Poultry illness is very different from human illness. When a chicken gets sick, most of the time, it then becomes a carrier of that illness for life and can then infect other birds in the future. Poultry diseases are extremely common and hard to avoid. Some can be cleaned up quickly with antibiotics while others can produce devastating losses. It is recommended that all new birds (no matter how healthy they appear) be quarantined from all existing birds before introducing them. After 2 weeks with no display of illness, you may want to first introduce 1 of your birds to the new quarantined birds to see if that bird begins to show signs of sickness which would indicate the new birds were carriers. After 2 more weeks with no sign of illness, it is now time to combine your flock.
Here are some helpful links to learn more about how to protect your flock
Most of the poultry vendors at the swap have been breeding/raising and even showing poultry for many years. They take very good care of their birds and are full of knowledge and love chatting about all things chicken. Use this opportunity to ask questions and take it all in. There is so much to learn and the more you do learn, the easier poultry keeping can be.
Can't wait til Swap Day!
Biosecurity for the Birds is an anitiative sponsored by the USDA to keep your birds healthy. It's filled with useful information.
The Poultry Site is the "go to" spot for all things poultry related including diseases, mycotoxins, statistics, intestional health as well as treatments and preventative care.
The Chicken Doctor has been helping poultry enthusiasts with their poultry problems for over 20 years. He is a wealth of knowledge and is available for consultation if you need him