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baby chicks dying

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by joetzu, Apr 27, 2011.

  1. joetzu

    joetzu Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 2, 2009
    Dear Forum, Seventeen days ago we received 31 Cornish Roaster chicks from Murray McMurray. Nine are dead and two are in a separate brooder expected to die. Symptoms are very subtle and seem to simply be inactivity. Initially, chicks were not pooping much and McMurray suggested vegetable oil in the water, which seemed to work well. When one chick died in the first 48 hours, the vet suggested a chick booster from Tractor Supply for three days which we did. We also did the usual sugar in water the first 72 hours, not in combination with the chick booster. The chicks were brooded two weeks inside under a red light with clean equipment, frequent water changes and litter clean up. Temperature checked with thermometer. We gave oil in the water a few times when pooping seemed infrequent. Feeding organic chick starter, adding grit after three days and sprinkle in brewer's yeast for leg strength. All the same as last year's Murray McMurray group of 26, all of whom survived beautifully.
    Each morning we have a dead chick, not runts either but big healthy rooster chicks. I have a call into the vet and a few of my chicken-raising friends have been consulted and are baffled. The chicks were vaccinated against Marek and Coccidiosis, same as last year. They are given some greens and grass and there is no diarhhea problem. One pasty butt quickly solved. They have plenty of room in the outside coop, a red light, and shields against drafts from windows and doors. The problem is in identifying the sick ones. If it's a virus, I can't seem to remove the sick ones fast enough. Has anyone had a similar experience this spring? Thanks for your help.
  2. Knock Kneed Hen

    Knock Kneed Hen California Dream'in Chickens

    Feb 15, 2010
    So. Cal.
    The only thing that I can think of is that the temp is too high? Do you have plenty of room for the chicks to move away from the heat?

    Our local feed store ordered a variety of breeds from MM and they had customers returning the birds with deformities and complaining of losing a lot.
    The owner of the store took 5 returned, deformed chicks along with the feed they were eating to UCDavis where the birds were examined alive, culled
    and necropsied. The feed was also tested. The birds were found to have Ricketts and the feed missing vitamin B something...I don't remember exactly
    now. The feed company was contacted and admitted that human error could have caused a bad batch.

    Sorry I couldn't help more.
  3. joetzu

    joetzu Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 2, 2009
    Thank you for the input. We are beginning to suspect we just received a bad batch of birds. Just hoping the slowly moving what-ever-it-is doesn't hang around and kill the next flock.

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