Chick just died!


In the Brooder
Jun 1, 2017
I am very upset that one of my chicks just died and was wandering if anyone new why? My younger sister found my little 3 month old buff in the nesting box dead with no outer injuries but upon further inspection i found out that there was blood all down her throat. She had not be acting strange and had not been acting sick. My only guess is that she swallowed something bad and i was wandering if getting into the hens food would cause that.


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Project Manager
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Jul 31, 2015
Houston, TX
My Coop
My Coop
Welcome to BYC.
Sorry for your loss. :hugs

Blood on the neck sounds like something bit her/killed her.
Could a predator have snuck in when you weren't looking?
Do you have a picture of your coop you can post?


Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Apr 3, 2011
southern Ohio
So the blood was on the outside of her neck or inside her throat? Was she low in the pcecking order? Do you have older birds together with her?


7 Years
Jul 24, 2013
First, I'm sorry for your loss. :hugs

I'm a little confused about your description. Was there blood on the outside of the chick's neck, or inside in its throat? If the blood was on the outside, it may have been attacked by the other birds or other animals. If the blood was in its mouth/throat, that may have been due to normal death proceedings, or due to something that it swallowed.

Unfortunately, sudden deaths are not rare in chickens and often the cause is never determined. Your chick could have had a heart attack or an internal, genetic deformity that led to its death. Without a necropsy or more distinct symptoms, we may never know what killed it.

The hens' food (presumably layer feed) would not, in my opinion, cause a sudden death like this. Layer feed is mostly a problem due to its higher calcium levels, which can be hard on a young, non-laying bird's body. However, if high calcium was the problem, I would have expected the dead chick to have showed increasingly severe symptoms, not simply have turned up dead with blood on its throat.

For now, I would watch your other birds for other symptoms and continue to provide them with fresh water, quality feed, and a safe environment. Hopefully this death was just a fluke.


In the Brooder
Jun 1, 2017
Thank you for all of your feedback. And she was lower on the pecking order but she still followed the other chicks around, and the blood i found was inside her throat and down her mouth. I searched over her body for wounds but there was absolutely nothing her eyes where not peck her feathers where pulled out she looked like my little buff. And the older hens would occasionally peck at the chicks but nothing out of ordinary.


Chicken Atlas Farm NPIP 74-4231
5 Years
Dec 5, 2014
I have never found a good explanation why chicks die, unless it is a genetic abnormality, if they were healthy to begin with. Kind of like SIDS, some fail to thrive. I had a cute little fuzz ball just hatched, who let out a loud cheep and then proceeded to push out all its internal organs. It freaked out my daughter quite a bit.

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