Newbie with Four Dead Rhode Island Reds. Advice?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Pooma, Jan 20, 2015.

  1. Pooma

    Pooma New Egg

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    May 28, 2014
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    Looking for answers from chicken experts. I lost four Rhode Island chicks in the past 10 hours (when I last checked them). Each sustained injuries under the wings, back, and neck, and one underbelly, but none "eaten." I see no obvious evidence of an intruder. They were roughly a month old, sharing a 10'x10' pen with New Hamphires and Plymouth Rocks. All the same age and purchased together. Is this "unfriendly fire"? Are they killing each other? Advice or opinion?
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC. Sorry for your loss. A predator such as a dog or raccoon could be responsible. A fox probably would have taken the bodies, and hidden them. Do you keep them locked up at night?
     
  3. Pooma

    Pooma New Egg

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    Yes, they were in an enclosure within a larger enclosure, which is fairly secure against larger predators. And, outside this secure area, roams a large German Shepherd that typically discourages raccoons and whatnot. There is no evidence of an intruder and the bodies were not eaten, only injured. Since my initial post, I have observed several of the chicks "fighting" one another. So, my question still remains: will the whole "pecking order" process result in death? Will they actually kill one another? [​IMG]
     
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    How old are your chickens? If you have young chicks with much older chickens together, there could be deaths, but if they are similar in age, there should only be the usual pecking. That looks like a predator. Could the shepherd be responsible? I have several yard chickens in with my dogs, in addition to a larger flock over the fence. My dogs, who normally do not bother the grown chickens, will kill a chick, and can't be trusted, ever if a young chicken goes through the fence.
     
  5. Pooma

    Pooma New Egg

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    All of the chicks are similar in age, purchased at the same time. My dog is entirely too large to gain access to the chicks. They were killed inside the enclosure. If indeed a predator, my best guess would be a raccoon over the top. But, again, why not eat them? Or, at least partially? They were injured but fully intact.
     
  6. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    Rats?
     

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