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Almost two week old chicks, found DARK & TARRY brownish red droppings

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ChIcKeN_DiNnErS, Jun 5, 2011.

  1. ChIcKeN_DiNnErS

    ChIcKeN_DiNnErS Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 1, 2011
    I'm completely new to chickens and I have 6 almost two week old chicks, just noticed yesterday night, that there are dark and tarry brownish red droppings in their crate! I'm not sure if it's coming from only one chick or more than one, and am worried about their health. Watching them, nothing seems out of the ordinary --behavior-wise, I talked with my grandfather about it and he thinks it might be something like Cocksideosis or some type of toxicity?? Can someone tell me what is wrong, and how can I fix this? Will my chicks die?? Every place is closed today and so will have to wait until monday, but would love to hear from someone who might know what I can do TODAY. Please help me!!

    Tanya
     
  2. ChurkLover

    ChurkLover Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 9, 2010
    St. Louis
    I am sorry this is posting much later than you had hoped. I hope you found help for your chicks and they are all doing well. What type of food are you feeding them? What type of watering pan/bowl do you have setup? What bedding are you using in their crate? You answers could help us figure out what is happening.
     
  3. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Probably cecal poop, it's often runnier than their usual, kinda orange colored, and lots smellier. Adult chickens do it too, but since chicks are smaller they do it much more often. You're probably seeing them "half dry" is why they look darker brownish red. It's perfectly normal.

    Cocci usually shows up as blood in the poop, and the chicks act sickly.
     
  4. ChIcKeN_DiNnErS

    ChIcKeN_DiNnErS Out Of The Brooder

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    @ChurkLover: They are eating Purina Start & Grow (Medicated which I bought myself and non-medicated-which is the first bag I recieved free with the chicks). Their bedding is Drynest Pine Shavings, and they are using a metal feeder for their food and a self-watering dispenser, both of which I have raised up higher off the floor with large shallow bowls in Ziplock bags under each to compensate for their growing size. They are living in the house, in a 4ft long x 3ft. high x 2ft. wide wooden crate (Which I lined with a large cardboard box, and large paper garbage bags that I cut to fit, and about 2 inches of the shavings on top of that. When I totally clean their crate (which is every other day) I take the chicks out and put them in a box with shavings in that, remove the food and water dispensers, then I just carefully roll up the paper garbage bag with all the soiled shavings and dump it into a garbage bag to take to the town dump. Replace with another paper garbage bag cut open to fit, and the shavings etc. etc. I then clean out both dispensers with a mild detergent and water (thoroughly rinsing), refill them and put them and the chicks back into the crate.

    Unfortunately, I haven't found anyone who really knows anything about chicken poop in town, but the chicks are still lively and seem to be thriving. I'm thinking that it might be what Tala said:
    "Probably cecal poop, it's often runnier than their usual, kinda orange colored, and lots smellier. Adult chickens do it too, but since chicks are smaller they do it much more often. You're probably seeing them "half dry" is why they look darker brownish red. It's perfectly normal.

    Cocci usually shows up as blood in the poop, and the chicks act sickly.

    Thank you Tala for your posting, it makes sense to what is happening with my chicks. Yes, it is EXTREMELY stinky stuff, and I've had to wash numerous chick feet. I stood and watched the chicks for over an hour, until each one pooped at least once. The nasty droppings, did not reappear, each one had "normal" looking poop! Crazy, I thought. Then it wasn't about a few hours later did I notice the nasty droppings. I continued to keep a hawks eye on them for a few more days. I've come to the conclusion that they seem to do this regularly, and I couldn't tell you how relieved I felt! Since it was the first time noticing those kind of droppings, I was so worried they were going to drop like flies, from what I read on Coccsidiosis! Lol, I feel almost silly now, freaking out about it. The chicks are sprouting feathers left and right now and are growing like fluffy weeds, running around their crate chirping away![​IMG]
     
  5. dlynne1123

    dlynne1123 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 6, 2011
    I was wondering about the runny poop too. I have several ages, from 2 weeks to 20 weeks, and occasionally find it in the run. Wasn't sure if I should be alarmed, with my dogs I'd be worried!!

    Feeding chick starter, chick finisher and egg laying pellets. For the older one we just sprinkle the ground b/c she seems to be a hunter/gatherer type, rather than a food bowl girl. We water daily with a 2 gallon waterer.

    Bedding is shavings only b/c I heard straw can get them sick from mold.
     
  6. ChurkLover

    ChurkLover Out Of The Brooder

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    It sounds like you are doing everything right and the chicks are healthy. Just normal (if there is such a thing) poops for their age. If it was a consistently nasty, stinky poop with bright yellow, then I would think of an infection but the living conditions, food and water are all as they should be so keep up the good work.

    @dlynne1123 - I sometimes still see a runny poop and I think it is okay as long as it is not consistent. On really hot days, I notice it more than others. It should not be happening all of the time.
     
  7. ChIcKeN_DiNnErS

    ChIcKeN_DiNnErS Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 1, 2011
    Thanks, I'm trying my best to take good care of them. This weekend we are going to start building the tractor coop![​IMG] I'm SO excited to get this project rolling, we went to the town dump and picked up a really nice window for the coop. Will be going back again soon to find some more nice things to add to the project. Will take pictures of it as we build and post pics as soon as I can. The chicks will be so happy to get out of the crate and explore more than their crate and a few feet of carpet in the dining room lol.[​IMG]
     
  8. Backyard Barb

    Backyard Barb Out Of The Brooder

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    My girls do this too and it freaked me out. It sort of reminded me of meconium only super stinky. I think its a cecal poop. Chicken health is really hard to understand in this way. Other critter you can get a fair idea of what is going on inside by what comes out. With chickens there is so much variation in "normal" its hard to get any info from poops unless there is blood. Then you have a problem.
     

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