Mysterious death

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by KatlynM, Apr 15, 2017.

  1. KatlynM

    KatlynM New Egg

    9
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2017
    I had 13 chicks all between 1 and 2 weeks old. They have all been doing great running around eating and drinking good. They also get along great and don't pick at each other. I did have to rehouse two bullies a few days ago, but everyone else has done great. They were starting to attempt escaping the brooder last knight so I put a frame made with wood and hardware cloth over it, and when I got up there was a little chick away from all the others flat on his back dead. All of them were fine last night, and the remaining chicks are doing great now. What could have happened?
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    9,554
    2,490
    411
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    First of all, don't fall into the trap of thinking coincidence is cause. It's highly unlikely the new brooder cover had anything to do with this chick's death. There are so many other factors that could have contributed to this death, such as brooder temperature, quality of feed (mold?) water contamination, the chick's individual development issues, and brooder population for starters.

    Not knowing anything else about your chick or brooder set-up or general environment, we can only take wild guesses.

    Is this chick younger than the rest? Is it smaller, underdeveloped? How had it been behaving? Have you noticed any abnormal poop? Did the chick have poop pasted around its vent? What is your heat source? Temp underneath? Temp in the rest of the brooder? What bedding are you using?

    As much info as you can supply can help us maybe take an educated guess instead of a wild one.
     
  3. KatlynM

    KatlynM New Egg

    9
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2017
    I haven't noticed any abnormal behavior or poop, and none of my chicks have pasty butt. I have them in a large brooder with roughly 1.5 square feet per bird. The chick had been eating and drinking good. The food was freshly opened that day and I have not found any mold. I change the water whenever it gets dirty about 5-6 times a day. None of my chicks picked on each other and the one that passed was right in the middle size wise. The only other thing I have noticed different with them today is they are trying to jump on each other to get a boost to try escaping the brooder. Maybe he was trampled?
     
  4. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    9,554
    2,490
    411
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Sounds as if the death will remain unsolvable. Sometimes an abnormality occurs in a chick that has no outward signs. As long as the rest of the chicks behave normally, it should be nothing to worry about.

    However, it sounds as if your chicks could use more space. It's spring, the daytime temps are warming up. You can take the tots out for day outings now. Or if the nights are also mild enough, you could go ahead and move them all into the coop with their heat source.
     
  5. KatlynM

    KatlynM New Egg

    9
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2017
    Where I live the temp during the day is still in the 60-70 degrees range. I can put them in the run with a heat lamp though. At what age can they be without the heat lamp?
     
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    9,554
    2,490
    411
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    When there are no more spots on the chicks with down and they have feathers all over they should be insulated against losing body heat.

    You still need to acclimate them to cooler temps, and you should be doing that by exposing them to the outdoors during the day for short periods starting around two weeks. By age three weeks, they no longer need heat during the day, and by age five weeks, they should no longer need any at night.
     
  7. Stephine

    Stephine Chillin' With My Peeps

    534
    103
    138
    May 30, 2016
    Sonoma
    Could it be too hot in your brooder? What's the temperature? And is there a space that is not heated by your lamp for them to cool off?
     
  8. KatlynM

    KatlynM New Egg

    9
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2017
    Thanks for the tips azygous [​IMG], and stephine I don't have a thermometer in the brooder. They seem to be happy with the temp. They spread out all around and will go under the light to sleep some and they can go away from it to cool off.
     
  9. rrockey2002

    rrockey2002 New Egg

    1
    0
    3
    May 2, 2017
    Go to http://www.susanclubb.com/pdfs/vvnd.doc and look at the EPIDEMIOLOGY AND CLINICAL SIGNS of VVND and see if this can somewhat be related to what has happened. Sorry for your loss. My chick died yesterday after 4 days and I think this is what happened to him...
     
  10. Stephine

    Stephine Chillin' With My Peeps

    534
    103
    138
    May 30, 2016
    Sonoma
    If you seriously have good reason to believe that it was this disease you need to send the chick in for necropsy- this is a reportable disease. It is also - thankfully! - rare and therefore highly unlikely to be the cause of a single chick dying.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by