Dandelion and Flame are both moulting and looking really shabby.
I feel so bad for Dandelion losing feathers when it is now so cold. Flame also has pins on her wings and very few wing feathers left. When she raises her wings she has just one outside feather on each wing with a bare framework of pins over the rest of her wings.
Flame’s front is just a mass of loose feathers. I tried to get a photograph but she was reluctant to show me her front. I held up a spinach leaf to get her to stretch up.
This wasn’t the shot I was aiming for but it’s so funny that I decided to keep it in.
In other news Smoke has laid an egg three days running, missed a day, then laid her fourth egg. Each egg has been very slightly bigger than the one before. Ebony is also still laying although less frequently.
I had finished five days of tylan and yesterday stopped putting it in the water. Dandelion has been spending time in the shelters and Cinnamon often keeps her company and sometimes Speckles joins them too. These original three girls still tend to stick together.
Late afternoon when Dandelion was in the shelter I noticed that she was dozing and her tail was bobbing up and down. This is not a good sign and I recognise it as a symptom of the mycoplasma.
When I checked them at bedtime I stuck my head into the chicken shed and listened to Dandelion’s breathing. She was wheezing. I decided to start back on the tylan in the morning.
I mix one teaspoon of tylan powder to one litre of water and put it in the two water dishes. To give the girls an extra boost I mixed another half teaspoon with half a litre of water and added it to four dishes of pellets to make tylan mash.
As the girls drink less water in the winter I felt that taking it in the mash as well would give them a bit extra.
I am really frustrated that we just can’t seem to shake this. All of the girls are sneezing but they are all looking okay and the fact that Smoke and Ebony are laying is a good sign. Up until yesterday Dandelion was looking okay especially as she is moulting. But the weather turned much colder yesterday and we had a heavy frost last night with the chickens’ water dishes frozen this morning.
Today the temperature didn’t get much above freezing and I think that is really not helping Dandelion. It is forecast to be slightly milder for the rest of the week so I am hoping that with less cold temperatures and the tylan plus the boost of tylan mash today Dandelion will improve again.
I just want her feathers to come in and I wish I could put a little chicken jumper on her but that is not possible. I just have to hope we can get through this once more.