Newbie with chicks...just lost one, what should I check?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by GratefulNewbie, Mar 25, 2019.

  1. GratefulNewbie

    GratefulNewbie Hatching

    4
    1
    6
    Mar 25, 2019
    Hello,
    I am brand new to BYC but have lurked and scoured for awhile planning our coop. So grateful for all the help thus far and hope for more help as I begin my first chicken adventure.
    Brought eight babies home last Thursday. The smallest runt died overnight due to cold, it was pushed out from under the heating plate. Realizing the workshop was too cold, we've moved them into our large bathroom and are keeping the room fairly warm (about 80-85) plus the heating plate is still there.
    Everything was fine until just now, and I've lost another one, found her under the heating plate.
    Every chick has been seen eating and drinking, and happily moving in and out of heating plate.
    No one has pasty butt and all the poop looks normal to me.
    I know it just sometimes happens, but for my peace of mind as a beginner, what should I check or be doing, or looking for at this point?
    Thanks!
     
  2. TheFirstLadiesChickens

    TheFirstLadiesChickens In the Brooder

    34
    30
    36
    Mar 23, 2019
    Eastern Missouri
    I recently raised 13 hens from chicks. This was my first time raising chickens so my advice may not be the best!:) Sorry! I still have all 13 hens and they are 10-month-olds so I guess I did something right.

    Do you have a picture of the heating plate? Your brooder should probably be a little warmer, maybe 90/95 degrees would be better. If the heating plate isn't big enough to cover every chick, maybe try a heating lamp. That is what I used. It can be a fire hazard so make sure it is secured if you end up using one. Fingers crossed!
     
  3. Shezadandy

    Shezadandy Songster

    1,137
    673
    236
    Sep 26, 2015
    Portland OR
    What are they eating? The first thing that poops (pops, lol) into my mind is coccidiosis which can hit the littles especially hard and fast... A vet could easily do a fecal for you to see if it is present, they do the same tests on kittens and puppies.

    How big is your heat plate? Can all of them get in and out easily when they're huddled under there? (what I'm getting at is did she get stuck under there and overheat because she couldn't get around her flockmates)
     
  4. GratefulNewbie

    GratefulNewbie Hatching

    4
    1
    6
    Mar 25, 2019
    Thanks for the replies. The heating plate is 10X10 and they were all easily getting in and out when needed, so I don't think she couldn't get out. I hope it is just a temperature issue that I can easily learn from and fix. My first thought is since my chicks are different ages, 1 to 3 weeks old, I think in trying to adjust the height of the plate for the oldest, the smallest may not have been close enough to touch the heating plate?
    They are eating starter food and starter grit is available. I have tossed in a few sprinkles of dehydrated herbs to give them something to peck at.
    Everyone's poops continue to look healthy, would they still possibly have Coccidiosis if everything looks normal? Should I treat just in case or only if there are symptoms?
    I really appreciate your responses as I learn to care for my latest additions.
     
  5. GratefulNewbie

    GratefulNewbie Hatching

    4
    1
    6
    Mar 25, 2019
    Meant to add that I have a total of 6 chicks now and the feed is Healthy Harvest StarterGrower feed. Thanks!
     
    Shezadandy likes this.
  6. Shezadandy

    Shezadandy Songster

    1,137
    673
    236
    Sep 26, 2015
    Portland OR
    Edited to add: The smaller the chick, the greater possibility that you'll see little or no sign before they die if it is coccidiosis.

    If it's "unmedicated", you can add Corid to their sole supply of water for the prescribed number of days. Corid is what's in the "medicated" chick feed- also known as "Amprolium"- which, if present, will be on the feed bag ingredient list. Corid/Amprolium protects them from coccidiosis while they build up their immune system. Corid comes in powder and liquid forms and will not hurt them - so it's a good "cover your bases" move since you've lost a chick. Cheap insurance and it is NOT antibiotics. Again, if you're feeding "medicated"- this ingredient is already in the food.

    Here's an excellent rundown on the topic along with the doses etc.:

    https://the-chicken-chick.com/coccidiosis-what-backyard-chicken/
     
  7. GratefulNewbie

    GratefulNewbie Hatching

    4
    1
    6
    Mar 25, 2019
    Thank you so much for the link, I have scoured that website, but missed this post! I purchased a small bag of non-medicated food as I didn't know which route to go and will need more food soon. Should I just start medicated food today, and have the Corid on hand, if needed, or start Corid today? Still no other symptoms at this point. Really appreciate your help.
     
  8. Shezadandy

    Shezadandy Songster

    1,137
    673
    236
    Sep 26, 2015
    Portland OR
    Corid is always good to have on hand, so picking up some to have on hand can't hurt.

    As for what to do:

    It depends on how much of the food you already have on hand. If it's enough to get you through the next 4 days, then I would give them the Corid in their water while you finish out that bag of food (no sense wasting good food!) - then switch to medicated after that.

    If you're down to a day or two of the other feed, then just switch to medicated immediately.

    Once they're on medicated, you wouldn't need to do the 2nd course of Corid because the food would handle that for you. The 2nd course would be if you have a mixed flock (hens, roosters, chicks) and feed them all one food (I feed Flock Raiser to everyone because I always have broodies with babies, roosters, layers and older girls living out their lives). But because you've got all chicks, feeding medicated while they grow up will take care of that.

    So - summarizing: If you have enough of the old food for 4+ days, do the Corid in the water, then switch to the medicated feed (no more Corid after switching)

    If you're out of the old feed, just switch to the medicated (no Corid, it's in the food) immediately.
     
  9. Shamo Hybrid

    Shamo Hybrid Songster

    1,565
    1,684
    186
    Jun 6, 2018
    You guys are always soo quick to jump on the Coccidiosis wagon....... it could just be a sickly little runt that suffered from early chick mortality or whatever they call it.
     
  10. Shamo Hybrid

    Shamo Hybrid Songster

    1,565
    1,684
    186
    Jun 6, 2018
    *edit* double trouble
     
  11. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    That's because it's a common killer of chicks. No harm whatsoever in treating with Corid.
    Treatment20% Powder9.6% Liquid
    For 3-5 days1.5 teaspoons per gallon2 teaspoons per gallon
    then for 7-14 days1/3 teaspoon per gallon1/2 teaspoon per gallon
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: