According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, backyard chickens are likely to be sources of an outbreak of Salmonella in the U.S. Salmonella is a group of bacteria that live in human and animal intestines.
These bacteria come from poultry, raw meat and eggs and are known to have infected around 768 people in 48 states. Salmonella is highly contagious, but not from one person to another.
It is commonly spread through contaminated water and food. Salmonelosis can also attack cats, learn the symptoms of salmonellosis in cats.
Chicken is also one of the animals that can be infected by Salmonella. The main reason of chickens get Salmonella is lack of hygiene. If the chickens are kept in conditions where they get exposed to feces, infected rodents and contaminated surroundings, they will get more chance to become infected.
If you have a poultry, you surely don’t want your chickens to get infected by Salmonella. Also make sure to get prepared with challenges of breeding chicken.
Here are some ways you can do to keep your chickens free from Salmonella. Follow these practical tips and you will surely get your chickens Salmonella free.
- Control the Rodent
Salmonella is a virus spread by mice and other rodents. It’s important to keep the chicken feed in a sealed container. If your hens feed outside, try to bring food in at night and store it in a rodent-proof areas.
Besides, keep the coops in a good condition and well-ventilated along with tight construction. This is done to prevent mice from entering. Lastly, remove weeds and piled debris as they will attract rodents to come in the chicken yard.
- Clean the Coops
Poor hygiene is another cause of Salmonella in chickens. Remove some damp litter as it may accumulate in the chicken coop. You can also hang the feeders and waterers high enough so that the chickens won’t defecating or digging dirt into the containers. Moreover, disinfect and clean any used equipment right after purchase, even though you are not going to use it immediately.
Bedding is also a particular risk for the disease. Keep the bedding clean and free from any poop. Make sure to deep clean the coop at least twice a year by using a good quality disinfectant. Also follow these following tips on how to keep chicken coop smells fresh.
- Vaccinate Your Chickens
Not only making sure the surrounding doesn’t trigger the spread of Salmonella, but your chicken’s health also matters. In the U.S., vaccines can be found as they are sold in doses of thousands to accommodate the factory farm and it will make the small-flock farmers hard to find one.
However, don’t worry. Small-flock farmers can contact veterinarians to make small quantities of the Salmonella vaccine available.
- Keep Your Chickens Healthy
Besides vaccinating your chickens, you also have to make sure that all your chickens are healthy by strengthening their immune system. You can do this by offering them the right food and healthy treats. Consider natural source nutrients too, such as weeds and some plants.
- Good Egg Hygiene
Chicken eggs can also be infected by Salmonella. To avoid this, you can make sure to keep your incubating and hatching equipment clean. Keep your brooder clean too.
Clean it right away after you finish the incubation and again before you begin the next batch. Get to know these 5 signs your chicken will lay egg.
Another way is by keeping the nests clean and lined with fresh litter. Collect the eggs often and store them immediately after collection at 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Soiled, cracked or leaking eggs should be discarded.
If you wish to consume eggs that are Salmonella free, make sure the eggs are completely cooked with a solid yolk and firm white.