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#15437 - 07/14/03 08:50 AM crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


A week ago a 3 week old chick died suddenly- no symptoms, a Plymouth Rock Bantam. I had a bird die yesterday, no symptoms. A male Araucana about 6 months old.

2 weeks ago I had one chicken sneezing. No crusting, no fever, she did have loose stools. She is about 7 months old, a standard cochin.

Now all the birds are snorting/blowing their noses, and most have crusting. They are not lethargic(beyond what would be normal on an 80* day). There is NO smell to the discharge. They do not have swollen eyes or any eye discharge. Combs and whattles are normal. Egg production is down.
Any one have any idea what it could be and how to treat? I began with Araumicin(sp) yesterday.
Thanks!

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#15438 - 07/14/03 07:23 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Bummer man,sounds exactly like mycoplasma. Had it and have no birds now as a result. Waiting till next year to get birds to get rid of it.It can stay alive in organic/fecal matter for 4 mos or more. No cure. Meds will make them look/act better but as soon as you stop all symptoms come back. While it won't outright kill them itself it causes the sneezing and snotty noses and it makes them susceptible to attack from other diseases as well as making them unthrifty and poor layers.The eggs will show more wrinkles and rough spots too.The birds will also lose weight and be thin. Wait'll winter if you think it's bad now.It's very contagious and spreads through wild birds and vermin and off your feet when you go places after through stepping on fecal matter, bodily discharges,sheddings.You can be certain but it's gonna cost ya a visit to the vet.A blood sample can be sent by the vet to the state lab in Reynoldsburg here in Ohio.It's $10/bird for blood test + whatever your vet charges for a visit. Takes 7-10 days or so to get results.
It's a very common disease, 90% of small flocks have it . I wish more flock owners would take responsibility for not spreading diseases and get their birds tested and not spread these diseases around. We got rid of pullorum for the most part,why not some of these other diseases that still plague bird owners ,whether commercial or private flocks? frown mad confused )

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#15439 - 07/15/03 02:53 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


o man they are'nt even my birds and i don't want to hear that. could you please give more details about the mycoplasma i've never heard of it.is there another name? frown confused

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#15440 - 07/15/03 05:41 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Mycoplasma is, as I said,very common. Most chicken people refer to it as a cold but chickens can't get colds and anytime a birds is sneezing w/ any regularity it's not good. What's regularly? If you can hear the bird/s are sneezing just standing or foraging around or while roosting at night you got issues. Type Mycoplasma gallisepticum or M. synovia into your search engine. It's very depresssing reading but all chicken owners should be aware of this.
It broke my heart frown to kill the birds I raised from wee bitty things,they were very tame and well trained but I'm not going to be someone who is perpetuating a disease. It can potentially spread into and through wild birds which makes it even more an imperative we don't let the disease get a hold, )

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#15441 - 07/15/03 11:23 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


What differentiates it from a respiratory infection? Mine arent sneezing, they seem to be blowing through their noses in an effort to clear them. There is also no mucus to see, its just a bit of crusting on some of their noses. I'd sure hate to destroy them all. And I havent had any deformed eggs either.

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#15442 - 07/15/03 05:10 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Bill Ludwig Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 2582
Loc: Ohio
Mycoplasmosis is a group of diseases. Look here for details- http://www.merckvetmanual.com/mvm/index.jsp?cfile=htm/bc/toc_203500.htm Good luck.

Bill

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#15443 - 07/15/03 06:12 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Update:
Chickens have been on antibiotics for one day now. Crustiness is gone, snorting is down. I had no eggs yesterday, and today I am back to normal production. No differences in egg texture, look or size/shape. Does this eliminate any suspected illness'?
Thanks!

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#15444 - 07/16/03 05:18 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Respiratory infections tend to be chronic and meds will keep symptoms covered.They won't go away,sorry to say. Any bird that does"recover" is a carrier and can pass it to others.If your birds have'nt had it for long then no egg affected yet but if they do you'll see it eventually.Some birds don't suffer as badly but none are immune. Summer is easier on them than winter.
The blowing to clear the mucus is a clear indicator of respiratory infection.Sounds like they are just coming down w/ it.
Have you gotten any new birds recently that might have introduced this? If not,then sparrows or starlings may have brought it from a sick flock they were scamming waste feed from. You may have also brought it in on your feet if you've been to a show/swap/auction. )

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#15445 - 07/17/03 10:43 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
KazJaps Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 08/30/02
Posts: 2792
Loc: Australia
Spur, I'm starting to wonder if your birds had both CRD & Infectious Bronchitis (IB)? Usually CRD is rather mild, but it is a different story if in combination with other respiratory diseases. I haven't heard of egg deformity with CRD or Coryza, but it is a symptom of IB.

* Mycoplasma may also be transmitted by eggs, so day-old chicks may already be infected (depending on management practises, eg egg treatments/antibiotics, vaccinations, clean breeding stock). The infected chicks may not show symptoms for weeks, months, or not at all.

Some other links on Mycoplasmosis (CRD - Chronic Respiratory Disease):
http://groups.msn.com/PolishChickens/mycoplasmosis.msnw

-an Australian article:
http://www.dpi.qld.gov.au/poultry/5111.html

If you started killing off Mycoplasma carrier birds in Australia, I doubt there would be many birds left! But I'm starting to wonder if Mycoplasma gallisepticum is in a more virulent form in the US.

Quote:
Some birds don't suffer as badly but none are immune
I'm not sure about this statement, unless you are just saying that none are immune to becoming carriers of Mycoplasma. The majority of chickens are carriers of the Marek's herpes virus, but they don't have Marek's disease. There is quite a distinction. My understanding is that there is usually a trigger (stressor) for Mycoplasma carrier birds to develop respiratory disease. You will find reference in "Poultry Breeding & Genetics" of breeding Mycoplasmoses genetically resistant birds.

I also disagree if you are suggesting that "all" birds that have experienced Mycoplasma become chronic (ie repeated disease episodes). That hasn't been my experience with the majority of my flock & I don't use antibiotics for CRD. It's usually so mild, I let them be (& why I'm thinking the US has a more virulent strain?). I've found that certain lines were more susceptible to CRD, or any bug for that matter. I cull them from breeding programs (ie, chronic birds). The emphasis for me is on breeding tough resistant birds, vaccinating for the nasty diseases (that can wipe out your flock) & good poultry management practises to keep general health & fitness within my flock. So when they are disease challenged, they have the stamina to overcome it. And I mean “WHEN” they are diseased challenged, not IF! Because of this, my methods of disease management need to differ from total bio-secure & commercial operations. With my situation, I wouldn't want to sell birds to someone else, knowing that they couldn't even handle Mycoplasma.

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#15446 - 07/18/03 06:53 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


KJ, my diagnosis was not speculation but was done through blood analysis by the state agricultural lab and they tested for a dozen of the major poultry diseases so I can be certain of what my birds had,both M.synoviae and gallisepticum and no other diseaes were present.
While egg deformities were not present in all birds there was a definite granulation of some of the shells and wrinkles on the pointed end of others.
M. synoviae is not as pathogenic as gallisepticum and signs are more apt to remain latent till the bird is stressed.Maybe you have a less pathogenic strain.There are a # of named strains of the spp of mycoplasmas so it goes further than just three spp that affect birds.Three spp w/ a number of adaptable strains of varying virulaence.
I will respectfully disagree w/ you on the mareks assessment. Or maybe it's just the birds I had. I have taken several groups of birds for testing and Mareks is about #1 on the list for diseases to be indentified and none of my birds had it.
You mention that most birds down there have Mycoplasma. Well,according to a study done by the U. of Arkansas, here in the US 90% of small flocks have it and 70% or more of commercial flocks have it. Very pernicious disease. Pullorum used to be this way too but we're almost rid of it through diligence and testing.
Yes,I meant all will be carriers. And while they may not exhibit symptoms they wiil get other birds sick. This does not mean they are not themselves sick w/ it,just not showing symptoms as their bodily defenses have adapted to it.
In trying to research this disease I came across many resources/references that were of the opinion that Mycoplasmas were a manageable disease and the general feeling was it is something that most will have to deal w/.I just think that's the drug industry talking as there were always recommendations of medications. I met two PhD's in poultry,Dr.Yan Zhang of OSU and Dr.John Giambrone of Arkansas U who believe the same as I do: mycoplasma can be prevented w/ clean stock and strict biosecurity.I know of disease free flocks and sources of birds(blood tested) so I refuse to be one who will own any sick birds. Zero tolerance for any and all chronic diseases,regards, )

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#15447 - 07/18/03 08:09 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


OK, I have a vet apt tomorrow, but think I will cancel it. I am going to approach chickens with the same philosophy I use with dogs. If you want disease resistance, vaccinate and treat if you get something. Those that do not develope resistance are lost from a breeding program.
Next questions: can I still eat eggs while chickens undergo antibiotic(oxytetrocycline) treatment? Will eggs laid prior to outbreak hatch and will chicks exhibit symptoms? The roosters seem to have symptoms heaviest, but all are overcoming this. Now, would I really have had to destroy a whole flock of infected birds had I tested and had mycoplasma come back positive? And, living on a farm, with wild birds cleaning up spilled dog food etc, what is the reality of preventing such infections?

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#15448 - 07/18/03 08:25 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Rob2 Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 03/28/03
Posts: 3068
Loc: Pennsylvania
I think the reality is if you baby the animals they will always be sick. Start pulling heads off sick chickens and or otherwise dispose of the sick and weak and you are selecting for healthy animals. I HAVE HAD CHICKENS FOR MOST OF MY LIFE AND NEVER EXPERIENCED ALL i HAVE SEEN people go thru on these poultry sites. My chickens have been exposed to all sorts of other birds at fights and shows and come back home and none get sick. How do so many get such sickly animals?

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#15449 - 07/19/03 04:15 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Bill Ludwig Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 2582
Loc: Ohio
Brig

If your not allergic to penicillin then eat the eggs, there will be traces in them. Do not let others have them just to protect yourself!
Crd does carry in eggs. If your flock was exposed before showing symtoms then yes the chicks could have it. Do you need to destroy the flock? Thats an individual management chioce. What are you willing to deal with. We all do things in different ways. rob has a very practical approach, if you dont keep sick or weak animals and dont breed sick or weak animals then you dont have many sick or weak animals. Others go to great lenghts to try and cure the problems. Its not a question of a "right way" or a "wrong way" of manageing you animals. Its the way each of us feels is best for us.
Also, try sending a PM to D Caveny in reguards to Mycoplasa. He has sent me info on treatment of it and claims he has seen success with treatment. Good luck!

Bill

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#15450 - 07/19/03 04:53 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Rob,from people not killing and then breeding sick birds or birds that have "recovered".
I too had not had any sick birds my whole life till one pair of birds came in w/ the mycoplasma.
Rob,if you got your birds blood tested you could be surprised.I'll bet my next paycheck that if your birds are as widely travelled as you say then they probably have several diseases you're not aware of...yet. Shows and fights are notorious places for diseases to spread,esp fights where the birds are exchanging bodily fluids.
Transmission of mycoplasma is vertical and horizontal in chickens,that is, contact w/ infected birds/feces/dander and through the egg
Briggadane,you're living a fantasy thinking you can breed this out.Your birds are not recovering,simply not displaying symptoms as much . That is what meds do w/ this disease,cover up the expression of symptoms, not cure it. It will get worse and the longer you keep sick birds the longer it will be around and that much harder to get rid of. There is NO treatment for mycoplasma that will cure it.Too late for vaccines but you may have to resort to that in the furture.
Eating your eggs won't kill you but it'll do what any unintended antibiotics consumption will do,create med-resitant strains of diseases that could be affected/treated w/ current technology.Most meds have a w/drawal time from eating.
If you insist on keeping your birds save the meds till winter when you'll REALLY need them as right now what you're doind is allowing the disease to evolve into a more med-resistant strain.FYI,I spent $400 in two mos/ last year treating 10 birds w/ antibiotics and to no avail. I just put them down as it was painful watchng them deteriorate.Sorry man,it definitely $ucks,ya got my sympathies, )

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#15451 - 07/19/03 05:07 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Bill,in my quest for a cure for my sick birds I talked ,wrote to and communicated w/ professionl breeders as well as researchers. Although I had been told by some of the breeders that they had cured mycoplasma in one way or another they all had to admit to anecdotal evidence of the "eradication" ,ie;no symptoms,of the disease as none had the birds blood tested. Not to disrespect Mr Cavenys' wealth of knowledge but I'd have to see blood tests before I'd believe anything.All the researchers I spoke to indicated that there was'nt any cure. regards, )

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#15452 - 07/20/03 02:43 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


If wild birds carry mycoplasma, then I don't see the possibility of eradicating it in backyard flocks. I practice more biosecurity than most, but my flock is in no way safe from diseases carried by wild birds or eggs or day old chicks. I don't go to sales. I don't bring birds older than day old chicks onto my farm. I don't go into other people's chicken coops. But that is not enough. My birds free range in the yard at times and at other times are in an outdoor pen. No biosecurity from wild birds there. I just don't see backyard flocks practicing the strict biosecurity that the commercial operations do.

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#15453 - 07/21/03 12:18 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
KazJaps Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 08/30/02
Posts: 2792
Loc: Australia
Brig, you can do a search on "Mycoplasma" through the archives here at The Coop. This will give you views from a wider group of people. Another good website on general poultry health issues is: Shagbark: Poultry Health Articles
This site has a lot of great advice.

Bluedog,

I'm in a similar situation.

After a few days of heavy rain, I can wake to see a field of ibis, spoonbills, cranes & a couple species of ducks having a great ol' time feeding on all the goodies, in the same areas that my bantams forage. Not to mention flocks in the hundreds of Corellas passing over-by or cheeky Galahs & Sulpha crested Cockatoos, Red-tailed Blacks causing heart pulpitations to the bravest of roos. Scaley-breasted & Rainbow lorakeets feeding in nearby trees, Crested Pigeons making a dive for feed in the pens & Rails (from the nearby fresh-water lake), darting across clear grounds, after a morsal of grain. Not to mention the neighbour's pet Brush Turkey wandering in to chook city. No one messes with this turkey.

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#15454 - 07/22/03 02:03 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Kaz,wow,that is some kinda cornucopia of avian life ya got there!
My sister lived down under for some years and she grew to hate the cockatoos that always chewed holes in her car tires. I guess they see it like chickens do styrofoam;just can't keep from pickin' at it.
I don't think or mean to imply all wild birds carry a strain of mycoplasma or other diease(thank goodness or we'd be in a load of trouble) but in areas where poultry is kept the transfer of diseases from one farm to another via wild birds can be an issue. This is esp true for feral birds like starlings and english sparrows which are particular to the company of humans.I don't know of any poultry keeper that enjoys seeing a flock of these winged rats descend on their yard, )

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#15455 - 07/23/03 03:03 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Bill Ludwig Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 2582
Loc: Ohio
Brig

This topic sort of took off in the direction of mycoplasma, but lets back up to the basics. What is thier enviroment like. Inside or out: what type of litter, is there any chance of mold or exessive dust. Any standing water they might get to? Anything like that you can think of? BTW how are they doing?

Bill

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#15456 - 07/23/03 05:54 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


What ever it is, it is not spreading. Only my Yokohamas and Cochins have it. And it is not going away.
I collected my current chickens just since May. They came from all over. None of my birds are over 2 years old, only 2 are over 1 year.
My first trial for bedding was shreded paper. I then moved to pine chips, NOT saw dust. It is very humid in Northern Ohio, we have been having a monsoon for the past 2 months. The floors are damp, but I rake often to keep things dry. I have been changing bedding every few weeks, since it has not had a chance to truley dry out. Water is kept outside, under an awning. Food is in a dry area of the floor. I have 2 nesting box sets, a 15 hole with perches, and a 10 hole with no perches. Boxes have shavings in them, and they have stayed dry. The run is grass. I keep it mowed and they eat the clippings. The yard slopes down to a pond, so no standing water in the pen. Lots of dampness. I have been raking the muck away from the door as it accumulates from birds going in/out. Almost all birds are molting, even one of the sitting hens. A friend of mine who raises racing pigeons feels I have a weather caused respiratory infection? They are on antibiotics, so that may be why no-one else is coming down with this? Egg production has picked up again this last week, since temps are now in the lower 70's, but it gets down to the 50's at night...
Again, the birds do not appear distressed or unhealthy. Eyes are clear, no swelling or squinting. They just wont quit blowing/snorting. They are not, and never have, been sneezing.

I am still in a quandery. If I should have a blood test, and it comes back positive for any type of Mycoplasma, is it really best to kill the birds? My Yokohamas are far superior to most of what is seen today. It would be impossible to replace their quality. I have color and comb on mine. Most breeders of this variety are still working on this....

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#15457 - 07/24/03 03:59 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Bill Ludwig Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 2582
Loc: Ohio
You say only some have symptoms, but I assume all are kept together? I have one hen that has always had a runny nose since a chick. I have had blood test done and all is well. She blows and snorts and shacks her head at times to clear it. We say she has allergies but I dont know if chickens can have nasal allergies. Since you have several with this it would indicate that its some sort of desease. Weather its self can not cause illness of course, but rather cause a desease causing orginism to thrive. Thats why I mentioned mold as a posibility. If it is a fungus than antibiotics wont help and may make things worse. I would go for the blood test and then you will know. Follow any suggested treatment ( Baytril ) and then retest. So many things can cause congestion in chickens :rolleyes: confused . Good luck!

Bill

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#15458 - 07/25/03 07:28 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Brig,well,"is it neccesary to kill them" is up to you. If it is mycoplasma you'll never get rid of it.Do I recall something about you breeding dogs? Ever heard of "kennel cough"? Sorta the same.As one of the folks on this board once said, and I take it as good wisdom,"you can deal w/ it now or deal w/ it the rest of your life".
Do the blood test on a bird that shows symptoms and a couple favorites(yokohamas etc...)to see how far it's gotten. If you have widely seperated caged birds some may avoid it but if they free range,ah,bummer.I wish you the best on this and a blood test will give you the best info on what to do.
Be careful about the Vet trying to sell you on expensive meds for chronic diseases.They may relieve some symptoms or prevent secondary infections but won't actually cure the problem...then again ,it depends upon the course of action you decide.
The fact that you got your birds from a variety of sources would generally not be a part of good biosecurity practices and would increase the chance of disease. If you have birds from different sources tested you may even see different diseases amongst the flock you have. It's depressing and amazing at the same time how many birds are diseased and what a rare and precious resource a healthy birds is. )

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#15459 - 07/29/03 07:55 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


I decided not to continue medicating after 14 days. The symptoms for MG were classic. Birds are gone. Took them in today. I am so sad. I discovered MG can only live 3 days max without a host. I am going to spray everything that came in contact with the birds with 10% bleach mix. I will be getting more chickens. I just have to figure out a good way to get started birds. I dont have what it takes to raise chicks from day olds. Hubby is OK with this as long as I get standard white eggs. Will post under appropriate topic for help on this.
Thanks to all for the help on identifying this. I would truly have felt bad putting the birds through such a sad life as cronic MG.

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#15460 - 07/30/03 05:52 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


I have a whole new approach to snotty nosed chickens and other ailments,I isolate them treat them for 3 days, if I see no improvement its OFF WITH THEIR HEADS ! I guess I am learning the hard way[thank Goodness I am evidently not too old to learn],its just not worth my time to try to save birds that should be put down. I have tried most of the methods and treatments and now just do the hard deed and get on with it before the whole flock is infected.
Janet Tallon

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#15461 - 08/03/03 11:17 AM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


Wow! Briggadane,that was brave. I was wondering what you would do. You have my sympathies as I went through it too.That was 5 mos ago and I'm still depressed about it.I've tried to re-up on birds but this mycoplasma stuff is so prevalent it's hard to find birds w/o it. I've had to send birds back to two breeders after blood testing showed their birds had it. This after they swore their birds had no illnesses.Both "experienced" breeders of 20+ yrs.
Don't be in too much of a hurry to get new birds. The 3 day life span w/o a host means free floating mycoplasma germs not embedded in oraganic material. If there are feces,feathers or other such matter about the disease can live for over 100 days.Also,most sterilants are neutralized by organic matter. Oxine is good but bleach is cheaper but ruins things,unlike oxine @ $40/gal. Formaldehyde is one of the most effective disinfectants second only to glutaraldehyde. Both can be purchased online or get formaldehyde from pond supply stores. REALLY nasty fumes though.
Shovel out the area and remove from the property or bury deep the contents of the coop or area where they stayed.
If they free ranged all dirt is suspect until after 100 days. Good luck w/ your new birds whne you get them.

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#15462 - 08/04/03 05:46 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Anonymous
Unregistered


I cant live without the chickens. The day they left I came home and bleached everything- coops inside and out, ceilings and floors, GRASS, dust areas, nesting boxes. I filled a 20 gallon drum with water and bleach and dropped all waterers, feeders and equipment in. It rained in between. Then I mowed the lawn and bleached everything again, concentrating on droppings and debris I couldn't pick up. I even used a sprayer and bleached the chicken wire.
I found another flock and will have them tested this week. All appeat healthy, no discharge or any sign of what I had before. Hopefully this is over.

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#15463 - 08/04/03 06:13 PM Re: crusty beak, blowing noses
Bill Ludwig Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 2582
Loc: Ohio
Best of luck to you!!!!!

Bill

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