Chicks losing feathers around the neck

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Themehmeh, Mar 9, 2014.

  1. Themehmeh

    Themehmeh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 12, 2012
    Texas
    Issue-
    Three of my week old chicks are losing feathers around their necks and faces.


    Some of them still have some pasty butt problems, they came with pasty butt from the hatchery and were cleaned off by me after a few days when the pasty bottoms didn't resolve themselves

    One of them had a bald spot near her vent, there was poop all around it so I presumed it was feather loss from the poop- some of their down came off with the poop as I cleaned them (gently)

    Now I have three birds with feathers missing on their neck and faces. They can peck at their own neck, but not their faces.
    The down around the area looks moistened and is a little bunched like a wet chick gets. They are capable of getting their faces in their water and I saw these chicks in the water often the day I noticed the issue first so I presumed it was that. After they dried off the area around the missing feathers remained sort of crusty looking.

    • The skin underneath is undamaged, no rashes or wounds
    • I checked them and some of the unaffected birds very closely and saw no signs of mites or lice.
    • When I was cleaning their pasty bottoms, I saw no sign of lice or mites.
    • The birds affected were marked as low in the pecking order so it might just be aggression?



    Flock Ailments
    • original flock was numbered at 25
    • two were dead on arrival, no apparent cause of death, they had been dead a while and the shipment took less than 24 hours so presumably they were not going to make it anyway
    • One was very weak on arrival, no physical deformities, gave him water with a syringe (drops on the tip of the beak, not forced) he was doing better, but I had to go to work and he didn't make it.
    • One was born blind Tried to teach it how to eat and drink, she couldn't figure out how to eat and died on day 3. One eye was a little goopy when we got her but the other was just foggy and blind. The goop cleared up on day 1.
    • One had a limp, this resolved in a few days, presumably a sprain during transportation



    Living Conditions

    • Wood shavings with newspaper on top
    • Born 3/1, Recieved 3/2
    • Shipped through a location with very cold weather, in the negative digits.
    • Bedding changed every day or every other day depending on soil level.
    • Living in an extra large rubbermaid container
    • two heat lamps on one side temps are 93-88f and hangs around 90f
    • food and water away from heat source
    • food and water replaced daily
    • fed medicated chick starter and watered with a half dose of Sav-A-Chic electrolytes for the first 5 days.(stopped after the issue arose)
    • Vaccinated for Mareks and Coccidiosis
    • Lights were turned on during daylight hours but I've stopped doing that as of today

    Thanks for reading, I've looked it up and read that it's either bugs or pecking but I wanted to make sure there aren't any less likely illnesses that I might have missed due to poor google skills.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2014
  2. TOP KNOT

    TOP KNOT Chillin' With My Peeps

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    SHERIDAN IL
    It may be too hot for them. Chicks need a place away from the heat lamp to cool off if they want. I learned of this reading this winter. I have a large brooder I only put one 250 watt lamp for 59 chicks. The other half of the brooder has no lamp (that half is 28''x48'') This batch of chicks I had only 2 chicks that got pasty butt and I removed it twice. They never got it again. The chicks run back and forth across the empty end like they are on a race track. Its really funny! Try getting a bigger box and leaving half of it without heat so they can retreat from it.
     
  3. Themehmeh

    Themehmeh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 12, 2012
    Texas
    Nevermind... The feathers aren't lost! They're low density in that area and they're white feathers so the chick got wet when the water was dirty and her feathers got crusty and stuck to her neck. I'll just have to bathe her. I change the water twice daily now because it gets dirty fast.
     
  4. TOP KNOT

    TOP KNOT Chillin' With My Peeps

    703
    55
    138
    Mar 10, 2013
    SHERIDAN IL
    As my chicks grow I put pieces of 1x6 under the water to raise it up back level. I add boards as needed. Wow does this help keep out the shavings etc. !! I am glad she is ok!!
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2014
  5. Themehmeh

    Themehmeh Chillin' With My Peeps

    114
    6
    93
    Apr 12, 2012
    Texas
    Yeah, I am going to invest in some marbles or maybe multiple small waterers next time around because they love playing in the water and now they're all kind of scraggly looking.
     

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