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Newbie with a question

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by jaygunther, Dec 18, 2015.

  1. jaygunther

    jaygunther New Egg

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    I recently got into chickens on our small farm. I bought 4 silkies, just for pets, 5 cochins, 9 lavendar ameracaunas, 4 black copper marans, 5 buff orpingtons, and 3 more ameracaunas from four different sources. All of them have done great except the lavendar ameracaunas bought from a single source. Within three weeks, 6 of the 9 of them have died. Should I be suspicious of the source where I bought them, or is it more likely that I'm just doing something wrong? Why only those ones, when the others all seem very healthy and happy?
     
  2. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How old are your chickens? Do they show any symptoms before they die? You may want to quarantine the other lavender (though it might be to late) until you figure out what is wrong.
     
  3. jaygunther

    jaygunther New Egg

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    Dec 18, 2015
    The lavenders are three weeks old. The first two may have had coccidia. We noticed blood in their feces but quickly treated it. Everything seemed fine after that. No more signs of anything. They seem to die without warning. Still, they all live together so why only the lavenders.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    They could have brought some disease in with them.....
    .....or the other birds have something that they are not immune to.
    Some birds are just weak, either genetically or because of exposure to disease

    What and how did you treat the cocci with?
    Where did you get the chicks?
    Did they all come from hatcheries and are they all the same age?
    All living in the same brooder with plenty of space?

    More info may help answer the questions.
     
  5. jaygunther

    jaygunther New Egg

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    I treated the birds with Sulment as prescribed. It's what the local feed store had. I gave them the full dose for two days and half dose for five days. I got all the chicks from local farms. A few here and a few there. They were all roughly the same ages, a few weeks apart at most. They all live in the same brooder that I built. I was pretty careful to make a nice place for them. It's plenty large, they have good food and water and I have heat lamps. All of the chicks are growing and thriving except the lavenders. Even the three that are still alive are not growing like the others. The three week old ones are smaller than the one week old ones I have.
     
  6. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Cocci can damage their intestines deterring their nutrition uptake, they may catch up later tho....or they may not.
    I doubt it's really anything to do with breed, but can be due to genetic lineage and/or husbandry of parent stock.

    I assume you got them as day olds?
    Have you informed the folks you got them from about the losses and asked if they have had any similar issues?
    Just communicating those two things might get you some remuneration and/or let you know if you want to do business with them in the future.

    Putting stock, even day olds, from multiple sources into one brooder/coop carries the risk of different strains of disease causing illness.
    It's really hard to say who infected whom.

    30 three week old chicks need a lot of room, make sure you are not overheating them and keep thing very clean and dry until they appear to have recovered.
    What is 'plenty large' in feet by feet?
    Pics of housing always help assess a situation.
     
  8. jaygunther

    jaygunther New Egg

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    I appreciate your help. The house is 8 feet by 8 feet, 6-7 feet high with the roof pitch. Plenty of ventilation. Dry. I have one heat lamp, a red 250-watt bulb. There's plenty of room for them to be directly in or away from the heat. Most of them seem perfectly happy and doing well. Only the lavenders are struggling.

    I'll post a pic when I can. I'm out now.

    They were day olds when I got them but I have not yet told the guy I bought them from about the problem. It's not about remuneration. I just want to know if I'm doing anything wrong. I am guilty of mixing four different stocks/sources and what you say makes sense. I'll hold off on any more until these ones mature more.

    I bought all straight run knowing that I would get roosters which I don't plan on keeping. Maybe one or two at the most. Also, I'm on ten acres of pasture with four very protective dogs so the plan is to free range during the days. I'm also going to build another much larger hen house for the future, assuming that I get this figured out.

    Yeah, I'm brand new at this so I hope I'm not making a fool of myself and doing something seriously wrong. I appreciate the comments.
     
  9. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    Welcome! Your coop sounds fine, but getting chicks from multiple sources, especially farm sources, is asking for problems. I hope the survivors will all be good. You could have had a fecal tested at the vet's for coccidia, and if more die, have a PM done. If it's coccidia, plan on medicated chick starter for birds in the future. Other issues might be more of a problem, so hopefully that was it. I would talk to the seller about your losses, but perhaps not get more from that source. I am VERY careful about biosecurity, and only get chicks from selected sources, never older birds from anywhere. Sounds like you have a nice group! Mary
     
  10. jaygunther

    jaygunther New Egg

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    Thank you for your help. As promised, here are some pics of my hen house. This is my first time at doing anything remotely like this, as I have been pretty much a city boy all my life. Anyway, here goes . . .[​IMG]
    These are the lavendars with one of my dogs who loves them.
    [​IMG]
    This is the only pic I have of the house. It's not quite finished yet.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    A couple of the black cochins on the perches.
    [​IMG]
     

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