Please help...CHICKEN EMERGENCY...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by dc7603, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. dc7603

    dc7603 In the Brooder

    Apr 19, 2011
    Please help...we've got 36 (35 as of about 20 minutes ago) broilers and 22 layers in separate brooders. These birds are 3.5 weeks old and have been bedded on pine shavings since they were one day old. We went to change the bedding tonight and didn't have enough pine shavings so we used a mixture of old straw and hay (probably 15 years old). The birds went nuts! They were clucking and gathering in one corner of the brooders. I told my wife that it was just a new feel under their feet and they would get used to it but an hour later they were still in the corners and were not happy...clucking and carrying on and one broiler was dead. Can anyone shed any light on this? I didn't realize that old straw could be a problem. Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
  2. zowieyellowflame

    zowieyellowflame Songster

    Jun 11, 2009
    Nova Scotia
    I don't have any scientific knowledge on this but I bet 15 year old straw could be compromised. Lets face it, 15 years ago Walkmans and floppy discs were still in use. JS Maybe try getting some shavings or newer material. I do know my chickens like their straw in their nest boxes but it has got to be really good straw. No hay, no mold, just nice, golden, dry straw.
  3. pinkwindsong

    pinkwindsong Songster

    Mar 18, 2011
    Laurens SC
    molds. dust could have done it as well as ants.. sometimes they get in the old hay.. hopefully just the dust etc. Id just dump it totally out tonight and paper the bottom till tomorrow and run out to TSC and grab a bag of shavings.

    good luck
  4. Sillystunt

    Sillystunt Master of the Silly

    Jul 11, 2008
    Winter Haven, FL
    Quote:[​IMG] just no cedar shavings.........pine only [​IMG]
  5. dc7603

    dc7603 In the Brooder

    Apr 19, 2011
    Thanks for the replies, my chicken house to be is in an old barn on the lower level. The upper level is full of this old hay, do you think it will be a problem to have them in the same building as the old hay? Update: I changed all the bedding back to pine shavings and my layers are still acting spooked and huddling in the corner.
  6. Noobchick

    Noobchick Songster

    May 23, 2011
    Creedmoor, NC
    To be honest I wouldnt chance it if I were you. That old hay can be home to who knows how many different molds and fungi, not to mention mites, mice, rats, etc, all of which can make chickens sick.

    Any way it can all be cleared out?
  7. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years.

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    do you think anything might have stowed away in the hay and you didn't notice it - snake, mice, rats??? -something scared them
  8. sharol

    sharol Songster

    Jun 13, 2010
    Admire, KS
    Chickens hate change, too. I bought a new (additional) feeder because I had a chicken being excluded from the food. They wouldn't go back in the coop. It was incredible. Usually they just stream in there at bedtime, but that evening they stood outside the door clucking and chirping (10 months old and laying). I would shove one in the pop door, and she would squawk and fly back out in my face. I finally had to move the thing into a corner they couldn't see from the door. A week later, and it is OK again, but they were completely freaked out.

    Maybe it was just the change to something new and unknown??
  9. tclegg

    tclegg Chirping

    May 15, 2011
    Sorry I am still newbie--but have Studied and Read ALOT....feel something is not right in your chickens telling u so...Just this feeling that I have had my whole life whith all creatures since I can remember---always have been like that....(Strays and wild come to me) Change the set up..they r not happy and u need to make it right...bless you all) Maybe Im weird but I dont care GOD loves me!!!!
  10. ragerkid2

    ragerkid2 Songster

    Apr 16, 2011
    Johnstown Pa
    Think about it. You just changed their environment. They have never know any different. The broiler was probably suffocating.

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