Are these chicks slow or sick?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by mlheran, Mar 27, 2007.

  1. mlheran

    mlheran Songster

    As of today I have six three-week chicks and four one-week chicks. The three-weeks are all healthy, doing normal chick stuff, and feathering out nicely (in their akward teen stage). I bought the one-weeks last Friday; the two Americauna are doing great and have nearly doubled in size, but the Delaware and Buff Brahama are still very small and tend to stand around with their eyes closed a lot.

    I've seen them eating the starter (and even some hard-boiled egg) and drinking water -though not as voraciously or as often as the others- and they have no problems with their vents, nor any other abnormalities that I notice. But then, this is my first time with chickens so I may not know what to look for!

    This morning I noticed that some of the others were picking on them a little -not enough to make them peep, but picking at their beaks while they were sleeping. I'm worried about them now and am considering taking them out. Should I? Would a fish tank be okay for them? I can't get another heat lamp, so what can I use to keep the temp up? Should I give them some sugared water -or some other kind of supplement? If I don't take them out is there something I can give them that won't hurt the others?

    Any thoughts/help is greatly appreciated!

    Also, the Delaware and the Buff Brahama were in the same brooder at the feed store -the Americaunas were in another. But all the chicks were very active and healthy-looking -I even picked them myself.
  2. Marion

    Marion Songster

    Feb 21, 2007
    Wilmington, NC
    A 10 gallon fish tank was what I used when my daughter rescued 3 bantam chicks when their mother was killed by a predator. I had a wire top on it with a regular 60 light bulb for warmth, covering the wire with a towel kept the heat in and if they got too warm all I did was uncover more of the top. They did just fine for a few weeks but had to be cleaned up after often. I don't know about the others picking on them or how those particular breeds are in comparison to others but if you want to move them for a short time the fish tank can work.[​IMG]
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2007
  3. mlheran

    mlheran Songster

    Thanks for the info. I think I was just a little overprotective/paranoid because I watched them all day and it seems like the chickens have "shifts" -some nap, some eat, some flit around, and then they rotate. I must have been catching these chicks at the wrong time before because they seem just fine now. Though it looks like they're on the bottom of the pecking order for the time being, so that may be why they're smaller and/or waiting to do everything last.

    I think I'll get a tank from the thrift store anyway, just to have on hand for isolation and observation. [​IMG]
  4. MTchick

    MTchick Songster

    Feb 2, 2007
    Western Montana
    I had a few chicks that were younger then the rest, and it looked to me like the bigger chicks were dominating the feeder. Naturally, I got concerned the little chicks were not eating enough. So I set up a second feeder and that completely removed all competition for food- the big chicks prefer one feeder, and the little chicks usually use the other one. I only have a total of 8 chicks so it might seem like there could not have been competition in the first place, but I really think having two feeders has helped the little chicks eat without being bugged by their big sisters.

  5. mlheran

    mlheran Songster

    That's a good point, MTchick. I had had two feeders when I first put them all together, but switched to one bigger one a day later. Maybe that's why these two were looking a bit sluggish. Perhaps I'll put another small feeder in at the other end of the brooder. Good catch! [​IMG]

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