How much sleeping is too much sleeping?


5 Years
Apr 16, 2014
DFW Texas
I have day old cochin chicks right now, my first chicks ever, so I am very unfamiliar with chick behavior! They seem to function like most small babies. They eat, drink, run around for a bit, and almost in unison get tired and take a nap where they are. Then it's right back up, rinse and repeat!

One baby seems to be sleeping a bit more. She is my favorite. I see her eat and drink just as regularly, and she has partaken in grit and a few bites of UltraKibble. She has a clean vent, clear eyes and nostrils. I've seen them defecate normally multiple times. When held or awake, she seems perfectly alert, and no alarmed peeping comes out of her! Just gentle happy chick noises at most. But they do seem to be sleeping more. She also seems to sleep away from the other chicks, though I have seen her get a bit bullied by one (for some reason one of these little brats thinks it's fun to peck EYES) and when she's awake she's usually with somebody. I have not seen any panting or heard popping or wheezing breath. The most I've seen are some gulpy looking yawns when they wake up, but she's not the only one, and my conure did the same thing waking up from naps so I figure that's normal?

Set up: The brooder is a mesh screen sewn around PVC pipes and hardware cloth top, plastic tray bottom to hold substrate. The heat lamp has a 120 watt red light and is on a dimmer for temperature control. I am monitoring both ambient air temps with a digital thermometer and surface temps with a heat gun as well as paying attention to the chicks. They are happy to roam the entire brooder. Substrate is pine shavings on top of puppy pads for ease of changing and extra moisture control. Airflow is very good, considering the whole thing is mesh. The starter feed is medicated, I gave electrolytes on arrival and they have probiotics now.

Am I just worrying too much about what is essentially a newborn baby wanting some extra shuteye after a long trip, or is there cause for concern when the other 3 seem to be operating as chickens in some (almost creepy) natural choreography while she lags 10 minutes behind or moves 10 minutes ahead? I'm probably worrying too much. They arrived at noon today, it is now 1 am and I admittedly haven't been more than 3 ft away from them for more than 5 minutes. I just want them to be well!

Mountain Peeps

Jesus is my life
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Apr 23, 2014
My Coop
My Coop
As long as she acts fine when awake, there is nothing wrong with her. Chicks all sleep on their own time. (Yes, some lots more than others.) She may be going through a growth spurt and is in need of extra shut eye. As for her sleeping away from the others; she may be on the independent side, especially if they are bullying her!

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