I’ve had three Black Star chickens since June last year and they’re very friendly and laying every day. They get well fed and are able to browse around the garden on an evening, but when I pick them up for their cuddle, they feel so thin and I’ve heard people mention their chickens having worms.

 I’ve been over to the vet suppliers and asked if they had anything for worms in chickens but the young girls there seemed a little confused and said they hadn’t anything for chickens. How do I tell if they have worms?  Will they be visible in their poo like in the cat’s? And what can I use if they have worms and also where can I obtain this?Many thanks, marvellous magazine, thoroughly enjoy reading it. Cindy Long, Westmuir by Brechin, Angus

The confusion may have arisen as the only licensed poultry wormer, Flubenvet, is now only available from a vet, no longer from an agricultural merchant, which is where you may have tried to get it. They would have been correct to say they didn’t have the product. Contact your vet and ask him to get you some Flubenvet which comes in a 250g tub and is a powder you mix in the pellets, (10g to 8kg feed – two teaspoonfuls to a black bucket of pellets – divide a 25kg bag of pellets between three buckets and you will have about 8kg). This needs to be fed for seven days, and you will find it helps to stir up the powder daily. The eggs can be eaten while this treatment is being administered. Some of the worms can be seen with the naked eye but not some of the more deadly ones, so it’s a good idea to worm hens at least twice a year, and more often if they’re on the same ground all the time. Contact CS if you have trouble obtaining Flubenvet. VR

Victoria Roberts BVSC MRCVSEmail the Vet’s forum at: vetsforum.csh@archant.co.uk

Disclaimer: The information and advice in this column is given in good faith. However, as the animals in question have not been examined by the author, no liability in respect of diagnosis or application of any treatments is accepted either by the author or by Country Smallholding

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