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#103366 - 04/13/12 11:09 PM medicated starter
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada
How big a threat is coccidiosis, really?

I have given up medicated starter completely for several years now and I do not lose chicks. Despite being told they are going to drop dead from coccidiosis if I don't use medicated starter, the truth is that this has turned out to not be the case. On regular chick crumbles, they live. Meat birds and layer chicks, they all live.

I am wondering if coccidiosis is an environmental problem present in some areas more than others? Perhaps hot States are more prone to it than cooler Canadian provinces?

I do know that HOW you keep your chicks has a HUGE impact on their survival rate. Crowd and stress them, leave them on wet, soggy ground and they are likely to keel over. But warm and dry with clean water and food and enough room to move freely...there should be no need for medicated starter.

I know many people who use it as insurance, just incase. But if the actual, honest death rate due to coccidiosis is not that high, why do we believe it is? I do not believe coccidiosis is a big enough threat to my birds in my environment to medicate them 'just cause'. But I have no been able to get clear answers on the true deaht rate from cocci, what causes it, bad keeping practices or different climates?

I just think we overuse antibiotics and its time we quit believing everything some food or drug company tells us.

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#103377 - 04/15/12 12:38 AM Re: medicated starter [Re: Uno]
Maria Ricardo Offline
Past Moderator
Coop Keeper

Registered: 03/26/05
Posts: 434
Loc: Hawaii
Here at 20 degrees latitude I haven't yet had a problem with coccidiosis. Up the road my neighbor's sheep got it during a long bout of rainy weather. Their corral was flooded, so I believe wetness in bedding is a big factor.

I stopped getting the medicated feed too. Sometimes the hens would eat the medicated feed and I wondered if it would effect the eggs.

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