Question with answer about bird

 Long post: Blackhead Disease

I had the vet out this morning to discuss mitigations and concerns following one 10 week old poults death that was confirmed blackhead disease.  My fear was he would say cull the whole flock.  He was in communication with the expert on blackhead in our state and he is very knowledgeable on poultry.  Below is all the questions and answers I had.  Please talk to your own vet.  This is just what mine said. 

The flock  : i have  2 “pet” recessive blue slates a Tom and a hen I use as breeder stock. I sell some poults hatching eggs each year and keep some for meat. 

5 BBB meat turkeys intended for meat this year

4 (now 3 with the one death) heritage blue slate/bronze meant to either breed or sell depending

3 hatchling 2 week old recessive slate that were going to go into the breeder stock

Blackhead pre vet treatment: started the whole flock on cayenne pepper in the feed and b12, oregano oil, rooster booster, and ACV with garlic in it.  

Vet questions I had everything is pararphrased

Q: do I cull everyone 

A no, no one else seems sick at this time. Best treatment and prevention of them getting sick is regular worming. It’s on lable for turkeys. 

- he will get me dosages, withdraw times, and schedules 

Q: can I eat the meat birds 

A: yes, it does not effect the meat.  

Q: what about secondary infections that can be present like ecoli

A: that lives in the bowel don’t eat organs and clean and cook the bird properly this is a risk when you eat store bought turkey as well 

Q: are they now carriers I don’t want to pass this to other people if I’m selling my birds what’s the appropriate disclosure? Can I sell hatching eggs, poults that never hit the ground? What about older birds and poults that have been on the ground? 

A: that’s a good question no one has ever asked before, not enough people care 

- I do I don’t want to knowingly pass this to people 

A: I don’t know if there is such a thing as a “carrier” for it i will ask the state expert and get back to you. 

Making the disclosure you had blackhead before and that it is recommended to worm turkeys regularly regardless if they have ever been near it or had it is a good recommendation for anyone ever and that is a very honest and moral way to handle disclousure if you wanted to 

Q: what now?

A: worm everyone start a program and keep to it. Continue everything else your doing. Worm young birds too before they are in the flock.  

Q: should I be prepared to lose more from the flock

A: yes, be prepared. They may not have it now they may never get it if you work them.  It may be low enough worming will be fine.  No one is showing signs or symptoms yet so we may be able to stop it but we may not. 

Q: any other mitigations I should take with the way my coops and mixed flocks are laid out?

A: no it looks good.

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