We are really sad. We have just lost our 6th chicken! These are our BABIES!!! We planned for them, we studied up on how to raise them and we are so diligent in doing everything RIGHT! It is really heartbreaking! We got our 12 chickens from a breeder in Tacoma who specializes in Heritage birds (endangered species). We really wanted to help keep the Heritage birds living. We got a mixture of Light Sussex, Java, Dorking and Delaware. Two of the babies had genetic defects from the beginning that we couldn't do anything about. One of them died from a condition at 3 weeks old that I was ignorant about (pasty butt) - so I chalk that one up to just not knowing what to look for. One of them was dead after a horrible, fierce, thunder and lightening storm that shook us all to the bones. Very frightening!!! We read on your forum that chickens can actually die of fright during storms like that. The other two are absolute mysteries. Perfectly healthy, happy chickens who just died for no reason that we can see. We feed them 100% organic and pamper them like you won't believe! They are very well protected from predators, yet we do allow them to "pasture" every day so we know we are taking a chance that something could happen to them on their daily adventures on our property. We feed them treats very carefully from a list we got off of a forum here - making sure we aren't giving them things that chickens shouldn't eat. I am wondering if the 2 mysteries and the 2 genetic conditions are part of the "Heritage bird" issue - perhaps these birds aren't quite as "hardy" as your everyday typical chicken. Maybe they are more fragile. I just don't know. I honestly can't see that we're doing anything wrong but would REALLY like some advice.