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Los Angeles Urban Chicken Enthusiasts Message Board › Roundworm infestation in yard for my free ranging chickens

Roundworm infestation in yard for my free ranging chickens

vickie p.
user 21810341
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 66
just got back from vet, chicken has roundworms, got meds for all 3 of our chickens. chickens all happy and fine... but the vet told me i need to eliminate roundworm from my yard in order to prevent another infection.

Good lord i can't imagine how to go about this and have begun my research. who has time to eliminate 3 inches of top soil from your yard? do people do this? how on earth do you all manage?

my plan was to rake up real good around the area and maybe TRY to scrape the top surface off and discard. i wouldn't do this to my grass because there is sun hitting it and well i don't want to get rid of my grass.

this all just sounds crazy. isn't the presence of worms kind of a live with it deal? i've had my chickens for bout 4 years...does my yard become completely unsafe for my children and chickens now without a total overhaul.

ugh. looking for some sort of advice that seems manageable short of spending ton of cash on landscape redesign, locking up my chickens in an enclosure, or moving out!

thanks everyone, been a while since i've been it
Laura B.
Group Organizer
Norco, CA
Post #: 523
hi Vickie,
sorry about your new issue... good thing we have each other here because with chickens is one surprise after another! :)

I would not remove your top soil, I agree with you, it's kind of crazy... is that what the vet recommended? Probably I would make sure the run area and coop are dry and clean from poop... I myself pick up their poop every single morning and throughout the day as time permits... I would use DE to dust their entire areas too...

I personally would give them lots of probiotic, lots of turmeric, and cayenne pepper... and of course ACV... all the natural remedies for good strong healthy guts.

There is a product called Verm-X, looks great, organic and made with herbs for worm issues too - Haven't tried it myself but I'm sure I will order it! :)

Good luck and I'm eager to hear others' suggestions on what to do with your soil :)

Karen C.
user 83873082
Palos Verdes Peninsula, CA
Post #: 40
Vickie...Here's the link to a good article on roundworms. Certainly don't think ripping up your yard is the answer. This is good preventative information for all of us! Good luck...
vickie p.
user 21810341
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 67
ah yes the chicken chronicle post, thank you i did read that and bookmark it because it was natural and seemed like a good ongoing preventative regime i can easily use. Laura thank you i think everything you mentioned sounds reasonable and about all i could handle anyway. i like the de dusting and the good thorough cleaning.

i let them free range all day every day which seems to be the problem...they are all over. ahh well i have my work cut out for me. i think more diligent poop clean up is going to be the order of the day.

from my reading i think the thing that really stuck out was that the sun will kill the worms. now my lawn is in the sun but over the years the trees have created more and more shade, i like this because those trees protect them from hawks..but i think this is precisely what has allowed these buggers to proliferate....that and perhaps a very busy schedule that has kept me less vigilant about the chickens. time to button up all the loose ends..

thanks for advice, hoping to get more tips on free range all day small back yards and the proper maintenance over the years to keep things running smoothly. :)

Amanda G
user 12128708
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 185
Vickie you are never going to be able to remove all the worms from your chickens yard. Worms are a fact of life when raising animals. They are always going to be there. The key is as Laura said to make your birds as healthy as possible and make their gut as inhospitable to worms as you can. Pumpkin seeds, cucumber seeds, shredded carrots, garlic, ACV, tumeric, cayenne .... Some people (me included) add a drop or 2 of dish soap to their waterers once a week or so. I use Shaklee Basic H nautural soap, which farmers have been using as a wormer for years. I believe the key is keeping the worms under control at a healthy level... But I really do believe there is no way to rid yourself of them entirely. Some people put their chickens on a bi annual chemical worming program and others just try to keep them under control... It's really up to you. Chemical pusher will tell you your hens will die if you don't worm them.... They try the scare tactics... You really just have to do what you think is best for your girls. That's all we can do...

There is also an all natural product made by fiasco farms called Molly's herbal wormer or something like that....

Good luck but don't panic....
A former member
Post #: 211
I agree with the philosophy here that a certain number of pathogens and pests are in the environment and gut of all animals (including us!) Our immune systems need to be challenged to remain effective and strong, so keeping the routine, food and water and environment of the hens as regular and healthy as possible is the best defense. Humans like to eliminate things they view as the enemy, but with that you create a biological niche where something worse can move in. It never works. Look at our over reliance on antibiotics and bacterial resistant strains now popping up.
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 329
Here's one more vote for balance. I assume that my hens have some worms, and I just simply don't worry about it. I give them grated carrot every day, and I try to make sure that they are as well-fed and stress-free as possible. That's it. Every animal that passes through your yard (wild birds, rodents, raccoons, possums, skunks . . . ) has its own load of parasites, and some of those are getting deposited 24/7. Guaranteed. The only way to have a sterile yard, and sterile hens, is to go the nuclear chemicals, concrete and chain link route. Then you have yourself a factory farm.

Your vet is doing his due diligence in offering the advice to get rid of the worms, but only because he stands to be sued or lose customers if he takes a laissez faire, worms are ok attitude. Those of us who are seeking a natural balance would understand that point of view, but just think of how many of his customers would run screaming if he tried to suggest that it's ok for their pets to have a minimal level of gut parasites.

Now if you are losing birds to worms, that's something different, but it still seems to point in a direction of improving overall health, rather than just singling out the worms as the problem. Wild bird populations are a good example showing that healthy animals can sustain a parasitic load as long as it doesn't get out of control. The sick animals succumb because they get run down, and the parasites take advantage of the weakness to overpopulate.

No need for a nuclear solution. If your hens are happy and active, they're fine. Just don't kiss their butts.
Amanda G
user 12128708
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 186
Well said Cynthia!!! Vickie when my reply posted I saw your follow up about free ranging your hens and thinking that was to blame. I dont know where you got that or why youd think that, but free ranging is the best thing you can do for your hens!!! Sunlight, fresh air, plants bugs is a chicken paradise!! And yes Keep the tree cover to protect from hawks!!!

Chickens get parasites from eating slugs, worms, snails .... Poop from wild birds etc etc parasites are everywhere it's just a matter of keeping them in check.... Happy hens are healthy hens.... And it sounds like yours are!! I only wish I could let my girls free range all day.... Too many critters on my hillside looking for a chicken snack :(

Don't crack down just keep encouraging beneficial gut bacteria & create an inhospitable environment for the worms!
Laura B.
Group Organizer
Norco, CA
Post #: 525
yes agree with Amanda... free ranging is the best... most of mine free range all day... they all eat all kind of yucky stuff, even from their own poop... I have even seen them eating droppings from rats, EWWW! and not mention WHOLE mice... I got a problem with rats and mice (slowly but surely controlling it now without poison), but they get to eat mice they catch almost daily... imagine the organisms found on that!

I rather err on the side of being too relax and going natural... I do pick up their poop from their coop every day for the only reason that they all rather sleep on boards and not poles... and I want to know they have clean boards every night... and in the process I pick up big poop from their run area as I see it...

Other than that, as the others have stated, it's all about nutrition... I love that we have a group that is so health conscious... and we are all learning together a balance when it comes to our chickens... can't expect them t to be vegetarians like me simply because they are SOOO carnivorous and scavengers... so, yes, balance is important

user 4148344
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 108
Round worm is transmitted fecal /.oral contact
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