Despite the most attentive chicken keeping, one of your birds will get sick sooner or later. It’s essential to have the ability to recognise the signs of illness and act fast — chickens are good at hiding their symptoms, so by the time you notice, they are generally very sick indeed.
If you believe that your chicken is ill…
A veterinarian always gets the best possible way of helping your birds and will have the ability to diagnose any issues with far greater details than any online source.
This article is a useful guide, but merely just guide — your vet is your best solution!
Diagnosing chickens is a huge challenge: they hide their symptoms, and could not let you know what’s wrong even if they wanted to. Furthermore, lots of the external symptoms aren’t specific to any one illness.
–Not drinking or eating
-Weakness or lethargy
-Pale comb or wattles
-Diarrhea or abnormal droppings
-Fluffed up feathers
-Other unnatural behaviour
If any combination of the above describes your chicken, she might be sick, and you need to take her into the vet ASAP to get specific diagnosis and treatment.
Symptoms of respiratory disease
Respiratory illnesses manifest unique symptoms in contrast to most other ailments.
Again, it’s practically impossible to get a backyard keeper to recognize the specific illness in question. You have to take your chicken to the vet for diagnosis and treatment. This will often involve antibiotics that your vet may prescribe.
General treatment choices
If, for some reason, you can’t bring your chicken to the vet immediately, then there are a few simple things which you can do to improve her probability of recovery.
–Isolate her from the rest of the flock to avoid any possible spread of illness and decrease bullying from healthy chickens.
-Keep her in a well ventilated and dry location.
-Provide a lot of water and food. Give treats if she will not eat her normal food-eating anything is better than nothing.
-Give a teaspoon of yoghurt for a few additional probiotics. Do not overdo it as this may lead to diarrhoea.
At times, a little TLC might be a chicken wants, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry. After you’ve gone to the vet, it could be worth checking your coop setup — windy dust and loopholes are a common cause of illness, and repairing these issues will help keep your flock healthy.
Some disorders have particular symptoms (in addition to those described above) which can help with home identification.
Coryza: [respiratory] Extremely swollen eyes, and a very rancid odour.
Coccidiosis: Occasionally leads to bloody faeces.
Avian flu: [respiratory] Dark, reddish spots on legs and comb, and sudden death. This disease can infect people, so be extremely cautious if you suspect it. Report any cases to the community government immediately.
Impacted harvest: Swollen crop (a pouch in the front of the body), which is very tough to the touch.
Sour harvest: Swollen harvest, which can be mushy to the touch, and a rotten odor from the mouth.
Botulism: Tremors of increasing intensity, end in death.
Bumblefoot: Infected wound .
Egg binding: The bulge of a stuck egg at the exit to the port.
Frostbite: Pale, slightly blue comb or thighs.
Pasty butt/vent gleet: Droppings caked over the buttocks.
Mites or lice: Pale comb (from blood loss), and compact insects among feathers.
Worms: Proof of worms in droppings.
If your chicken is acting strangely, but does not appear to be showing signs of illness, they might just be broody.
Broiler chicken feed comes in many forms, such as mash, pellet and crumble. Mash typically results in certain waste because of disturbance of grains (coarse particles) from different ingredients and nutritional supplements that result in the flicking behaviour of chickens. This problem is solved in pellet feed that produces uniform proportions and enhanced digestion of nutrients in broiler chickens. Crumbles include an additional measure to pellet manufacturing by taking the pellets and crushing them in consistency that is courser than mash.
There are several advantages of feeding poultry with pellets rather than mash.
-Pelleting reduces waste of chicken feed, water soiling, and discerning eating behaviour in chickens
-Reduces bulkiness of feed by 15 — 18%
-Reduces Salmonella, E. coli, molds and much more, and destroys growth inhibitors, such as trypsin inhibitors and gossypol during processing
-The pelleting process solves mixing difficulties, incorrect particle sizes, and ingredient separation
-Ends in the saving of 15-20% of broiler chicken feed cost
-Produces a greater nutrient density, increases the availability of vitamin E and B12, also improves digestibility and ME value of certain ingredients, thereby increasing animal performance when creating superior feed efficiency
-Studies like those of Chewning et al. (2012) establish that pelleted feeds outperform comparable mash feeds in broiler hens .
The Function of Pellet Quality in Chicken Feed
Pelleting involves conditioning raw materials by adding heat and water in the form of steam. The conditioned feed ingredients are then compacted into a dense mass and formed to conform cut and pressed. The heat and moisture is removed through cooling so the ingredients can withstand reasonably rough handling without excess breakage. Pellets can subsequently be crumbled into smaller particles to enable the chickens to absorb the feed efficiently.
McKinney & Teeter (2004) reported that pelleting contributed 187 kcal/kg of diet because of broiler chickens resting more between foods. They also found that the energy value declined as pellet quality diminished. Components, particle size, temperature, moisture, length of conditioning, and pellet parameters are key variables influencing the physical quality of pellets. Pellets that are good show enhanced durability to withstand the different attritional drives on the pellet. This is especially true of these forces which are encountered during transportation of the feed into poultry farms. The procedure for crumbling imposes stress on the pellet and creates fines that reduce the physiological quality of the feed.
In a study , Lemme et al (2006), they discovered that good quality pellets led to the highest weight gain of broiler chickens when compared to chickens offered inferior quality pellets or rough mash. Furthermore, they found that chickens that ate mash required higher levels of lysine to achieve the same performance as pellet-fed hens .
How Can Pellet Binders Improve Chicken Feed Quality?
Pellet quality depends on feed processing equipment, conditions, and feed formulation. Pelletability of feed components , depending on the presence or absence of natural binders and addition of artificial binders in chicken feed, are key formula factors that affect pellet quality. Since natural binders are required in high inclusion levels to succeed and frequently have high variability, a good quality pellet binder allows feed producers the chance for increased formulation flexibility, cost reduction per unit binding capability, and constant quality.
What Makes a Great Pellet Binder?
The maximum quality of pellet binders increase the efficacy of poultry feed by shielding feed from extreme heat and moisture. While 15 to 18% of fines are generated in the crumbling process. This improves overall quality by boosting pellet durability and significantly cutting down the number of fines in chicken feed.
Additional Advantages of Pellet Binders:
-Improve the output of broiler poultry feed at pellet mill by 10 — 15 percent
-Reduce energy costs by roughly 3 percent
-Shield the physical quality of pellets throughout transportation
-Crumbles with minimum fines can only be achieved with high quality pellets. –Chicken feed performance improves considerably when fines in crumble feed are minimalized, as evidenced by Lemons & Moritz (2015) research. More disadvantages in crumbles requires reprocessing that increases costs and also reduces the nutrient value of ingredients. Broiler poultry feed trials with crumble feed comprising premium excellent pellet binders showed a feed conversion ratio improvement of 4.8% when compared to crumble feed with no pellet binder. Pellet binders save money, time, and resources and also can improve the quality of your stock by enhance the quality of the feed.
While the jury might still be out on this one, what we do know is that eggs would be the cherry on top when it comes to poultry keeping. But how much can you really know about these gems that are wholesome?
We are here to set the facts straight and also inform you exactly what you might ever want or need to learn about eggs!
What is an Egg?
A chicken egg could be either fertilized or unfertilized, and is the perfect little package (an average-sized egg weighs about 50 grams, however this will vary based upon the chicken breed), comprised of seven basic parts; the casing, membranes, the albumen (white), the yolk, the chalazae, the germinal disc and the air sac. Each one of these parts have a specific work to do and serve a particular function.
The eggshell is a really intriguing piece of engineering, housing the entirety of these eggs components inside. It’s composed almost entirely of calcium carbonate, and covered in tiny pores, which give the egg its grainy texture. The casing is a semipermeable membrane, which is just fancy talk for significance that moisture and air can pass through it’s pores. Additionally it is protected by a thin outermost coating called the’bloom’ or’cuticle’, that acts as a natural barrier against external pathogens such as bacteria and dust.
The egg has 2 membranes-outer shell membrane and inner shell membrane, which both sit just inside the shell surrounding the albumen (white). These super strong transparent protein membranes, which can be made partially of keratin, have the function of protecting against bacterial invasion. The outer membrane is secured to the egg shell, whereas the inner membrane sticks into the albumen.
The albumen, more commonly called the’white’, is composed of vitamins, minerals, protein and water and is made up of three primary parts-an inner, middle and outer layer, each of varying depth which surround and protect the yolk. These powerful layers contain plenty of proteins which in a fertile egg can assist with the chicks development, or if sterile, will be passed on to us!
The yolk is the fundamental portion of an egg, and while generally yellowish, its color may change based upon the chicken breed, which range from a light yellow to a deep orange. This tiny powerhouse is where the majority of the proteins, minerals, vitamins and fats of the egg are housed, such as Vitamin A, D, phosphorous, calcium, thiamine and riboflavin.
Chalazae are a part of the egg and are sequences of twisted tissue positioned at opposite ends of the yolk. They play the important role of stabilising the yolk and germinal disk to stop twisting and misalignment from the egg.
Also referred to as the egg cell, or blastodisc, the germinal disc sits on the surface of the cover of the egg yolk and is the ‘powerhouse’ of the egg, as it is where the sperm enters the egg. It is here that the embryo will form by a process of cell division and expansion after fertilisation has occurred.
Sometimes called the ‘air space’ or ‘air mobile’, the air sac forms once the contents of a newly laid egg cools, causing them to contract. This air sac rests between the inner and outer membranes in the eggs bigger end. As the egg matures and not get fertile, the air sac will expand because of moisture and carbon dioxide leaving the egg, and air going into the egg to replace them.
So now you understand just what constitutes these all natural wonders, you are likely asking just how a hen can make this kind of protein packaged product?! Keep reading to find out…
A productive egg layer does first and foremost be based on the chicken strain, so ample research ought to be undertaken in this respect if you are wanting chickens for the sole purpose of the egg producing capabilities. In addition to this they have to be given a balanced and nutritious diet (high in calcium and protein ), fresh water, lots of sunlight, in addition to nesting boxes which are conducive to egg laying (fresh straw, broad, and from the way of direct sunlight or drafts).
A female chicken is born with a complete complement of eggs inside her body, and depending on the strain, will create many or hardly any eggs through the years. Chickens have thousands of miniature ova, which are undeveloped yolks in their gut, and if they’ve matured, an ovum is going to be released into the oviduct where it begins it’s great journey of growth. A hen can have many eggs at various stages of development inside her reproductive system at the same time. Those at the start of their journey are only small yolks, whereas the eggs which are farther down the oviduct are markedly larger and more developed. It takes about 25 hours for an egg to reach the vent prepared for planting in the time it leaves the ovary. Within this period the yolk will expand and become encased from the albumen, wrapped in a membrane and then enclosed in a pigmented shell-voila! Fresh eggs for everybody!
The first stage of embryo growth happens in the blastodisc (germinal disk ), which will become known as the blastoderm once fertilised, and it includes genetic material from both the chicken and the rooster. If housed in the perfect states, either via incubation or by a hen, these cells will then develop into a chick embryo, where it will grow and further develop, getting nourishment from the yolk and albumen.
We think it’s safe to say that there’s definitely far more than meets the eye when it comes to the humble egg. Next time your hen lays one of these beauties take some time to applaud and appreciate these natural wonders!
WATCH THIS SHORT VIDEO AND WE HOPE YOU’LL FIND THE ANSWER AFTER…Please leave some comments if you find this interesting. Thanks!