One of our broilers died.........

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by juliemom25, Apr 10, 2009.

  1. juliemom25

    juliemom25 Songster

    Apr 4, 2009
    Our chicks are about 2 1/2 weeks old. We have 25 plus brown layers and 20 Cornish X. When they were about a week old, we put them in separate boxes and they have been doing great. All the chicks are on starter feed and I just started them on the medicated chick feeder today.

    THe Cornish X are getting really big and they eat and drink like crazy. They have a constant supply of fresh water and 4 or 5 nights ago I started taking their feed away at night. I know they haven't outgrown their brooder box yet and we are still keeping the temps between 90 and 95 degrees at. Now, the whole brooder box isn't that temp. The box is big and the chicks can easily get away from the heat if they like.

    So, this morning my daughter comes in (they always check the chicks first thing) and tells me she thinks one of the chicks is dead. Sure enough, one of our Cornish X is dead. I can't decide whether I should be worried about the rest of the chicks or not. They seem great. No unusual poop, runny eyes/noes, etc. THey do seem to breath heavy when they are lying down, is that normal?

    What should I do? Anything?

    Thanks so much!!!


  2. Mandalina

    Mandalina Songster

    Apr 1, 2009
    why would you take their food away at night? chicks arent prone to over eating and having it there for them when they do get hungry is a good idea, exp if you have a chick who gets picked on and can only get over to the feeder here and there.
    i would just keep a close eye on the rest of the birds. it may have just been weak or had some other slight issue you didnt notice.
  3. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

    Aug 17, 2008
    Larry, KS
    My Coop
    I'm wondering if your heat is up a little high for 2 1/2 weeks. I think they're supposed to be cooler by 5 degrees each week, but I may be wrong. Anyone else weigh in?
  4. embkm

    embkm Songster

    Jan 16, 2009
    Colbert, Ga
    I think your temps are too high. If they are breathing heavy (panting) they are too hot.. Meaties are also prone to heart attacks because they grow so fast, so it could of been that.

    I would lower the temp and just keep an eye on the rest. And try not to worry too much about them.
  5. PhlyinPheBee

    PhlyinPheBee Poodles, Chicken, Goats--OH MY!!

    Mar 11, 2009
    Northeast Louisiana

    Sorry that you lost one.

    The temp should be 85 at three weeks. My cornish X have feed and water 24/7.

    Good luck on the rest.

  6. juliemom25

    juliemom25 Songster

    Apr 4, 2009
    THanks for the replies.... I will certainly lower the heat.

    I heard that the Cornish X's should have their food taken away at night past a week or so because they will eat themselves to death. We leave the food in all the time for our layers.

    Any other suggestions? Do you think it could have been a fluke?

  7. needtohatch

    needtohatch Songster

    Feb 27, 2009
    Hart Co
    Quote:Meaties do tend to just up and die. They eat so much they grow faster than their systems can handle. We always lose some of ours before they are big enough to butcher. Unless you start losing a bunch or they show symtoms of being sick you should be fine.
  8. chicklips

    chicklips Songster

    Apr 4, 2009
    St. Johns, MI
    My Cornish X are also on the 12 on/12off program. It slows down the growth a bit but I would much rather have smaller birds than dead ones. I think lowering your temp will help your breathing problems.
  9. retiredwithchicks

    retiredwithchicks Songster

    Feb 27, 2009
    Byrdstown, TN
    I had 50 cornish X's last year and lost 15 by the time I put them in the freezer. Some died the last week because they were so big they couldn't walk to eat and drink. I would not let them get that big again. I would process them one or two weeks earlier. It is just the nature of the beast. They just have been breed to be too big.

  10. the_great_snag

    the_great_snag Songster

    Apr 14, 2007
    Staples, Minnesota
    Cornish x rocks should only have access to food for 12 hours a day after the first week or so of life. Otherwise they gain weight faster than their internal organs or skeletons can support.

    By slowing their growth you give their bodies a chance to grow at a more normal rate, helping to avoid some of the broken bones, heart attacks, etc...

    Sounds to me like the OP is doing everything right. You just have to expect some mortality with broiler birds. It's the nature of the beast with birds that are bred for such unnatural weight gain and muscle mass.

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