Pheasant chicks dropping like flies!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Barb Schuetz, Jun 29, 2007.

  1. Barb Schuetz

    Barb Schuetz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 24, 2007
    Viroqua, WI
    I ordered 50 pheasant chicks from my usual guy under the impression that I was to pay X amount and had to order a min. of 50. Well, apparently I got them from his stock and am paying quite a bit less(and getting 3 more) which I thought was a bargain. Then, after about only 8 hrs, they start dropping. They will seperate themselves, peep hoarse, raspy sounding peeps, lay down, gasp for air and die. They have food(game bird starter), water, a 75 watt bulb on them in a room that is at least 80 degrees, and now have straw for bedding(they had paper towel yesterday). I called my guy, lets call him Chet, and explained what is happening(so far I have lost 12!). He told me that they aren't getting enough heat and that I need to have at least a 100 watt bulb on them and that is why they're suffering. He then proceeded to tell me that if they've been chilled, I should get some tksajhfoaisf(whatever it is in medicated chick feed) and that should help. Now, I still haven't paid for them because since they were from his private stock, he couldn't use the credit card machine and I didn't have cash on me. I'm supposed to go in today to pick up a cockeral that I ordered and pay for the pheasants. he's not offering any replacement or taking off of what I owe him. I think he knows they're sick and is trying to put the blame on me which makes me wary of ordering anything from him again. I don't want to have to pay for dead birds, even if it was a deal- they're still not cheap! Not to mention, I'm expecting an order of meat birds from him AND an order of chukars. Do I cancel my orders and go somewhere else? The problem with that is that the season for these gamebirds is at an end and I was pleased to find that Chet can still get them. Well, anyway, I started feeding the medicated chick feed to the pheasant chicks about and hour or 2 ago and they seem to be doing ok. Any thoughts, suggestions?
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2007
  2. arwmommy

    arwmommy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I know baby chicks are supposed to be at 95 degrees. What is the temp inside the brooder???
     
  3. missusduray

    missusduray Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2007
    Northern Minnesota
    Get 2 infared(they will be red glass bulbs) heat bulbs and lamps to go with them. Plug them in and space them enough apart so that the birds have enough room to gather under the lights. They will be high wattage. Then make sure that you have phesant starter. They need 28% protein or they will die. Did you introduce them to the water by dipping their beaks so that they know where it is? They are attracted to the color green so maybe put some green shiny pebbles in the water so that they want to peck it. Pheasants like to be really warm(between 100 and 110 for our pheasants) for the first few weeks. Trampeling and huddleing from cold will cause them to die. Baby phesants will need at least 2 sq feet per bird for the first 2 weeks. As adults they will need as much as 6 sq feet per bird. As for paying him, i have no advice other than the fact that pheasants are hard to raise. Good luck.
    Kristyne
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2007
  4. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2007
    Maine
  5. Barb Schuetz

    Barb Schuetz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 24, 2007
    Viroqua, WI
    The food is 30% protein and they started drinking as soon as I put a waterer in with them. I'm going to go find another lamp that i can put on them now. I have to say that since I gave them the med. feed I haven't lost a one and they seem to be doing fine and happy.
     
  6. missusduray

    missusduray Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2007
    Northern Minnesota
    medicated feed wont hurt them. I hope that it solves your problem. We lost 6 of ours in a week when we first got them. Good luck,
    Kristyne
     
  7. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

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    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    I spoke to Barb over the phone and from what I can tell, they are kept at or slightly above temp, so I do not believe the temperature to be the main issue. I think one of two things: #1) the stress of being cornered, captured, and thrown in a box, driven home and put in another box thats foreign may have simply been more than some could handle (stress), or #2) they are sick, or were sick, or were hatched in less than ideal conditions by an inexperienced breeder, or their parent stock was/is sick thus transferring it to them.

    I tend (still) to lean to #2 simply because I can tell the 'guy' has no freakin clue what he's doing. First of all, if they WERE chilled, teramyacin (is the word she was trying to spell and what he suggested to give them because they were "chilled") wont help! Its an antibiotic used to treat ailments from weepy eyes, and illnesses. Its the same drug in medicated chick starter feeds. What good would THAT do unless the 'guy' KNEW the babies were (or could be) sick? And (like I told Barb on the phone) if thats the case, then this could be a bigger issue. She has other chicks, goslings, and geese to worry about now too.
     
  8. missusduray

    missusduray Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2007
    Northern Minnesota
    Barb,
    I feel bad for you and the whole situation. I hope that it all gets cleared up. That guy should be ashamed if he knowingly sold you sick birds. Hopefully the rest of your animals wont get harmed because of his stupidity. It sounds like you are doing everything right. I was just trying to pass on information that I had to learn the hard way. Once we figured out the problems ours started to thrive. Hopefully you find your answers. [​IMG]
    Kristyne
     
  9. Rafter 7 Paint Horses

    Rafter 7 Paint Horses Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 13, 2007
    East Texas
    I personally haven't raised pheasants....yet.
    I have friends who do raise them, and they tell me they are very difficult to hatch & raise.

    I am confused about a couple of things.

    1. Terramycin as the meds in medicated chick starter? I've never seen this. The only thing I have ever found in medicated chick starter is Amprolium, which is only for coccidiosis as far as I know. What brand has terramycin in it?

    2. Nobody ever really said what temps the brooder was being kept at or how much space they have. Unless I missed it, the only things that were said was, a 75 watt light on them in a room that is at least 80 degrees, and from what I can tell they are kept at or slightly above temp. That seemed very vague to me. What is the temp they are being kept at, is the brooder draft free? Is it in a very quiet place, pheasants (as told to me) do not do well with disturbances.

    Since I am contemplating starting to raise pheasants, I would like to know more about your experiences & specifics on your setup.

    Thanks
    Jean
     
  10. hinkjc

    hinkjc Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Jan 11, 2007
    PA
    I am leaning more towards the food. Unless I am misunderstanding your comments, it sounds like after you changed the feed, they stopped dying. Maybe the feed was bad.

    A 75 watt bulb in an 80 degree room can be sufficient, if the lamp is low enough. If it's too high and not cozy warm inside the brooder, they will cool and die as well.

    Stress is another factor that could result in this - cooling, overheating, changes in feed, light differences, etc can all cause stress in pheasants.

    The only way to prove he sold you sick birds would be to have a necropsy done. Some diseases are reportable, so it may not be a bad idea. If this person is selling sick birds, perhaps someone should be notified.

    Jody
     

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