Gapeworm

johanna_h(Z5 SW MI)May 9, 2008

I think one of my hens has gapeworms. The information I'm finding on the internet is not helpful so far.

Is there a specific wormer for gapes, and do I need to get it from a veterinarian?

I have to go to work for a while, and I can call my vet later in the day, but I thought someone might be online with the answer!

--Johanna

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johanna_h(Z5 SW MI)

I've been trying to track down information all day. The local feed stores don't have a wormer that will address gapeworm. A clinic at Michigan State University would be happy to examine the chicken, but that's a two hour drive at least! They also mentioned that if it is gapeworm, then their run is probably infected and they should be off of it for five years!

Someone suggested feeding the chicken tobacco. That sounds like a folk remedy to me, and I suspect that tobacco has a toxic level for hens like it does for others.

I'm really hoping I'll get home from work and the hen will be fine and I'll never know why she was doing the mouth thing this morning!

--Johanna

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 3:31PM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

Click on this link to my site, and scroll down to 'Worming & Dusting' to read about Gapeworm, it's symptoms and treatment:

http://jackshenhouse.com/VSChickHealth.htm

Gape is pretty distinctive: birds stretch out their necks and open their mouths as if they have something in their throat (they do, the worms) over and over again. Sometimes they shake their heads as well. Gapeworms are basically roundworms that prefer the trachea area to infest. Most feed stores carry horse paste wormer, which is what I use to treat.

Tobacco is on the 'Toxic To Birds' list, here:

http://www.plannedparrothood.com/plants.html

I wouldn't use it. Likely there is a specific amount you can feed to kill the worms and not the host, but if the bird is already weakened by the parasite, that's taking a chance--and I have no idea how much tobacco might be 'safe', if any. If the bird is already infested, you need to go with the sure-fire cure right away.

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 8:05PM
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johanna_h(Z5 SW MI)

Well, I appear to have suffered from a moment of hysteria. The hen is fine, no more "yawning"!

Phew!

--Johanna

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 7:56AM
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critterkeeper

SO far this is the best soap opera episode I have read on this forum yet. Thanks!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 4:36PM
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lindakimy

Critterkeeper, I just posted another one!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 9:53PM
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