Found three dead pullets when I went out to feed this morning.

Oblio13

Songster
12 Years
Jan 26, 2008
1,340
29
214
New Hampshire
They were nine weeks old and fully feathered. All three dead ones were crowded into the same nesting box.

I let them outside for the first time yesterday afternoon. They seemed very happy scratching and dusting in the sun. I put them back in for the night.

I think they must have gotten fatally chilled. I must have underestimated how vulnerable they still are.

The really bad news is that all three were Black Copper Marans pullets from Bev. The cockerels were fine, the mongrels I hatched at the same time for a neighbor were all fine. I only lost the best.

Bev sent me fifteen eggs. I dropped one. Eleven of the remaining fourteen hatched. One chick died. Now this, and I'm down to seven, at least three of which are cockerels.

Don't count your chickens until they're hatched, feathered, grown and laying.

I'm kicking myself.
 
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fowltemptress

Frugal Fan Club President
12 Years
Jan 20, 2008
1,796
42
209
Oh, I'm so sorry.
It's always the "quality" that's hit hardest, isn't it? I hope the other four do wind up being hens.
 

Oblio13

Songster
12 Years
Jan 26, 2008
1,340
29
214
New Hampshire
Turned it off just recently because the weather had warmed up and they had all their feathers. Like I said, I'm kicking myself.
 
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lurky

Songster
12 Years
Jun 4, 2007
4,811
8
231
Western MA
Quote:Thats too bad......I wish you could go back too. I hate to learn things the hard way, so i always play things safe. Your in NH and its always colder there so i guess you will need to keep it on til it gets warmer. Sorry for your loss
 

Oblio13

Songster
12 Years
Jan 26, 2008
1,340
29
214
New Hampshire
Something else just occurred to me: I had been cutting pressure-treated lumber in the driveway. Maybe they ingested some toxic sawdust? Just speculating.
 

lurky

Songster
12 Years
Jun 4, 2007
4,811
8
231
Western MA
We got snow last night and it was in the low 20's down here in mass.......so it was probably from the cold as it is colder up there.
I think its going to be cold at night for a while still......plus they are not used to it. I also think just because they have feathers does not mean they will be warm. They are still just babies. A full grown bird puts off more body heat. I think you should keep the lamp on at night for a while......maybe another month. I keep a thermometer in my coop too so i know what the temps are too. The tough thing about northern new england
it that it can have a high day temp of 60 but be 20 at night.
 
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thechickenchick

Born city, Living country
11 Years
Mar 8, 2008
9,468
18
271
Eaton, Colorado
My husband will have the coop done this weekend. We were planning to put them in it asap. They are 5 weeks old. We will have a heat lamp. My concern is it got down to 20 night before last and has been in the mid 40s during the day. Its only 26 right now. The coop is brand new. My husband built it very sound, with insulated walls and a regular(used) house door. There shouldnt be any drafts. We have 12 chickens and the coop is 8 by 8. What do you think. Maybe 2 heat lamps or is it just to soon and/or cold?
 

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