Coccidiosis In Chickens Symptoms
Coccidiosis is a parasitic disease that affects chickens of all ages, and it can be devastating to your flock’s health. It’s caused by the protozoan parasite Eimeria, which can live in the intestines and ceca of chickens for years. While not all species of Eimeria cause disease, some do. In fact, there are seven different species known to affect chickens: E. brunetti, E tenella, E maxima, E necatrix, E mitis, and two strains of E acervulina. The first four are considered the most pathogenic; they’re associated with a more severe form of coccidiosis called acute coccidiosis, whereas the last two are typically associated with chronic coccidiosis. The symptoms you’ll see in your flocks depend on which type(s) of parasite they’ve been infected with and how long they’ve been sick.
Coccidiosis In Chickens Symptoms
Many of the symptoms of coccidiosis appear to be similar to other illnesses, including bacterial infections or other diseases. Some birds may have no symptoms at all. Symptoms can be divided into two categories:
- Clinical signs, which are visible signs that indicate illness and include diarrhea, fecal matter in droppings, loss of appetite and weight (or poor growth), unusual behavior such as lethargy, weakness and uncoordinated movement
- Subclinical signs that indicate an impaired immune system but may not actually be visible
What Is Coccidiosis?
Coccidiosis is a disease caused by a protozoan parasite. It can affect a variety of animals, but is especially common in chickens.
The parasite that causes coccidiosis, Sarcocystis sp., enters the host through the digestive system and invades the cells of various organs throughout the body. A severe infection can cause death in young chicks or result in stunted growth and reduced egg production in adult hens.
5 Signs and Symptoms of Coccidiosis in Chickens
- Diarrhea: This is one of the most common symptoms of coccidiosis in chickens, and it may be accompanied by blood in their droppings. The feces can even sometimes contain large black particles that look like coffee grounds.
- Bloody Droppings: Coccidia parasites can also cause bloody diarrhea in your birds, which might be more noticeable when it happens with other signs like weight loss or stunted growth.
- Loss of Appetite: If your chicken does not eat well for days at a time, this could be an indication something is wrong with their health — especially if they’ve been eating normally before this change happened!
4 . Stunted Growth , Poor Feather Growth : A lack of appetite isn’t just about eating less food—it’s about eating less nutritious foods as well (if any at all). That means if your bird isn’t eating enough nutrients over time, they’ll start losing weight and growing poorly too! This might happen right away or down the road depending on how long ago these symptoms first showed up–but either way it means something needs attention now!
Why Do I Have Coccidiosis in My Backyard Flock?
Coccidiosis is an opportunistic disease, meaning that it can take advantage of any weak spot in your backyard chicken flock. This can include poor sanitation, dirty litter, or other conditions that give Coccidia the chance to infect your birds. Some common causes of coccidiosis in chickens include:
- Poor sanitation
- Poor ventilation
- Poor nutrition (too many scratch grains or treats)
- Stress from overcrowding and/or new environments (moving them into the coop for the first time)
How Do I Prevent Coccidiosis in Chickens?
- Provide a balanced diet.
- Provide fresh water.
- Maintain a clean environment for your chickens to live in. This includes keeping the area dry and making sure that the chickens have enough space to run around and exercise, as well as providing them with plenty of ventilation so they can breathe easily.
- Keep any other birds away from your flock (for example, wild birds) if possible, especially during periods when they are most susceptible to coccidiosis infections such as just after molting or when breeding seasons are coming up during springtime across most climates globally!
- Vaccinate your chickens regularly against coccidiosis by using vaccines against Eimeria tenella (Coccidiosis Type B), Eimeria adenoeides (Type A), Eimeria maxima (Type C). Do this at least every six months or more frequently depending on how much exposure there is risk involved such as living conditions or being near large populations of other livestock animals which may carry these parasites themselves ehem… *ahem*.
How Do I Treat Coccidiosis in Chickens?
If you have a flock of chickens, treating coccidiosis is essential. There are medications available that are used to treat the whole flock, but it’s best to speak with an avian veterinarian before giving your chickens any medication.
If you’re interested in treating your chickens yourself, there are several different medications available including:
- Poultry Coccidiostat (Disease Control) Medicated Feed Additive – This product contains sulfamethazine, which is approved for use on poultry from day old chicks through adult birds. This product cannot be used if you have laying hens or turkeys.
- Coccicide (Cox-S Plus) Medicated Feed Additive (Merck Animal Health) – This product contains oxytetracycline and monensin sodium in single doses for young chickens and turkeys up to 28 days old; double doses for older broilers and layers up until 42 days old; triple doses for older broilers and layers over 42 days old; and quadruple doses for roosters over 28 days old when they reach sexual maturity.
Even if you never get to the point where you’ve got a full-blown outbreak on your hands, it’s important to recognize coccidiosis symptoms early, treat it effectively and do what you can to keep the disease from ever happening.
Knowing the signs of coccidiosis can help you treat it early. Coccidiosis is a common disease in backyard flocks, and is caused by an intestinal protozoan parasite. It’s most common in young chickens, but older birds can also be affected by the disease.
The symptoms of coccidiosis can be difficult to notice at first, so if you suspect that your flock might have contracted this parasite, take a closer look at their behavior and appearance. You may notice some of these signs:
- Droopy wings
- Decreased appetite (or refusal to eat)
- Diarrhea or runny stool (which can contain blood)
It’s also important to recognize that this disease seems to pop up in backyard flocks more and more often, which is why it’s so important to know the signs of coccidiosis. That way, you can catch it early, treat it effectively and do what you can to prevent a future outbreak.