Written by: Dr. Jacquie Jacob, University of Kentucky
Poultry can suffer from a number of diseases and conditions related to metabolism.
- Sudden death syndrome (SDS), also known as flip-over disease, is characterized by the sudden death of birds that show no clinical signs of illness. SDS is believed to be a metabolic disease related to high carbohydrate intake.
- Ascites, also known as”‘water belly,” is a disease in which fluid accumulates in a bird’s abdominal cavity.
- Green muscle disease, also called deep pectoral myopathy, is a degenerative muscle disease that affects the breast tenderloin (minor pectoral muscle) deep within the breast.
- ‘Fatty liver hemorrhagic sydrome’ is a metabolic disorder that can occur when chickens are fed high-energy diets but have limited exercise to use up that energy. Diagnosis of the disorder is based on the sudden death of chickens and the occurrence of liver hemorrhage and fat engorgement when the chickens are necropsied. The disorder is controlled by balancing the levels of energy and protein in the diet. Supplementing the feed with selenium may also help.