Just call me lil' chick murderer :(


12 Years
Oct 22, 2007
Wellsville, UT
I don't know what is going on! I'm so disheartened! I had two buff silkies hatch last week that totally beat the odds. I had all kinds of problems so i was ecstatic that the two hatched. Today at lunch I came home to the littlest buff silkie limp and laying there and acting like it was either choking or couldn't breathe. It was just gasping and has no life and was just limp. While I was holding it, it expired.
These chicks are the only chicks I've ever been able to hatch and live longer than a few hours. The other buff seems fine but now i'm terrified for it too!

Out of another 8 eggs to hatch, four hatched and two died......
Do I have a black chick killing thumb? Somedays I just feel like tossing in the towel and taking up another hobby that doesn't involve living things.

I've tried to do everything right this time and still there are deaths. Why can I keep every bird from the hatchery alive but not the birds I really want?
Thanks, I don't know how to help me either. I love chickens and ducks and don't want to quit, but this is heartbreaking and very disappointing to say the least.

I spend hours on here reading so that i have some inkling and a clue. I've owned chickens for almost three years now, you would think I could somehow figure it out by now.

I monitor heat, food intake, water intake, how much they are pooping. I don't handle them very much at all. I don't use shaving, only paper towels. They are inside and protected.

It just blows that chicks die!
Well, my theory is DONT GIVE THEM A CHANCE TO EVEN THINK ABOUT DYING!!! i just hatched out a chick with a messed up neck that couldn't walk a few days ago and I slept by the brooder for two days and made her a little sling. Nakia is doing very well and I am sleeping in a bed now. If you even want to have them survive, watch them like a hawk.
I know how you feel. I lost two yesterday from my recent hatch. It is very sad when they die, but know that you are doing all you can. Sometimes they are just weak. Are any of these the ones I sent you? How are they doing. I can't recall how long it has been. Hope you don't give up. You will be rewarded.

Out of the 8 that I put in the hatcher four stopped developing shortly after I put them in I believe. Probably day 19. Out of the last four one pipped internally and died, one hatched and died and TWO MADE IT
At lunch they were just getting dry. They look like either blue or black and one has a HUGE vaulted skull! He looks silly with the little knot on its head. So at least the lone buff chick won't be alone!

The babies are beautiful! Now if I can just get them to a couple weeks old that would be great! By the way, if you have an egg list, I would love to get on it!!!!
I had that happen one time. I was using wood shavings for bedding and I think the chick must have somehow inhaled a piece or swallowed it or something. What are you using for bedding??
I use newspapers with a few layers of paper towel over it. I've found that the paper towels aren't slick but the newspaper helps absorb spills and nasty poops. I'd read on here about shaving issues that people were having so i opted not to use them period until they were adults.
How closely related are your chickens and rooster? I had a hard time on my first set of buff ameraucanas. Could hardly get any chicks to hatch and the ones that did died on the third day.

It was inbreeding problems. Try getting a different rooster.

Sorry about your babies.

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