Coccidiosis –This is a parasitic disease of the intestinal tract, it is why blood could be seen on the droppings of the chicks. Caused by coccidian protozoa (1). This will compromise the digestion/assimilation of nutrients in the intestine and will mostly become fatal if left untreated (high mortality rate).
Infection starts by ingestion of infected or contaminated material. The contamination could be from anywhere to anything, (could be from anything in the feed supply chain, your shoes, wheels etc) until gets contact with the chicks.
We spray effective microorganism to the brooding area and transition range twice a week, somehow this will help the chicks suppress coccidiosis in some degree. The sooner you notice a blood mixed in the feces the sooner you treat them. With these early detection there will be no complication to the health of the chicks. But noticing the droppings are relatively time consuming, a preventive medication are applied.
But don’t worry this is easy to control, on the farm, we use sulfa drugs (sulphonamides) to control this. Add a preventive application to their water in the 10th day of the chicks, and repeat every 14 days until they are older than 3 months. Or again, you could just monitor the feces and if you see some evidence that the droppings has blood mixed therein, apply a treatment application to the whole batch. The blood evidence at first is just a tiny part of the droppings that became redish in color until it will be literally a blood in the feces.
Remember even this is easy to control it has a great mortality rate if left untreated. It could wife the entire batch as this is easy to be transferred or infect the other chicks. Aside from the blood on the droppings, look for typical signs like chicks having ruffled feathers, pale, cold and listless.
We don’t see chicks older than 3.25 months gets infected by coccidiosis. The conclussion to our system is the chicks already developed immunity with this age.
Note: Many had lost their batches because of this simple but catastrophic disease, application of wrong drugs won’t save the entire batch. Remember use sulfa drugs for this one.
- Dr. Salsbury’s Laboratories. Dr. Salsbury’s Manual of Poultry Diseases. Charles. p 9
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