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Novice farmer: should I be alarmed?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by StevieColumbusOH, May 18, 2011.

  1. StevieColumbusOH

    StevieColumbusOH New Egg

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    May 4, 2011
    Hello. First year poultry farmer here. We have lost 6 (one month old) chicks out of 55 since we moved them outside to the chicken tractor last weekend. 5 died at once and looked like they got struck by lightning, meaning they were close to each other and flat. I'm thinking maybe they smothered one another when they got cold? Then we lost another one today for no apparent reason.

    My question is: is it typical to lose this many chicks? I feel bad and wonder if we are doing something wrong.
     
  2. azhenhouse

    azhenhouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 12, 2010
    North Eastern Arizona
    What are your temperatures there? Is there any possibility that they are eating something toxic?
     
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    They were probably chilled, huddled together for warmth before they died.
     
  4. StevieColumbusOH

    StevieColumbusOH New Egg

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    May 4, 2011
    Another one died today and several are sick! They have glossy eyes, are lethargic, and puffed up. Do they have a disease? We quaranteened the sick ones. Help!!
     
  5. BookWorm243

    BookWorm243 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 13, 2010
    Franklin, NC
    What are you temps like where you are located? Do you have a heat lamp out there for them? Does there poop look normal?
     
  6. StevieColumbusOH

    StevieColumbusOH New Egg

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    May 4, 2011
    They are puffed up and slow-moving. Rainy in the 60s. No heat lamp. In covered chicken tractor on pasture. On Chick Start food. They are 4 weeks old.
     
  7. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    At 4 weeks, 60 degree temps are much too cold for them. They need 80 degrees at 4 weeks (95 degrees for week 1; 90 degrees for week 2; 85 degrees for week 3; 80 degrees for week 4). The rain makes it worse.

    Give them a heat lamp that will keep the temperature to at least 80 degrees (since they are ill, warmer may be better). Add sulmet to their water. If they are suffering coccidiosis (common with young chicks) it is a cocccidiostat; however, it is also an antibiotic, and will help with any infection they may have caught. If there was not a possibility of coccidiosis, I would have suggested using duramycin instead of the sulmet.

    With the heat lamp, you need to place it so that they can move closer to get more heat, and farther away to get less heat. This allows them to self-regulate the temperature that makes them comfortable.
     
  8. BookWorm243

    BookWorm243 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 13, 2010
    Franklin, NC
    Quote:2X
    Also can you put some bedding down? The ground will get cold at night!
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2011
  9. StevieColumbusOH

    StevieColumbusOH New Egg

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    May 4, 2011
    No their food is not medicated.
     
  10. chickiepie

    chickiepie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would agree. The poor things are probably too cold and need a heat lamp. Hopefully the rest will be fine.
     

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