How to Get Your Poultry Dewormed

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Several types of intestinal worms cause problems for poultry flocks. Among the most common ones is roundworms (Ascaridia spp.), cecal worms (Heterakis spp.), threadworms (Capillaria spp.), and tapeworms (Raillietina and Choanotaenia spp.) While a small composition may not denote major clinical problems, high worm causes include diarrhea, depression, reduced weight gain, weight loss, anemia, worms in eggs, and overall decreased egg production.

Birds become infected by ingesting worm eggs from feed, water, litter, or grass contaminated by feces or through ingestion of an intermediate host like earthworms, grasshoppers, snails, slugs, flies, and beetles containing worm eggs. Worm eggs can survive in the environment for long periods and are resistant to killing by common disinfectants.

When to deworm

  • Deworm birds on a routine schedule,
  • Deworm birds when there is a high worm burden. Many veterinary clinics or diagnostic labs can evaluate the worm burden in a bird or flock through examination of feces.

The best approach for deworming your flock will depend on many factors including the size of your flock, if your birds are housed in a coop or if your birds have access to grass pasture, and the history of intestinal worms in your flock.

Available treatments

Fenbendazole is currently approved for treatment and control of roundworms (Ascaridia spp.) and cecal worms (Heterakis spp.) in chickens and turkeys in the United States. Fenbendazole is available as a medicated feed labeled for use or in a water-soluble formulation to be added to drinking water for use in chickens. No withdrawal time is required for consumption of eggs or meat from treated birds when administered according to label directions

Consult a veterinarian for assistance in the diagnosis, treatment, and control of intestinal worms in your flock.

For any farmer, having a healthy flock constitutes increased egg production and therefore essential to keep a healthy flock.


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