in the future. As I understand it, like with kids, various doses have to be given at different times in the chicks' growth, so its not easy. It also means that, to keep a small flock fully vaccinated and free of myco, you really need to buy POLs who have had their full programme of doses at appropriate ages, which means not buying chicks or young growers that might only be partially protected. It might well be OK token a closed flock and breed from these if they showed no signs of illness by their second year, but once any of your birds showed any signs of mycoplasma in future generations, you would be unable to breed from them, would be unwise to add any others from outside, and would basically be back to the original problem of what to do about it.
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rick
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

Post by rick »

But I don't think anyone other than industry use an Mg vaccine (under licence.)(and I can only see reference to use in the USA)
https://www.msdvetmanual.com/poultry/my ... in-poultry
The vaccinated birds become carriers but that's OK because they will never leave the flock, or be bred from and will be dispatched at the end of the laying season. (sounds like you've got to keep them well clear of any turkeys though.)
So it just comes down to a trustworthy breeder who is very confident that they don't have any carriers in their stock. (and have vaccinated for other things that are not Mg). A good breeder who would never knowingly pass on any poorly chickens.
And some experience viewing chickens to buy - gained through mistakes in my case!

Anyway, all I'm saying is that, yes, it would be irresponsible to knowingly move it on outside the flock but it will only develop into infectious bronchitis when immune systems are depressed (i.e. through stress) A carrier isn't infectious unless they are currently suffering from infectious bronchitis and even then it will be high concentrations of exposure that cause an explosion of infections (like in a commercial barn.) We would isolate the poorly bird. It would seem a shame to cull the ones in a domestic flock whose immune systems have a handle on it as its probably as common as the common cold out there!

Sorry to go on but I feel strongly about this - about the only place it wont be is in a commercial barn because they cant use antibiotics any more so the whole supply chain has to be squeaky clean.
Sandrine
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

Post by Sandrine »

Oh wow... So much catching up to do on this thread!!
Only two of them show the same symptoms (snuffly and on the weak ish side when it comes to jumping up... ). Peckford and Dodo (one of the new girls). Doris and Booboo didn't show any of the symptoms before they died, and only Booboo was on the sleepy side, especially on hot days. But to be honest both of them had bot been laying for a while and Peckford had been very demanding of them, eventhough they were the smallest birds. So to be fair I am quite "satisfied" that their passing would be if natural cause, though granted at a strange time. Plus they had been vaccinated before we bought them.
Peckford was bought as an egg, and didn't get vaccinated.
Dodo was bought from a smaller breeder. Doubtful that she was vaccinated. She seemed ok when she first came, started laying quickly, but isn't anymore at the moment. Her symptoms are no where near as bad as Peckford's have been.
Coco came from the same place, both are crossbreeds. She doesn't show signs of anything wrong with her. She's not laying but she is still a little young for that anyway.
Tilly we bought as an egg, same time as Peckford. Not vaccinated, no symptoms of anything, still laying currently.
Peep is one of the originals, so was vaccinated by the breeder. She was also in high demand as far as Peckford's concerned. She's not laying currently but she only lays in late winter and spring and then becomes broody and that's it... , Lol she's the mother hen of the flock...
Punky and Rosie are the youngest, Peckford's kids and Peep's. (First thought they were Booboo's, but actually I think i was mistaken) . They're almost 12 weeks old, and are very healthy. They are in a separate coop. They roam with the others in the garden, though Punky tends to fight with Tilly and Coco so they don't really mix much... Punky and Rosie are almost joined at the hip most if the time and steer clear of the others.
I have just realised that the eglu "caravan" was infested with red mites... This must have been only in the last week or so because the girls have decided to sleep outside for about as long... first time I got mites in the eglu! Didn't think it was even possible... Very difficult to spot in there... But all sorted and everyone treated too.

Peckford is perky again, put on a bit of weight, eats, drinks, dust bathes every opportunity he gets, looks happy generally. We'll be letting him back in the "caravan" tonight.
Shadrach
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

Post by Shadrach »

Good to read Mr Peckford seems to be on the mend.
I've been learning a bit about Oxine. It may be of interest to you.
https://www.shagbarkbantams.com/the-man ... al-health/
Sandrine
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

Post by Sandrine »

Thank you Shadrach.
This looks interesting but you can't get it from any UK suppliers... Which raises a whole of questions...
However that's a vood point worthy of more research.
Sandrine
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Re: Poorly Peckford - Any ideas please?

Post by Sandrine »

It would seem the heat was a factor in Peckford long winded recovery... Up to last Saturday / Sunday he couldn't jump still and so he was stopping outside of the coop unless we'd give him a lift in... Which he seemed quite happy to get so that he was with the girls. Since Monday he's joined them on his own as he is able to jump, and his stance is much better too! I believe we've got our Peckford back!! Thank goodness for that! Although Punkie (Peckford's 12 week old son) may not be that impressed, whilst his raging hormones make him believe he's the boss! And the fact that he's almost half the size of Peckford doesn't seem to deter him!!
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