Chicks Suddenly Dead

torch21

Chirping
Aug 2, 2020
20
26
59
Hello all. One of my cochin bantams became broody so we allowed her to hatch out a few eggs fertilized by our silkie rooster. She hatched three and they have been doing quite well with her out in the coop. Most days we shut the mama up in the coop with the little ones with their own food and water while the other 3 hens hang out in the run. The chicks were around 2.5 weeks old but doing very well. Eating drinking pooping just fine, spending most of their time warm under mama.

We checked around 2:00 pm today and they were fine. We went out again around 6:00 and apparently, the door to the coop wasn't shut all the way and all three chicks were found dead around the base of the ramp. I can't find any physical symptoms to explain their deaths. No pasty butt, no broken bones that I can feel, no injuries or punctures I could find. The weather was around 75 degrees with rain off and on for most of the afternoon. Two of the chicks bodies were still kind of warm, the third and smallest chick was cold but not stiff.

Does anyone have predictions for what may have happened? I feel like it must be due to the other chickens or the cold. I can't think of any other explanations. Perhaps they came down the ramp and were trampled by the hens? Perhaps they couldn't get back up and mama didn't come down to sit on them and they got too cold?

We have been spoiled as we recently let a mama quail hatch out 9 babies and they're all around 2 months old now and thriving. We're so bummed out, they were going to be gorgeous little birds.
 

torch21

Chirping
Aug 2, 2020
20
26
59
I don't think 75F would kill a 2.5 week old chick that fast. Sometimes I subject chicks that age to those temps.
With the loss of 3 chicks in short order I would get a necropsy at my state poultry lab.
What state are you in?
An illness wouldn't have killed them so quickly in succession to one another and I can't afford a necropsy right now. in my area they run upwards of $100. But thank you for your comment
 

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