Jump to content
GillC

Nettex Nutri-drops - past best before date. Can I use?

Recommended Posts

Yesterday I collected three lovely new bantams - two silkies and a wyandotte. My other 5 happy healthy bantams are now aged 6 and 7 and have stopped laying and I haven't had a chicken live beyond 7 yrs 9 months, so I don't expect this lovely flock to continue for ever.

My three newbies were a bit hot and stressed after the car journey. The buff silkie (Buffy) worried me a bit as she just kept sitting down, but I thought I'd leave them to recover. The other two, a cuckoo silkie and red pencilled wyandotte seemed happy enough pottering around and pecking at the ground. They have their own eglu and tunnel and I will only introduce them to the others in the WIR when they are well settled.

This morning, the grey silky wouldn't leave the nest box and when I encouraged her out, she just sat on the ground lethargically. I put a trails cam out to check what they were doing during the morning, and I have footage of the other two, particularly the new top hen, pecking her. They obviously sense something is not quite right. I worried that she might be dehydrated as I'd not seen her drink or eat anything, so I gave her 4ml of water using a little syringe and popped her on her own in a small enclosure with a green eglu. She did seem to perk up and started pecking the earth. I gave her seed treats and she seemed to eat some of them. I also threw layers pellets down, but I can't be sure if she had any or not. The water I gave her seemed to make a difference and she looked quite perky. I left her a couple of hours, then as she had started to sit down again, I picked her up, gave her some time on my lap and another 3ml of water.

She is sitting on the ground again. I think she is just stressed out. She has done a poo which looked absolutely fine. I've felt her body and her crop is quite empty. 

I got my Nutri-drops out of the cupboard only to discover that their best before date was July  2018! Obviously I've had no problems with my hens for some time. I ordered more from Amazon but they won't be delivered until 8th - 12th April.

Should I risk giving her a dose of the out-of-date Nutri Drops? I've looked at the ingredients - Don't know what they are. Minerals and such like. Can they go off? Has anybody done this or am I just being really stupid to even think of it. If it is stress, will she just perk up tomorrow? She was fine when she arrived, but just seems really poorly now. 

Why did I collect chickens on an Easter weekend when everything is shut!!!! I attach a picture of her when she arrived (the cuckoo grey one), and another two of her sitting hunched as she is now. Has anybody else had this with a new hen? Do they recover?

 

IMG_8957.thumb.jpeg.455ead84fcfda920b25d98f42fc9addb.jpegIMG_8965.thumb.jpeg.35feb64ef36e19784171cd645e4989ef.jpegIMG_8965.thumb.jpeg.35feb64ef36e19784171cd645e4989ef.jpegIMG_8965.thumb.jpeg.35feb64ef36e19784171cd645e4989ef.jpegIMG_8966.thumb.jpeg.ae6d5be5b3278fa5b2734e4ab7119a35.jpegIMG_8966.thumb.jpeg.ae6d5be5b3278fa5b2734e4ab7119a35.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think if she were mine, I would have her in a henspital (dog crate or similar) somewhere warm where I could make sure she was eating and drinking. I would imagine the very worst that could happen with out of date nutri drops is that they would do nothing. I would use them but get some new as soon as I could.

Fingers crossed she perks up.

If it’s any consolation, I’ve picked up new hens and hatched on bank holidays and something always goes wrong and it’s always a nightmare - so it’s not just you!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You don't need nutri-drops so forget them; we wouldn't use them as we've found they seem to do as much harm as good as we've had birds slid downhill fast after a first dose. Water is very important, feed far less so. Concentrate on getting them used to their new environment and just make sure they have, and are, drinking water. 

She's very sweet. She's just stressed and will recover very quickly with TLC. Perhaps she's not used to being handled yet? If her poo's are fine she is in good health and it can only be the stress of the move. Looking forward to the new pictures of her settled in.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Beantree and Mullethunter for these helpful words. I’ve opened up the two eglus this morning. Buddy and Willow seem fine, though slow to emerge from the eglu. I’ve just left them to it. Cordelia is sat in her nest box. There is a bitter wind blowing so I’ve left her there (while I have breakfast). I will get a big box and bring her inside I think. I spent most of yesterday outside watching her and she did seem to enjoy scratching the earth and seemed to eat teeny stuff and corn. Spurned the layers pellets! I may try to make her a mash to encourage her to eat. Does anybody know how much water a bantam should drink? 

Edited by GillC
Typo!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Did you contact the breeder yet? He/she might have some good advice.

She might not realise the feeders contain food. You can try scattered around a bit too. Is she still in sight of the others? Chickens can get very lonely quite quickly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not yet, that’s a good idea. I’ve just moved her inside into the warm (it is snowing). She was in a run next to the WIR with my existing chickens. I’m going to see if I can get her to eat come porridge. Tonight If she seems OK, I may pop her in to sleep with the other two. In the morning, if she doesn’t get up, I could bring her in again, if she does get up and move around, she will be with her girlfriends and hopefully will be on the mend.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Spoke to the breeder this morning. She suggested nutri-drops. Thought porridge would be a good idea and said they've been on crumb. I headed out to the farm shop - couldn't find any nutri-drops, but got some layers mash. Cordelia is currently in a box by a tilt open door to keep her cool with water, layers pellets, layers crumb and porridge and scattered corn treats. She has stood up a bit and I've been giving her water. Eventually at about 4pm I cracked. Having looked up the ingredients in the past best-before date nutri drops I have, I decided to give her some. Needless to say she did not like the taste. I washed it down with some water and waited to see. She did seem to perk up. She pecked at the seeds and definitely had some of the mash. There was also a dent in the porridge and I could swear she was licking her lips, if she had any. She isn't moving around all that much but I was very encouraged by this little rally. I'm thinking of popping her back in the eglu with Buffy and Willow overnight, once they've gone to bed. I'll see how she is in the morning and if she still looks peaky I can bring her back inside, but at least she will have been with other chickens for 12 hours. The breeder offered to have her back, but I've grown very fond of her having spent so much time just sitting and watching her. I'm determined to see her through this.

Well, at least its kept me interested over the bank holiday :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well sounds like a caring breeder. Good idea to put her with the others over night. Sometimes it is monkey see, monkey do with eating too. So being with the others might help her too

Hope she perks up!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This morning, all three seemed to stay in the eglu after I opened it. I left them a while, then came back and encouraged the other two out. It is exceedingly cold here, and my other flock are all huddled in a sunny spot in the WIR so I perfectly understand if the newbies prefer the warmth of the eglu. The wind whistles up the slope below the eglu and though I've put several layers of protective covers on the run, the temp is still darn cold.

Cordelia didn't seem to want to come out at all, but looked otherwise Ok so I gave her another dose of nutri-drops and water. As far as I can see she has remained sitting in the eglu. I put some treat seeds in the eglu and she definitely pecked at that. I've wedged a small tub of the layers mash behind the roosting bars where it can't fall over but where she can feed on it if she feels like it. Just checking on her regularly now and hoping she'll perk up. The other two seem fine, though I've not seen them eating anything other than the treats I've scattered for them. I've left a trail camera out so I can replay and check what they've been doing. 

Fingers crossed!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've put one part clear/part opaque tunnel cover positioned normally. I added a triangular sunshade for good measure and over the top, I've strapped my old torn part clear/part opaque tunnel cover (see photo).  Looks a bit scruffy but it seems to be keeping the wind out. 

It is just bitterly cold. I enclose a picture of my newbies in their eglu and of my existing flock huddled in their WIR. 

 

IMG_8967.thumb.jpeg.56525a704fbf2a84f21e418ad4500dc8.jpegIMG_8968.thumb.jpeg.becc922fd13c4bbfb33f9aaa3a070a6a.jpegIMG_8969.thumb.jpeg.1dd36407f64e7ce71dc0f03a196a28de.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks. I just gave Cordelia some more nutri-drops and more water which seem to perk her up. I'd placed her in the run with the other two and they were all happily pecking away at some corn. Suddenly a very high wind blew up - my other five bantams started to freak out in their WIR. The newbies seemed to take it in their stride (I think the cover is protecting them well enough) from the wind. Now it is snowing quite heavily!!!!! Would you believe it. I went to shut them in for the night thinking they'd have gone to bed, but no! They spend all day in the eglu then when it is snowing, they decide now is the time to come out and peck around. Hopefully having dinner before roosting for the night. I'm beginning to believe Cordelia might recover, though she does feel rather thin. Fingers crossed

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

1 hour ago, mullethunter said:

GillC I have Dutch bantams exactly the same colour as your millefleurs 🥰

They are, or were, my little babies. They are dutch sabelpoots - two lemon and one porcelain. I got them aged 6 weeks and 8 weeks respectively and they really bonded with me. I can pick them up with one hand and feed them treats in my arms. They are so affectionate. The porcelain sabelpoot is bottom of the pecking order and when they are having treats, will leave the treats to come over to me to be picked up and cuddled. They are such a lovely breed, but I promised myself I wouldn't get anything with such long foot feathers, hence my return to bantam wyantotte and silkies (OK, they have a few foot feathers, but nothing like the Sabelpoots). No matter how often I poop pick (most days) they still manage to paddle in it and get huge lumps stuck on their toes. I have regular hen foot-washing sessions for the Sabelpoots where I sit with them with their feet in a bucket of warm water for about 10 minutes, gently massaging the grot around their toes until it dissolves/gently comes away. You have to be so careful of their little toes. Good thing they are so placid. They seem to realise that I'm trying to help them. Do you have the same issue? Any tips on avoid the foot washing sessions?

I do feel like I'm obsessing a bit about the new hens, but I've never had any stressed hen problems before, and I've been keeping chickens since 2007. At least with all these Covid restrictions, I'm around 100% of the time! 

2 hours ago, Cat tails said:

As you can handle her quite well, you could weigh her to see if she’s not loosing too kuch weight.

Thanks, that is a good idea. I like to handle my chickens as much as possible as I think it really socialises them. Also enables me to keep tabs on their health. I don't think she weighs more than 500g if that, so it will be a kitchen scales job. I'll be keeping that quiet from the rest of the family :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, GillC said:

Do you have the same issue?

Mine are Dutch bantams rather than Sablepoots so they don’t have feathered feet.

I did have a Sablepoot for a while - bought at auction as a pullet but I had to give him away after a few months when he was continually crowing at 5 in the morning - in the winter 🙄 He was absolutely lovely natured too and the way he had to run with his feet out to the sides to accommodate his boots always made me laugh. But no I don’t have any feathered foot advice I’m afraid. My pekin doesn’t seem to fare too badly somehow although her foot feathers are nowhere near as long as a sablepoots - lovely as they are I really would think twice about having another because of them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, mullethunter said:

Mine are Dutch bantams rather than Sablepoots so they don’t have feathered feet.

I did have a Sablepoot for a while - bought at auction as a pullet but I had to give him away after a few months when he was continually crowing at 5 in the morning - in the winter 🙄 He was absolutely lovely natured too and the way he had to run with his feet out to the sides to accommodate his boots always made me laugh. But no I don’t have any feathered foot advice I’m afraid. My pekin doesn’t seem to fare too badly somehow although her foot feathers are nowhere near as long as a sablepoots - lovely as they are I really would think twice about having another because of them.

They are soooo beautiful and nice natured, but yes, the foot feathers are a pain. I've never regretted getting them despite the work because they are so friendly.

My three newbies seem to be settling in. I can entice them out of the eglu with seeds and sweetcorn. Cordelia seems to be a little perkier. She is pecking the ground with the others, and I've seen all three of them near the drinker (the old fashioned type rather than the glug). I definitely saw her fill her beak with layers mash that I'd put on the ground, and she seems to enjoy seeds and just pecking the earth. They seem to be more active if I am sitting there talking to them, so I'm spending a lot of time in my 'chicken trousers' (a very scruffy and baggy pair of M&S jeggings) and two or three fleeces sat on a gardening stool talking to them as they potter about. I was planning to do this anyway to get them good and socialised, I just didn't anticipate that the temperatures would be so cold that I'd wake up to snow on the ground and their water would be freezing over overnight! Still, forecast is that it should warm up a little today. I'm not 100% confident that Cordelia is out of the woods yet, but I plan to stop syringing her water and nutri drops (she has had 3 days and they do seem to have perked her up) and just keep going out and talking to them to encourage her to eat. 

The others have stopped pecking her, which was a bad sign on day 1. Amazing how keenly they sense any weakness in the flock, and how quickly they move to eliminate it. They can obviously sense that she is on the mend.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cordelia has improved over the day - I think the worst is past! She is pottering with the other girls, pecking stuff off the floor and generally looking much happier. She is even holding her tail up (previously she was always 'tail down' whether standing or sitting, looking hunched and unhappy). I think she's got through it. Thanks for all the kind words and advice (which I've followed). To summarise

  • Saturday - arrival at about 4:30pm. Seemed relaxed and happy.
  • Sunday - wouldn't leave the nest box. I moved her by hand into the run, but later when I checked she'd not moved and was being pecked.
  • Sunday late morning - moved her to another eglu on her own where she mostly sat hunched unless I went in and scattered seeds, then she'd scratch about in a desultory way. Gave her water periodically using a syringe.
  • Sunday night - Spend the night alone in her eglu.
  • Monday morning - still lethargic. I was very worried so brought her into the house in a cardboard box. Bought some layers mash from the farm shop, but they didn't stock Poultry Power (replacement for Nutri-drops). I put mash, corn, porridge and water in with her, none of which she seemed interested in. Continued giving her water with a syringe.
  • Monday evening - really worried. Gave her the past best-before date nettex Nutri-drops. She immediately seemed to perk up and showed some interest in the corn in her box. After an hour or so, I put her in the eglu with the other two to sleep.
  • Tuesday morning - the other two left the eglu but she said in roosting. I took her out and gave her water and Nutri-drops. I put her back in the coop and she went out of her own accord and scratched around with the others.
  • Tuesday - checked her periodically during the day. Gave her water. If I put her out in the run she would scratch for a bit. All three tended to go back in the eglu as it was bitterly cold, windy and, at points, snowing!
  • Tuesday evening - more water and another dose of Nutri-drops and bed for the night in the eglu with the others. 
  • Wednesday morning - water and Nutri-drops and popped her at the end of the run. She and the other two scratched around. I gave them corn and sweet corn. They seemed happy.
  • Wednesday afternoon - checked them again. They all seem very happy. Enjoying treats and drinking from the old fashioned drinker. I'm sure I saw Cordelia eating some layers mash I'd put on the ground to encourage her. 3 days is the minimum Nutri-drop dosage, so as this is day 3 I plan to stop. 

Fingers crossed that disaster has been averted! 

Left to right - Cordelia (silkie), Buffy (silkie) and Willow (wyandotte).

 

IMG_9012_2.jpeg

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



×
×
  • Create New...