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Can Coccidiosis Be Managed Naturally in Chickens?


Can Coccidiosis Be Managed Naturally in Chickens?

Today let’s talk about something less fantastic when raising backyard chickens: coccidiosis. While raising chickens has been my favorite hobby ever, there are times when it can be a bit more challenging. Multiple diseases can wreak havoc on a flock, but a little knowledge can go a long way in when it comes to coccidiosis.  

 

What is Coccidiosis in Chickens?

Coccidiosis is caused by different species of coccidia. This parasite attacks the chicken's digestive system and can spread quickly in a backyard flock. A few years back, I sat down with a poultry veterinarian and asked all my questions about this nasty disease. Here’s a summary of that conversation, along with my own experiences.  

 

Basically, the signs and symptoms of coccidiosis are runny and bloody poop, lethargy, pale comb, weakness, fatigue, loss of appetite, droopiness and depression. However, these symptoms can also be signs of other general diseases and illnesses in chickens, so that’s why it’s best to separate them if you feel it’s necessary.

 

Outbreaks of coccidiosis often happen when your chicken's immune system is weakened. Most outbreaks occur when:

  • It's warm and humid

  • The coop is dirty or crowded

  • Birds have illnesses or malnutrition

  • There are sudden changes in their environment

 

Also, coccidiosis spreads easily. Parasites can hitch a ride on shoes, shovels, dirty water, food or poop.

 

How to Manage Coccidiosis in Chickens

Honestly, if a chicken in my flock got coccidiosis, I’d take her to the vet. Your veterinarian will likely treat your chicken with Amprolium, the most popular treatment for coccidiosis. Amprolium is not an antibiotic. It blocks thiamine uptake of coccidia, which prevents the disease. You will have to purchase this from your vet.

 

Several articles and opinions exist on how to treat chickens with coccidiosis naturally. Many people recommend apple cider vinegar, garlic, oregano, and other herbs and oils. I prefer to give my flock Chicken E-lixir™.

 

Chicken E-lixir is a supplement I give to my chickens that’s like a daily vitamin. Chicken E-lixir also has organic oregano essential oil, electrolytes, calcium, vitamins D and E and prebiotics. Chicken E-lixir helps keep their digestive and respiratory systems healthy and strong to protect them against challenges.

 

If you have a chicken showing signs of coccidiosis, the best thing to do is immediately separate them from the flock. Again, a disease like coccidiosis is very contagious and spreads easily, so it’s best to get the chicken in quarantine to stop the spread. If you feel a veterinarian visit is in order, I highly recommend trusting your “gut.” It may end up saving your whole flock!

 

4 Ways to Protect Your Chickens Against Coccidiosis

Here are some of the best ways to protect your flock from coccidiosis.


  1. Cleanliness: - Regularly remove droppings and soiled bedding to maintain a clean and dry environment in your chicken coop. - Parasites thrive in wet and dirty environments, so keeping your coop clean and dry is essential for disease prevention. - Wash out water containers and food bins frequently to minimize the risk of contamination. - Consider using Coop Recuperate™ in your coop to keep the bedding fresh and dry. It contains essential oils and diatomaceous earth that help deter parasites. - If you have visitors to your coop, make sure they have clean shoes or booties on.

  2. Provide Adequate Space:  - Overcrowding can stress chickens and increase their susceptibility to diseases like coccidiosis. Provide ample space for your flock to roam and avoid overcrowding in the coop.

  3. Good Nutrition & Immunity: - Ensure your chickens receive a balanced diet rich in essential nutrients to support their immune systems. - A healthy diet strengthens their natural defenses against parasites like coccidia. - Healthy chickens will build up a natural immunity to coccidiosis over time.

  4. Quarantine New Birds: - Before introducing new birds to your flock, quarantine them for at least two weeks to prevent the spread of diseases, including coccidiosis. - Monitoring their health during quarantine allows you to detect any signs of illness and prevent potential outbreaks.

 

While raising backyard chickens is a blast, knowing the different diseases and ailments they can have helps keep chickens healthy and at their best.

 

Taking good care of your flock is of the utmost importance, and that’s why I love Strong Animals Chicken Essential products! They are so easy to use, and I know I’m giving my flock high-quality nutrition that will give their digestive, immune and respiratory systems everything they need to thrive and prevent challenges.

 

Until next time,

 

–The Wing Lady

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