What Diseases Chickens Are Prone To?

There are several diseases that the chickens are prone to. Listed below is a short description of each of disease

Mite infestation in the flock

The mite infestation can be severe and can otherwise kill a healthy chicken in 3 days flat. Look at the bottom of the chicken, where the egg comes out. If this area is dark in color and seems to be moving, then you probably have a case of mite infection. There are several kinds of mites that can be found. Some of the most common ones are Red Mite and Northern Fowl mite.

The chicken can also show physical signs that they have a mite problem. Just check for the comb or the wattles and you can see if there is a mite infection. Also if the chicken has turned pale in color or is sulking in a corner, they probably have been infested with mites. Also look in the vent area for the infection. Other places are the ears, in the thighs and in the neck area also.

Coccidiosis disease

Coccidiosis or cocci as it is commonly known can wipe out the entire flock. This is a deadly disease and need only 96 hours to devastate the flock from start to finish. If the chickens are smaller, then the time can even become shorter. This is a protozoa parasitic disease and should be at the top of everyone’s list for prevention.

Physical signs of the disease show that the feathers of the chicken look as if they have been ruffled; they are sulking in a corner. After this stage, they will be oozing diahorrea and taking out clear fluid from their mouth in a stream. This parasite can be found naturally in soil. They can be bought to the farm quite easily through soil carried in shoes and boots.

Marek’s disease

This disease is spread through the air and your flock can easily get the diseases if a bird farm down the road has become infected with the diseases. There is really nothing much that you can do about this. This is a common virus that can devastate the rest of the avian population that you have in the farm as well. Mareks is a member of the herpes virus and will enter the body through the bird’s respiratory tract. The virus is microscopic and is carried through the dander of the chicken’s feather. The disease can’t be stopped.

This is a contagious disease but doesn’t spread to the egg. The diseases will usually hit the chickens when they are aged between 5 -25 weeks. Beyond that the chickens develop a natural immunity to the diseases. Depending on the type of the diseases, the chicken can also become paralysed in wings, legs and necks. Death may occur in these cases, as the chicken is unable to move or reach food and water. When this happens, it can kill the chicken.

Chickens are also prone to upper respiratory fungal infections

After the cold weather has gone and the sunny days are here again, chicken can suddenly seem to die for unexplained reasons. Actually there is an explanation, which is known as the upper respiratory fungal infection. Actually when there were damp conditions, mold had begun to form in the chicken coops. When it becomes drier, the molds develop spores and find a place where they can survive when these spores are inhaled by the chickens; they land in the lungs and the trachea of the bird that provides them with a warm and moist environment to grow. This gives rise to the upper respiratory fungal infections in the chickens. There are numerous types of such fungal infections and they can be quite deadly for the chicken.

Usually the birds are strong enough to ward off the diseases. However the young, diseased, weak and the old chickens may succumb to the disease. Many a time the disease may stay in latent form and erupt when the chicken is under stress. When infected, they can make gurgling sounds, sneeze, and stretch out their necks, cough and wheeze. These are the symptoms that they have the disease. Medication known as Oxine can help the chickens to fully recover from this disease.