Quarantine new stock
Q I am looking at getting a few new girls this year to join my flock of 13. I have been told that as mine are not vaccinated I should only get unvaccinated chickens. Is this true?
A Victoria says: Most hybrid hens are vaccinated as a matter of course against Infectious Bronchitis and Marek’s disease. Pure breeds tend not to be as they are hardier than commercial strains. Vaccinated chickens may be carriers of a disease without showing symptoms, so although the risk is low, if you have pure breeds, I would advise against adding vaccinated commercial hybrids. In any case, it is sensible to quarantine any new stock - many people view a quarantine area as a ‘luxury’ and a bit of an unnecessary idea, but they are potentially risking the health all of the poultry on their premises by not quarantining which may mean the destruction of many years of selecting for a great strain of a particular breed. Having a dedicated quarantine area is not difficult to create and may save disease transfer and heartache, as well as allowing worming with Flubenvet to be carried out and cider vinegar provision to reduce the stress of new premises and transport.