Health precautions

The place to discuss the health of your chickens.
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daniel1005
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Health precautions

Post by daniel1005 »

Hi I've got 4 new hens last week and I'm new to chicken keeping. I've brought some worming Verm-X and I am starting that this week. I have brought some poultry disinfectant and cleaner for the coop etc. Is there any other health precautions I should take? Is it worth vaccinating? How do you stop things like salmonella etc.?
Philcott
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Re: Health precautions

Post by Philcott »

Congrats on your new hens! It's going to be fun for you as well as a sharp learning curve! :)

While Verm-x is a good tonic/preventative for birds, sadly it does not kill worms, so you will somewhere along the line need to get hold of either Flubenvet and mix it with your feed, or get the pellets that already have it mixed in.

Vaccinating - the vaccine only comes in huge quantities and is done at day old or so, so I wouldn't suggest going down that route.

Get yourself some Stalosan F is you can, and put this under your bedding in the coop, will keep it cleaner, drier and sweeter smelling. Don't use straw or hay in the coop, stick to either shavings or (which I prefer) equine bedding like Rapport, Hemcore or something similar. Try and poo pick on a daily basis (shouldn't be difficult with just four hens) and you won't have to clean out your coop so often.
Breed Registrar for Autosexing Poultry on behalf of the Rare Poultry Society.
www.autosexing-poultry.co.uk
daniel1005
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Re: Health precautions

Post by daniel1005 »

Thanks for the advice. It's a bit annoying that I asked for chicken wormer at the shop and he gave me Vermex. The bedding I use is this: http://www.blissbedding.com/products/bedding-type-2. I am thinking of getting some ground sanitizer for their enclosure aswell because I don't want them to smell (too much).
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chrismahon
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Re: Health precautions

Post by chrismahon »

Good advice from Philcott Daniel. Salmonella is an industrial problem when birds are kept in packed conditions with poor feed -our vet visited a broiler producer last week with 280,000 birds on site! The gut flora largely control Salmonella so keep them healthy and feed them well. You may find that your hens have already been vaccinated Daniel. Where did they come from and what breed(s) are they?

You will find that Vermex has only recently been downgraded so perhaps the retailer didn't realise. Can you take it back and change it? The run won't doesn't smell if you poo-pick daily. We use a dustpan and brush into a bucket and then onto the compost. Store the dustpan and brush in the bucket filled with water.
daniel1005
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Re: Health precautions

Post by daniel1005 »

They are hybrids gingernut ranger, daisy belle, Sussex star, black star. From a local poultry stockists I could probably phone them and ask.
Philcott
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Re: Health precautions

Post by Philcott »

I would suspect that they have been vaccinated already in that case. I would advise against mixing any unvaccinated stock should you decide to get any more chickens. Your birds will excrete various viruses for most of their lives, consequently infecting any new stock. It's nothing to worry about and will not affect you, their eggs or their health. :)
Breed Registrar for Autosexing Poultry on behalf of the Rare Poultry Society.
www.autosexing-poultry.co.uk
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chrismahon
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Re: Health precautions

Post by chrismahon »

I would advise getting the innoculation details Daniel for your records. As Philcott says your hens may shed their innoculation viruses to any new birds not treated. During innoculation chicks are given the viruses one at a time, with time to recover between. If they are transmitted to new adult birds they can get them all at the same time and can't cope. The simple answer is to run separate flocks kept well apart if you do decide to get Pedigree birds in the future (as Pedigrees are normally not vaccinated). We operate a two flock system for that reason.
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