Author: Tarbox

Use Green Tea to Prevent Avian Influenza

Use Green Tea to Prevent Avian Influenza

Green tea has been grown since ancient times, making a traditional tea that originated in China and has become a popular brew in Japan and China. Green tea leaves contain antioxidants and flavonoids. The compounds in green tea are known to be very effective in 

Learn How to Make a Self-Feeder for Poultry

Learn How to Make a Self-Feeder for Poultry

While there are many types of containers designed to feed chickens, here is a self-feeder that I have adapted that works well for my set up. I like it because it is efficient, keeps the food clean and allows the chickens to eat as much 

How Sweet it is Barn Lime for Your Coop

How Sweet it is Barn Lime for Your Coop

Silver Spangles Appenzeller Spitzhauben Flock

Consider Barn Lime for your Coop

Have you considered using barn lime in your coops? Also known as agricultural lime, ag lime, dairy lime. Barn lime is a phenomenal product that can be assist in lice and mite prevention in the coop. The way it works is, it creates a PH level and a dryer environment that makes it harder for lice and mites to survive, plus it is antibacterial, that will help keep bad bacteria at bay. Not only does it help keep your coop floor dryer, it also has potential to keep ammonia levels down too, keeping your poultry’s respiratory systems and immune systems healthier.

What is Barn Lime

What is barn lime it is a natural mineral known as calcium carbonate, crushed up to a coarse powder. It is safe for you to handle and safe for your farm animals, including poultry. It is very inexpensive selling for around $4 -$5 for fifty pounds, it can be purchased at most farm stores. Just be sure to buy sweet barn lime, not hydrated lime, “burn lime” with is caustic to people and animals if handled or inhaled.  

To use you simply apply to your coop floor after removing the soiled bedding. When I use it, I toss the barn lime on the floors, roosts and in nest boxes, any place mites or lice might be harboring.  I like using barn lime because, it will turn a wet smelly floor into a dry clean smelling floor, then I top the lime with a wood chips bedding. It also works well in cat litter box to remove the ammonia smell.  

Whie Ameraucana Pullets

It Many Uses in the Garden too!

It is naturally organic and has a wonderful place in the garden too. It does many things to help your garden by increasing water and nutrient absorption, it supports good bacteria and beneficial microbes of plants. It has also been used to repel garden pests as a vegetable bug dust applied topically or by mixing with water and spraying on tomatoes, potatoes, cucumbers and other garden vegetables, to deter aphids, potato beetles, squash bugs and cucumber bugs.

Black Ameraucana Bantam Flock

I add a couple tablespoons in the hole when I plant a tomato and pepper plants, it neutralizes the soil and gives plants a nice growing boost. My dad in his 90s, speaks often of how they used garden lime in place of garden chemicals generations ago, when, chemicals were not available, it had a common place in the garden. I love the stuff because it has so many beneficial uses in my coops and garden, plus it is so inexpensive.

Avian Influenza Strikes Flock in Iowa 2022

Avian Influenza Strikes Flock in Iowa 2022

A single case of avian flu has been diagnosed in Council Bluffs Iowa region. If the disease moves west it could be a huge challenge for Nebraska poultry growers. Officials in Iowa substantiated the occurrence of this extremely transmissible disease, week of March 3rd, 2022, 

Best Way to Water Chickens

Best Way to Water Chickens

If you own chickens, you know how messy their water pans can get. They can take perfectly fresh water and turn it in to a pooy bacteria nightmare in a matter of minutes. Most of the traditional water pan system allow for chickens to drop 

English Crele Orpingtons

English Crele Orpingtons

TarBox Hollow Poultry Orpingtons

Beautiful birds, wonderful temperaments and they are excellent layers of large brown eggs. Full plumage and large size birds a pleasure to own, they are wonderful exhibition birds. Good winter layers very winter hardy.


TREATING POULTRY DISEASES WITH GREEN TEA

TREATING POULTRY DISEASES WITH GREEN TEA

GREEN TEA & COCCIDIOSIS There have been multiple studies conducted using green tea for the treatment and prevention of avian diseases. In a study done in Korea where green tea was added to poultry feed, there was a 50% reduction in coccidiosis oocyst output, while maintaining 

Lice & Mite Prevention

Lice & Mite Prevention

Lice & Mite Prevention Lice & mites are minute external parasites that live off of poultry, they are extremely resilient to all types of environmental conditions, including freezing cold temperatures. They are vicious blood-sucking pests that invade your coop attacking poultry compromising their health. Consider 

Preventing Respiratory Illness with Poultry

Preventing Respiratory Illness with Poultry

Keeping chickens healthy in the winter, can be more challenging, than the greener times of summer, when they can munch on weeds and bugs, that naturally keeps them healthier. Closing chickens indoors for protection from the adverse weather can set up the right conditions for creating an ammonia filled environment, which can harm the sensitive airways of chickens. Ammonia is formed by an excessive buildup of feces and wetness in the coop.  High levels of ammonia in the coop, can lead to respiratory illness. The illness can be a problematic condition.
Belgian Quail d’Anver
causing egg production to drop off, and even death. Classic symptoms of the disease are coughing, wheezing, discharge from eyes and nose, sitting in a slumped position with ruffled feathers and often a lack of appetite. While many diseases cause this ill-fated condition, respiratory illness caused by ammonia may be one of the easiest to prevent.   

Take these Steps to Keep your Flock Healthy  

  • Check bedding daily making sure it is dry, avoiding the formation of ammonia.
  • Block any drafts, preventing cold air blowing directly on your birds while they roost.
  • Good ventilation is a must, consider installing wall vents and or box fans.
  • Feed good quality feed with ample clean drinking water daily.
  • Look at ways to keep feces out of feed and water pans, try covering pans partially covering, hanging or raising up feeders and waters.
  • Do not overcrowd them.
  • Use bedding that is low in dust.
  • Add 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar per gallon of water using a non-metallic pan, it is an antiseptic that potentially destroys bad bacteria, encourages water consumption, and it supports good digestive health.
  • Boost their immune system by supplementing their feed regime with probiotics, vitamins, and electrolytes.
  • Use agricultural lime in the coop, spread a thin layer under the bedding when you clean, it an inexpensive way to help keep your coop dryer and cleaner. Agricultural lime has a high pH component that naturally destroys the bacteria that creates ammonia and is safe for chickens and other animals. It is used commonly in barns also known as barn lime and it is also beneficial for landscape and garden. Be sure not to confuse it with hydrated lime, which is not recommended for chickens.
  • Consider the administration of essential oils, many large broiler farms are feeding oregano in place of antibiotics. See “In Hopes of Healthier Chickens, Farms Turn to Oregano,” New York Times. Oregano has natural antibiotic and antiparasitic properties currently are being studied as an antidote for coccidiosis and infectious bronchitis. Orego stim is an excellent source of oregano designed for chicks and chickens, developed in the United Kingdom, it is very economical and easy to administer in adding drinking water.
  • Take steps to ensure they have a healthy living environment, by ensuring their living area is kept dry and clean coop regularly avoiding pile-up of ammonia causing manure.
  • If you smell ammonia, so can they, it’s time to clean 😊 

Treatment

 

While managing your flock to keep them healthy, sometimes they still acquire a respiratory illness. Consider keeping an antibiotic on hand in your first aid kit, see your veterinary for a recommendation. Rosemary essential oil can assist in treatment, mix 15 drops to 1 tablespoon of cooking oil and mix well. Apply rosemary mixture to head, neck, and underwings to help clear airways.

 Blue Birchen Maran cockerel 7 months old

Good Care Strategy

Chickens are tough, with resilience to all sorts of adverse conditions, and as you may know, it is much easier to take care of a healthy bird, than treat one for an illness. The best strategy is to develop a daily care plan that includes a clean environment and quality feed with additional nutrients to support excellent health from inside out. Manage your flock with these good animal husbandry practices keeping ammonia caused respiratory issues to a minimum.

A healthy flock will yield healthy chicks

 


8 Ways to Reduce Respiratory Illness in Poultry

8 Ways to Reduce Respiratory Illness in Poultry

In the winter months, as the weather turns colder, chicken keepers are forced to keep their birds shut indoors to protect them from adverse weather conditions. Confinement indoors can create conditions, triggering respiratory illness in poultry. The respiratory systems of chickens are very sensitive to