Chicks dying en masse, no symptoms!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by PrairieChickens, Jan 4, 2016.

  1. PrairieChickens

    PrairieChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Alright, so let me start off by saying, this isn't my first time around the block with chickens. I've hatched out and raised hundreds over the past few years, and aside from a case of failure to thrive here or there, or some other obvious malady like a birth defect, I've had tremendous success with them. Recently, though, I'm losing more chicks than I'm able to raise to adulthood, and the worst part is, there's no symptoms or warning. They have clean water, food, warmth, and a dry, clean brooder, but every morning I wake up to more dead chicks.

    There's no discharge from their eyes or nostrils, no paralysis or bloody stools... I can see no outward sign of illness before the chicks suddenly become lethargic and die. It also only seems to affect the smallest babies--once the chicks have most of their feathers, they are apparently no longer susceptible to whatever is killing them.

    Any ideas!?
     
  2. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Could it be something genetic? Do source your chicks from some place, or are they bred from your flock? Line breeding too closely can cause failure to thrive issues.
     
  3. PrairieChickens

    PrairieChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We can rule that out--both my shipped chicks and my home-grown hatches have been susceptible.
     
  4. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    Are they under a heat lamp? If so, make sure it's not teflon coated.

    -Kathy
     
  5. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    Can you post a picture of your brooder with the chicks in it?

    -Kathy
     
  6. PrairieChickens

    PrairieChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]

    no teflon... It's the same kind of bulb I've always used.
     
  7. Trefoil

    Trefoil Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would check the bulb to make sure its not "shatterproof i.e. teflon coated. Also check to make sure that they are warm enough. It may help to separate them into smaller groups. I always put 2 tablespoons of ACV in my chicks water. I don't know if it helps or not because I've not had problems with chicks yet. I do know that by separating the smallest chicks out, they tend to catch up quicker. Last I would try another brand of starter.
     
  8. PrairieChickens

    PrairieChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would love to separate them but I can't right now. I do have ACV in the water, and I will double check the lamp when I have a chance. (I know the package is around here somewhere)
     
  9. BeachMomma

    BeachMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    From the picture it looks like all of them are trying to stay under the heat lamp. Could it be possible that the smaller ones are getting suffocated by the bigger ones?
     
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  10. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    X2. And I also see a couple that look sick.

    -Kathy
     

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