Chicken Losses to Disease - Any Suggestions?
(Bullsbrook, WA, Australia)
We have had our worst year ever for chicken deaths from disease... Mareks Disease, Infectious Laryngo Tracheitis (ILT), one where they vomited and died quickly, and a fourth one I haven't identified, where they are sleepy and depressed for weeks before dying.
Our birds were mostly young (around 6 months old), unvaccinated, and kept penned - but not crowded. I was giving them a very good diet including heaps of daily greens, plus cider vinegar in their water.
Interestingly, the diseases struck particular pens (breeding lines) much harder than others.
I have cut down the numbers dramatically (lots of chook in the freezer now) and let the small flock that's left free range during the day, now that there's green feed out there for them (the rain just started). I've also started giving them a little granulated garlic in their feed each day.
1. Does anyone have some "old wisdom" on keeping chooks healthy?
2. Can anyone tell me what diseases 3 and 4 might have been?
Any suggestions would be very welcome!