first timer!

edelbach

Hatching
May 4, 2015
2
0
7
north dakota
This is my first year raising chickens. We went small and only ordered 30 chicks. 6 were layers (2 rhodes, 2 barreds and 2 austrolorps) and 24 were broilers. We initially recieved 7 layers (all of which seem to be doing very well) and 26 broilers. 2 of the broiler chicks were doa in the box and we have since lost 5. I understand that there is a normal amount of this that happens but am nervous that maybe im doing something wrong. They have a 4x8 brooding pen that stays a good 95* and have all been eating and drinking well. I layed down newspaper for the first 2 days and just yesterday pulled that out to reveal the layer of pine shavings. When they die they just seem to go out of the blue. They lay down and dont get back up. I guess mostly im just wondering if this is normal? Thanks for any help!
 

azygous

Enabler
11 Years
Dec 11, 2009
25,328
38,298
1,142
Colorado Rockies
When you say the pen "stays at 95", is that the entire pen, or just under the heat source?

Except for maybe the first day or two, 95 is going to be too warm. Especially if any of your chicks are black, since they would absorb more heat.

I've found that most chicks in their first week are more comfortable at 85 to 90. Perhaps your chicks were heat stressed.

Also, chicks need some relief from the heat. It should be twenty degrees cooler around the outside edges of the pen.
 
Last edited:

edelbach

Hatching
May 4, 2015
2
0
7
north dakota
Its 95* just a few inches outside the main light. As I said the pen is 4x8 so they should have plenty of room to dodge the heat if its too high. I havent seen any of them panting or anything like that either?
 

azygous

Enabler
11 Years
Dec 11, 2009
25,328
38,298
1,142
Colorado Rockies
There are many things that can kill a chick. Dehydration. Overheating. Constipation. Then there are diseases. Make sure there's no blood in the poops.

It will involve sitting for a while observing to make sure the remaining chicks are actually pooping and not straining without producing. That they are eating and drinking and nobody is standing around in one spot nodding off instead of being active. There ought to be some signs before a chick dies and if you can spot them, maybe you will be able to save it before you lose any more.
 

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