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I think my chickens died from hypothermia

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ploggans, Dec 7, 2008.

  1. ploggans

    ploggans Hatching

    Dec 7, 2008
    I had 3 roosters and 5 hens. They are about 5 months old and have seemed very healthy until friday night.
    Friday night, my son went out to check on them and found 2 of the hens dead and two more very lethargic. The roosters and the other hen were a little slow acting.
    We brought them in the house on the heated back porch. The two sick acting hens died, but the other 4 perked up.
    Their poop was runny and yellowish and they smelled terrible so we put them back out in the coop saturday morning.

    The coop is 4' x 6' by 6' high.
    It has a box like steeple on top with holes in it for ventilation.
    The coop walls are insulated and have wall board over the insulation. It is not drafty.
    We have a 250W red light hanging a few inches from the ceiling. It's cold here ~10 F. and about 22 F in the coop.

    The combs on the roosters are dark now.
    We bought some Aureomycin chlortetra-cycline HCl soluble powder and have been giving it to them in their water.
    I was going to buy a heater tomorrow for the coop, but there are MANY postings on this site that say they don't need heat.
    Are they freezing to death or are they sick?

  2. Attack Chicken

    Attack Chicken [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG] Hu

    Sep 25, 2008
    Indianapolis, IN
    runny yellow poop might be worms. Have you wormed them at all?
  3. wohneli

    wohneli Songster

    Oct 6, 2008
    a little corn scratch before bed is supposed to increase their internal temp - could help
  4. ploggans

    ploggans Hatching

    Dec 7, 2008
    Thanks for the replies.
    I haven't wormed them. In fact, they have not had any medical care at all.
    They have never been around any other aniamals since before they hatched.
    We do give them cracked corn.
  5. Teresaann24

    Teresaann24 Songster

    Jul 29, 2008
    Eastern, Kentucky
    It could be they have worms and need a worming. Do you provide them with some grit to help grind up the cracked corn?
  6. A.J.'s

    A.J.'s Songster

    Nov 11, 2008
    where are you? and how cold did it get there..?
    Ive been puzzled at the terms "draft free" and "ventilation" seems the two just dont work in the same house to me.
    I cant imagine that they froze.. but dying of worms together at the same time.. nawwwwww
    how old were they? feathered out totally? Id say the combs of the survivors is a real clue... just how cold did it get there???
  7. ploggans

    ploggans Hatching

    Dec 7, 2008
    Hi AJ

    I'm near Buffalo, NY but out in the country where its a little colder.
    Here are the temps for my town for the past week.
    Dec 1 Low-30 High-37
    Dec 2 Low-21 High-30
    Dec 3 Low-19 High-39
    Dec 4 Low-22 High-40
    Dec 5 Low-14 High-23 - this is the night 4 of them died
    Dec 6 Low-12 High-23
    Dec 7 Low-2 High-25
    Dec 8 Current 15?F

    The coop is not drafty thru the walls or around the floor.
    In the ceiling, there is an opening into a box with about 10 1.5 inch holes in it. This was put there for ventilation.

    They're about 6 months old and have lots of feathers - they look like adults.

  8. pips&peeps

    pips&peeps There is no "I" in Ameraucana

    Jan 18, 2008
    Newman Lake, WA
    Five month old birds are old enough to keep themselves warm. And if there was a heat lamp and a house they are sick.
  9. Mrs MIA

    Mrs MIA Chick Magnet

    Mar 3, 2008
    Ditto... I don't think it was the cold that did it, but giving them some heat until they recover will help. They're sick, but I honestly couldn't tell you with what.
  10. derby

    derby Songster

    Apr 18, 2008
    Boonsboro, MD
    The temps here have been about the same. My coop is unheated and my hens are itching to get outside in the morning. Did you mention what kind of birds you have? Perhaps your breed is more cold sensitive.


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