Lost A Couple Chicks

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by hillbilly123, Mar 7, 2012.

  1. hillbilly123

    hillbilly123 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 6, 2012
    Hi Folks,

    I just got 25 SS chicks on Sunday from a local breeder, they are now about 6 days old. Everything was fine with all of them until this morning, when I woke to find that we had lost 2 of them. One of them had no visible signs, however one had a long pink thing coming from its hind end, what I can only say looks like intestine. I also see that there are some signs of diarrhea around the brooder, not allot but a couple of spots.

    I am keeping fresh water to them 3-4x per day, and keeping them plenty of chick starter. I bought the regular chick starter from TSC. The temp in the brooder seems fine, the chicks seem happy and are running and playing. Other than looking at them this is really all we are doing.

    I am absolutely new to raising chickens and have no clue if this is just a fluke, if I am doing something wrong, or if disease is making its way into my flock. Any idea's?
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2012
  2. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    The damaged one was likely picked to death by its brooder mates. In the frenzy, the second one was probably trampled to death. Do you have enough space for them?
     
  3. hillbilly123

    hillbilly123 Out Of The Brooder

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    I think so, the brooder is 3x6, it seems like they have plenty of room to me.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2012
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    A 3 x 6 is plenty big enough for that number until they are maybe 5 weeks old. That's not your problem.

    I have not had that happen to any of mine, so it is hard to speculate. It does sound like some of the other chicks may have pecked that one to death. It could be that something was wrong with it to weaken it. They can be sadistic brutes when they spot a weakness in another chick. Or if it died, they may have started pecking it after it was dead.

    It is possible there is some disease there, but it really does not sound like it. Is your brooder pretty dry? A wet brooder is a breeding ground for diseases.

    Did they have pasty butt? This is where the poop dries in their vent and blocks it. They die because they can't poop. Pasty butt is normally caused by stress, even the residual stress from shipping. It's usually not a problem after they are maybe a week old.

    Some chicks never learn to eat or drink, although you do everything right and they see the others eating and drinking and should learn from them. Dying at six days is about right if it was from thirst or starvation. The term for this is "failed to thrive".

    Did you hear a really sad peeping? This is not their normal peeping but a really sad sound where you know something is wrong type of thing. Once you hear it, it is hard to mistake it for anything else?

    Do you have the entire brooder pretty warm? If they are too hot, they can get aggressive. My brodoer is that size. I keep it in the coop and just keep one area warm and let the rest cool down to ambient, sometimes down into the 40's in certain times of the year. They find their own comfort zone.

    Are you using a white light for heat? A red light seems to have a calming effect.

    There are so many possible things that could cause something like this, all I can do is speculate. I suspect pasty butt or a failure to thrive, but I really don't know.
     
  5. hillbilly123

    hillbilly123 Out Of The Brooder

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    The brooder is warm at one end and cold at the other. I have a red heat lamp setup that is suspended from the ceiling at one end, and a light on at the other (cfl so its not providing heat). Directly underneath its around 95 degrees or so. The chicks seems like they are staying warm and all of them seem happy and healthy. They run around, scratch, peck at everything, each other, etc. Not a single one of them seemed weak, tired, or making any chirps that seemed like they were unhappy. With 25 chicks running around its hard to tell if a couple were not eating or drinking, but for the most part it certainly seemed like they were all doing well.

    I also did not see any signs of pasty butt, and this seemed to happen quickly.

    Thanks for the replies folks keep em coming I'd like to know if I should be concerned or not.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2012
  6. hillbilly123

    hillbilly123 Out Of The Brooder

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    Folks, so I do think my chicks are pecking each other to death. I had to separate one of them, they are picking at their vent. Why would they do this?
     

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