baby chicks that has ate acorns an are sick and dying

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by sandra c, Jun 3, 2012.

  1. sandra c

    sandra c Hatching

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    i have baby chicks that range from 5 weeks to 3 months i have them in what is called a chicken tractor or portable chicken pen i had them under a very old oak tree and i started to notice i would find 1 or 2 dead at a time this morning i come to find 10 dead and the others lookn sick upon further notice i see where they had been eating at the acorns. so if any one has any information on this matter or how i can save my sick chicks PLEASE! HELP!
     
  2. Erica

    Erica Songster

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    Hi sandra c,
    I know very little about acorns, so I'm sorry to say I can't help much about that. I did read one reference here saying 3-7% acorns in the diet can be deadly to chickens http://woodridge.wordpress.com/2010/10/07/acorns-toxic-feed-for-poultry/. However that's just one reference and it's not a science page.

    But my feeling is acorns (unless absolutely tiny) wouldn't be an easy thing for young chickens to swallow. Are you sure they've eaten a number of them? Even if they had, I can't easily imagine the acorns killing so quickly. I could be wrong, and as I said I have no experience with acorns, that's just my general feeling (chickens are usually good at avoiding foods that disagree with them).

    By far the most deadly and yet common illness at the ages you're speaking of would be coccidiosis. However you would probably have seen signs like hunching, ruffled feathers, pale faces, heads held close to breast, drooping wings and possibly blood in the droppings. Any or all of these symptoms can happen over time but it's worth noting that cocci can kill within 24 hours of first symptoms. Tractors don't guarantee safety from cocci.

    Whatever the case, it's almost certainly time to move the tractor, perhaps try dosing with Sulmet or Corid (if you haven't already) just in case it's coccidiosis.

    Sorry I can't help further, and ignore all this if someone wiser about acorns answers...

    Best of luck, I hope you work this out,
    Erica
     
  3. sandra c

    sandra c Hatching

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    hi erica
    thank u for the response to my blog it was very helpful 2 me. i didnt explain the acorn situation 2 the fullest, the tree they were under is very old and the acorns were open so it was the yellow meat of the acorn they had been pecking at. as of today none has died. what i done yesterday was put apple cider vinegar in the water cooked white rice and scrambled eggs.mixed that together and feed that to them. so far we good! i will however look into the sulmet or corid and again thank u so much for the response.






    your chicken friend,
    Sandra c
     
  4. cmfarm

    cmfarm Songster

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    Humans can eat acorns so I would think it would be safe for chickens.
     
  5. janinepeters

    janinepeters Songster

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    Humans get sick from eating acorns unless they leach out the tannins first. However, many, many species of birds and mammals safely eat acorns with no problem. However, your birds are not mature, and therefore may not be able to metabolize acorns as well as adults. Especially if they are eating a lot of them. Still, I agree with Erica in that I would look for symptoms of common problems that afflict chicks. To be on the safe side, I would put their pen where there are few or no acorns.
     
  6. Reurra

    Reurra Crowing

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    Wild birds are attracted to trees that bear fruit. Wild birds poop on the ground under the tree. Perhaps your birds picked up something more serious?
     

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