1 chick died.....other one all alone...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by sfogle, Nov 24, 2012.

  1. sfogle

    sfogle Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 4, 2011

    I have some questions about 2 baby chicks I have raised. We raised them from the day they hatched and they have just recently went into the chicken house. Not sure how old...probably close to 2 months. I found one of them dead this morning in the chicken house. I noticed before I put them up last night that it was acting strange...fluffing up it's feathers. I did not see any evidence that it was hurt by our older chickens, so I am really confused on what could have happened to it. So, that is my first question....anyone have an idea of what it was. It is cold outside here, but they are older chicks and stay together at night.

    The second part is that the chick that is left is very alone and seems very upset. It runs around in the chicken house not knowing what to do and runs up to me when I come in/out of the house. Is there anything I can do to help it? I don't think I can find another chick of it's size/age. It is a bantum, so even though it is older, it is still pretty little. Could I give it a pretend chick (some kind of stuffed animal), so it at least has something to sit by at night?

    Any suggestions/ideas on how I can help this lone chick survive and be happy would be greatly appreciated. I feel so bad that it is by itself. There are 3 other chicks out there with it, but they were hatched several days apart, so they will have nothing to do with it.

    Thanks in advance for your help!!
  2. GardeNerd

    GardeNerd Chillin' With My Peeps

    I am really sorry to hear of your loss. The chick is probably just as upset as you. However, she will adjust in a couple of days if you have other chickens. She might end up at the bottom of the pecking order, but is she is already in with everyone else, she will be okay. Are you sure none of the other chicks or chickens caused the death? Were there any signs of injury?

    There probably isn't much you can do for the remaining chick. I think the fake buddy thing only works with day old chicks, and even then, not so well. My best recommendation would be to distract her and the others and get them to mingle. Give everybody some treats that take a lot of time to look for, lots of time to peck at, or both. Spoil them. Or maybe let them have some fun by free ranging?
  3. StarLover21

    StarLover21 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 11, 2011
    I have to disagree. Two months is too young to completally merge the younger chicks with the older hens. They could be severley injured, especially if it is a single bird. I attempted to introduce a single bird around that age and she was pecked bloody.

    Unless your bird is already getting along well with the older hens, I would try to get it a friend to keep it company. You could try craigslist.
  4. GardeNerd

    GardeNerd Chillin' With My Peeps

    Unless I misread it, the OP said they were days apart, not weeks or months, nor any older hens in the coop. However, I agree, if there is a big difference in age, a smaller younger pullet put in with hens will get picked on to the point of serious injury, but not necessarily if the chicks are all a matter of days apart.

    Sfogle could possible jepardize the health of her singleton chick by bringing in disease from someone else's flock if buying a chick from craigslist. In good flock management, it is always best to quarantine any new birds for a month and practice biosecurity.

    The chick could be placed in a cage within the coop w/ its own food and water for as much time as needed where the chick can see other chicks, but not be injured until they get used to each other.
  5. StarLover21

    StarLover21 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 11, 2011
    Thank you for clarifying this.

    If they are a few days apart, then yes, they should definitally adapt. Give it time and hopefully they'll start to get along :)
  6. CluckyCharms

    CluckyCharms Chillin' With My Peeps

    I may not know much about chickens, but I do know what works for me. I would take the least bossy of the three older ones (the one lowest in their little clique), remove her from them, and place her in separate area with the new one. Make sure both of them have plenty of room to get away from the other or you'll just have a bloody mess on your hands (chickens need their own space even at that age). I'd do this only under direct supervision from you, and definitely not at night when you're sleeping and can't monitor their behavior (that's how some chickens end up with bloody heads and other gaping wounds). Do this every day for a few days and if they seem to be getting along well, then you should be able to place them both in the coop and the other two older ones will probably accept both, since they are already familiar with their hatchmate. They'll be curious and there will be a certain amount of "who the heck are you?" going on, and some pecking order establishment going on - but it should remain relatively calm...since the third chick knows her place with those birds already and she brought a friend along this time.

    If it doesn't work and they don't get along very well - try again with another of the three initial birds you started with (the older ones that think they own the whole coop). Try with each one if one doesn't work. I think you'll find at least 1 of them (if not all of them) will get along with the chick when they are 1 vs 1. There are three of the older ones and only 1 of her so they're haughty when they are together.

    To me, it shouldn't be about chickens "tolerating" each other, they should be a flock...a team...a unit (togetherness).

    Thus far, this *has* worked for me, with fish and with all of my chicks apart from nasty-tempered roosters...those go bye bye.

    [Edited to add] That was rude, I forgot to give my condolences on the loss of your other chick - so sorry she passed :(
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2012

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