I was all prepared to blog about cute coop and run accessories this evening, until I went out in the run and found some fresh chicken diarrhea (don’t worry, pictures have not been included). I went into a little bit of a panic. We figured out the chicken with the problem was Sweet Pea, our Salmon Favorelle hen.
I sat down and observed she was eating a lot of bindweed. The greenery all around Sweet Pea in this picture is bindweed. So far the internet hasn’t been very useful if it is safe for chickens to eat or not. Some sites say it is mildly toxic, or is a laxative, others say it is fine. To be safe I ripped out a lot of the noxious weed
In the process of ripping all that out I found even scarier things, all sorts of assorted hardware. I was just sick when I saw all of this. I have gone over the run several times, but missed this stuff in the tangled mess that is bindweed. We built our coop over an entire year and things clearly were just dropped and left. After this I was worried about hardware disease. Problems of course can occur if your chickens eat something like this, and they will sometimes eat anything.
As I watched Sweet Pea I observed that she was acting normally. She was still eating and drinking. She was her usual spunky self for sure. I checked her vent and it was clean. As I have done more research I am pretty certain that the diarrhea was caused because it has been very hot these past two days. When it is hot a chicken can drink more than usual in a short period of time which can lead to loose stools. I decided to add probiotics to the chickens feed just for some peace of mind. Probiotics can be very useful to a flock. It won’t help if the chicken has eaten hardware though.
The girls ate away at the feed without hesitation. Sweet Pea let me pet her for a little while. Then she jumped down and pooped, and lo and behold it was entirely normal.
I worry way too much, but at least I got some nasty stuff out of the run.