Poultry Diseases & Prevention
Prevention of poultry diseases by providing nutritious feed, access to fresh, clean water, and adequate housing are important to the health of your flock. Good management and sanitation practices are essential as well. Proper ventilation in the brooder and coop will reduce moisture and disease organisms.
Caked or wet litter should be removed as soon as it forms to keep the house clean and dry.
For most backyard poultry enthusiasts, diseases are rare as long as the flock doesn’t come into contact with other flocks. The most common disease for young, un-medicated flocks is coccidiosis, which is characterized by diarrhea, un-thriftiness and some mortality. A medicated chick feed can help prevent coccidiosis.
Prevention of poultry diseases in commercial poultry requires the producer to actively enforce an effective/comprehensive bio-security program and to maintain an intact and functional immune system in the chicken. Understanding how diseases are transmitted is an important factor in developing a bio-security program. Studies have consistently demonstrated that approximately 90 percent of the time poultry diseases spread from one farm to another by contaminated people, poultry equipment, and farm vehicles.
Check your flock daily to spot diseases or parasites so you can start treatment right away. For more information about identifying, preventing and treating poultry diseases and parasites, contact your local veterinarian. Poultry veterinarians have been attempting to control diseases by improving bio-security practices. This emphasis on controlling diseases by bio-security practices rather than relying on vaccines and/or antibiotics has resulted from changes in the industry itself.