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The Essential Guide to Rehoming Battery Hens
Category Archives: Chicken Health
I thought I had another hen with a nasty disease earlier today….. Whilst standing and watching them eat and scratch around, I noticed one of my chooks had a large black mark on her back where she has a few feathers missing. Having lost one hen not long ago, I was convinced I had discovered something hideous that was about to wipe out my flock and possibly civilisation as we know it. OK, a slight exaggeration but I was very concerned. So whilst she had her head in the feed trough I went in and gently lifted her up. Parting … Continue reading
Civil Eats, an American blog reports that: “Despite recent crowing by the United Egg Producers—an agribusiness trade association—evidence shows that the national trend toward cage-free eggs is growing.” They also report that “Hellmann’s mayonnaise announced it that will convert to 100 percent cage-free eggs; all Wal-Mart’s private line eggs are cage-free; and Burger King, Subway, Wendy’s, Quiznos, Carl’s Jr., Hardee’s, and Golden Corral are just some of the major restaurant chains that now use cage-free eggs, many of them with increasing percentages each year. “ This is all fantastic news. To see the full article go to
It’s now nearly four weeks since we rehomed our latest hens and Liz is still treating them for Scaly Mite. Every morning Liz cleans their feet and legs in warm water and uses a little Swarfega to remove the previous days vaseline. Liz then liberally coats all the scales with a fresh layer of vaseline. This is to suffocate any scaly mite still left under the raised scales.
Some of the new hens have been pecking the other girls’ tail feathers. To prevent infection and further pecking Liz has sprayed their bottoms purple. Hens are attracted to blood and will continue to peck and make it worse if action isn’t taken.
The second day after we got our latest battery hens, we noticed one of them had a deep emerald green wing. She didn’t seem in discomfort and was eating and drinking quiet happily yet her wing was an extraordinary colour. You can see the green in the photo, though it really doesn’t do it justice. Liz was quite concerned as it didn’t look like normal brusing however it also didn’t smell or appear to be causing problems so she called the
I’ve found most information on hen mites talks about dusting your chickens after you’ve found a lice or red mite investation. Personally I prefer the “prevention is better than cure” route, so we dust our girls every six weeks. Routinely dusting your hens is labour intensive however its essential for their health and happiness. Some hints and tips when dusting: Don’t wear your Sunday best as you will end up wearing almost as much dust as the girls! After you’ve dusted the first couple of hens for the mite, the rest of the flock will cotton on to what’s about … Continue reading
Worming chickens isn’t a terribly exciting topic I grant you but it is essential non the less. There are various types of wormer products on the market from herbal to prescription only from a vet. Through experience, I would personally recommend using one prescribed by a vet. This is because our hens picked up Gape worm (yes Gape not Tape) and the herbal product we were regularly using didn’t prevent or cure it. Gape worm is a serious problem and will kill the hen if left untreated. Worming is especially important if your girls are static in an enclosure and … Continue reading
In American there is currently a massive salmonella contamination scare which has focused attention on the way egg manufacturers produce eggs. And at long last this is helping making more people in the USA become more aware of the inhumanity of Battery Hens: “Roughly 90 percent of the eggs distributed in the United States are produced through a system consisting of ‘battery caged’ chickens. What this means is the egg laying hens are confined in cages that only allow 67 inches of cage space, which is not even enough room for the birds to spread their wings. As a result … Continue reading