Chicken Help

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We found 42 results for category 'Chicken Health'

Q: Is Salmonella a concern with backyard chickens?
A: Not usually, but let us explain why. Humans do not catch salmonella from chicks or chickens the way you would catch a cold from your neighbor.... read more

Q: Should I get my birds vaccinated?
A: Marek's disease is a deadly, highly contagious "lymphoproliferative" disease affecting chickens. It is the #1 disease-related killer of chickens. It... read more

Q: There's a black spot or thin string attached to my brand new chick's rear. Is this a "pasty butt"?
A: No! It's your chick's umbilical cord, and if you notice, that black, scabby spot or string will be below your check's vent or "pooper." read more

Q: There is a black spot on my chicken's face! Should I be worried?
A: When a chicken gets a peck or a scrape on a comb or face, this will manifest as a black spot or scab, and isn't usually a cause for concern. If ALL... read more

Q: How do I care for a wounded chicken?
A: It is stressful to have a hurt chicken because an avian veterinarian can be hard to find, but don't panic. If you can't locate a vet, simple first... read more

Q: Do I need to give my shipped chicks vitamins and electrolytes when they arrive?
A:

We don't generally think it is a good idea to offer anything but plain, clean water unless your chicks are exceedingly stressed.

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Q: What is medicated feed all about--do I need it?
A: Medicated feed is formulated for chicks to help them combat coccidiosis, a disease that is found just about everywhere in the environment. Most... read more

Q: Why don't you offer vaccinations for bantams?
A: The reason we don't offer vaccinations for bantams is that the vaccine is often ineffective for them because the birds are so tiny that it is too... read more

Q: What are the signs of mites or lice and how do I treat my birds if they have an infestation?
A: Mites and lice are a common problem for chickens and can be carried in by wild birds, so if you have an infestation, it doesn't necessarily mean your... read more

Q: My hen's egg shells have rough patches, and sometimes little hard pimples on the shell. Should I be concerned?
A: This is usually an occasional thing, although younger or older hens are more prone to it. If your chicken is young, sometimes rough shells can occur... read more

Q: Why does my hen sometimes lay eggs with ridges halfway down the shell?
A: You may be describing what is called a "body checked egg." Body checks are ridges or grooves that occur around an egg, usually at the pointed end.... read more

Q: I just found a little dark spot in my hen's egg, but I don't even have a rooster! How can this happen?
A: These spots aren't related to having a rooster--or not!--in your flock. Presuming they are fertile, eggs with blood or meat spots are actually less... read more

Q: Why did my chicken lay a shell-less egg?
A: A shell-less egg is a strange sight! You might think a shell-less egg would look like a cracked egg: a mess of white and yolk soaking into nesting... read more

Q: My chicken has a lump or tumor on her chest--what should I do?
A: You are probably seeing your chicken's crop. A chicken's crop is a part of her digestive system, and is located on her breast. You see it in the... read more

Q: My flock is pecking one another! What should I do?
A: Pecking, also called picking, is almost always the result of high stress levels. When that happens, the birds will sometimes pluck each others'... read more

Q: Do my chickens need to be wormed, and if so, what schedule should I use?
A: If your chickens have worms, you will want to treat them. Some signs you can look for at home are pale combs, a drop in laying and watery poo.... read more

Q: Are you a member of the National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP)?
A: Yes! Our hatching facility and all other breeders with whom we contract are NPIP-certified. If you would like NPIP papers to be included with your... read more

Q: What is NPIP and why should I purchase only from NPIP breeders?
A: NPIP stands for National Poultry Improvement Plan, and it's a voluntary certification system that poultry breeders and hatcheries can participate in.... read more

Q: Avian Infectious Bronchitis Overview
A: Avian Infectious Bronchitis Also called
IB, IBV, Infectious Bronchitis, Cold

Prevalence-...
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Q: Domestic Newcastle Overview
A: Domestic Newcastle Also called
Newcastle Disease, Avian Distemper, Pseudofowl, ND, Parainfluenza, Fake Flu...
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Q: Exotic Newcastle Overview
A: Exotic Newcastle Also called
Pseudo-plague, Asiatic Newcastle, VVND, NVND, Velogenic Newcastle, VN,...
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Q: What is quarantine and when should I use quarantine in my flock?
A: In your backyard flock, quarantine is the act of isolating a chicken or chickens who has been potentially or actually exposed to contagious illness... read more

Q: My hen has sticky, tar-looking poop--is there anything wrong?
A: Probably not. Chickens actually produce two types of poo: fecal poo and cecal poo. Cecal poo is thicker, stinkier and stickier. It usually looks sort... read more

Q: Do I need to be worried about bird flu if I keep chickens?
A: Probably not worried--but it's a good idea to be informed about it.

Bird flu, or Avian Influenza (AI), is a viral disease that can infect...
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Q: Are there symptoms I should watch for that mean my birds are seriously ill? If they do get seriously ill, whom should I call?
A: Yes, as a pet owner, you are responsible for keeping your pet chickens safe and healthy, so it's important that you watch to make sure they don't get... read more

Q: What is the Biosecurity for Birds campaign and how can I find more information about it?
A: Biosecurity for Birds is a public awareness campaign started by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service in... read more

Q: How can I tell if my flock is infected with Salmonella? What are the symptoms?
A: While you won't be able to make a firm diagnosis of Salmonella on your own, it will be easy for you to see that your hens are sick. Chickens sick... read more

Q: How is Salmonella infection transmitted to chickens in the first place?
A: You probably don't have to worry about well cared for backyard hens catching salmonella if you provide a clean environment for them. Hens in factory... read more

Q: What can I do to reduce the risk of my birds getting sick with Salmonella or another illness?
A: The easiest thing to do is simply to provide your birds with safe, roomy, clean conditions. read more

Q: How do I know which chickens feeds have hormones and which are hormone-free?
A: There are no hormones in any brand of commercial chicken feed in the United States, according to the US Cooperative Extension Service. We think that... read more

Q: Should I be concerned that my hen laid an egg with blood on the shell?
A: When a hen has just begin laying, there can occasionally be a little blood on the egg shell, but it is usually no cause for concern. Eventually her... read more

Q: What can my chicken's comb tell me about his or her health?
A: A chicken's comb can be indicative of her circulation and condition. For instance pale pink, shrunken combs may indicate anemia, a mite infestation... read more

Q: Today I noticed that the tip of one hen's beak has broken off--how can this happen and what should I do?
A: This can occasionally happen, although it is rare. A chicken's beak will continue to grow throughout her lifetime, so as long as it is just the tip,... read more

Q: Will my lawn be safe for my pet chickens at the same time it's safe for dogs or cats, after the exterminator has sprayed it?
A: Well, having your lawn sprayed with pesticides while you are keeping chickens isn't a good idea---it isn't something most of us would ever want to... read more

Q: Why is my chick's beak getting crooked, and what should I do?
A: Usually, chickens with crossed beaks or scissor beaks lead long, normal lives.

In most cases, this defect is caused by the chick...
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Q: How do I dispose of a dead chick or chicken?
A: This is a difficult question to answer definitively, since what to do with a dead pet or animal can vary depending on your your state, city and even... read more

Q: I got Marek's vaccinations for my chicks from another hatchery, but they got sick and some died within two weeks. When I asked them if it was Marek's disease, they just denied it and asked about whether their brooder was set up right. Is this Marek's... am I right to be upset?
A: You're not wrong to be upset at the loss of your pets, of course, but if you're upset at your hatchery for suggesting that deaths weren't related to... read more

Q: Are oversized eggs that are difficult for my hens to pass caused by overfeeding?
A: It is not likely that the problem is overfeeding. We recommend feeding free choice and not limiting their feed: underfeeding usually causes more... read more

Q: I got the Marek's vaccination for my chickens, but one chicken seems sick! Is the vaccination not working?
A: If your chicken received the Marek's vaccination, she will most likely be protected from the symptoms of Marek's disease, but a small percentage of... read more

Q: Why does my chicken have a bare spot on her chest? She's not molting!
A: If she's not molting, isn't getting picked on and isn't suffering from external parasites like mites or lice, it's possible that the bare spot on her... read more

Q: Will ticks attack our chickens? We find ticks on our dogs.
A: Probably not. Chickens actually eat deer ticks, wood ticks, and dog ticks (as well as other types), and these are the most common ticks that bother... read more

Q: Is wry neck a genetic weakness that I should be worried about seeing in my chickens' offspring?
A: If you have a hen with wry neck, it is probably not a genetic problem... but read on, because the problem with answering that question definitively... read more