Poor husbandry?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Doulaness, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. Doulaness

    Doulaness In the Brooder

    13
    21
    27
    Feb 28, 2018
    I got into the chicken raising life from my cousin. He set me up with a few already layers and I have added layers since. So i took a big leap and decided to start with fresh baby chicks.
    Initially i started with 7. On day one, 2 had died. Then i replaced them. We have been losing 1 on average every other day. Replacing as we go along. They are all 2 weeks old today, but i dont seem to understand why they are dropping. We lost 3 polish, 1 silver laced wyandotte and 1 baram. Remaining are 3 salmon, 2 jersey blue and an ameraucana.
    I have changed their entire metal brooder(scrubbed with hot water and a scant amount of dawn soap) after our fourth death. They have fresh pine shavings, fresh water daily and fresh medicated feed daily. No poop stuck to any hatches. The light temp is currently set at 90. All chicks are fine during the day, but ALWAYS die in the middle of the night or very early morning (before the kids rise).

    Any I, the newby chick lady, doing something wrong? How can i prevent further unexplained deaths? How can they be fine for a time and then start dropping? Why am i losing one ever other to every day?

    Thanks for all your support. I always yurn to BYC for info!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. wabbit1964

    wabbit1964 Songster

    824
    161
    176
    Mar 30, 2013
    Maine
    My Coop
    If I understand you are adding new chicks to the existing ones which have been dying? I would if I were you hold off on any new birds until you are sure the survivors are all healthy. I have heard some folks say don't use pine shavings because the chicks might eat it. I have seen others use shavings. You are going to get varying opinions on most everything as everyone has their own way. My only suggestion off the top of my head would be to hold off on any new birds for a bit until things settle down.
     
  3. wabbit1964

    wabbit1964 Songster

    824
    161
    176
    Mar 30, 2013
    Maine
    My Coop
    Now with the deaths being at night.. do you have cats? I'm wondering if in spite of your heat light being set at 90 they are still getting too chilled for whatever reason and are dying from being cold??
     
  4. Doulaness

    Doulaness In the Brooder

    13
    21
    27
    Feb 28, 2018
    Yes we have stopped the replacement process at this point. Let these ones grow hopefully to maturity and we will do a new batch later in the spring.
     
  5. Doulaness

    Doulaness In the Brooder

    13
    21
    27
    Feb 28, 2018
    No we do not have cats. I have one mutt dog who does not pay any mind to the chicks at all. I have a screen over the brooder to prevent escapes. I had considered still being too cold at night but they hover around the light, not directly under as I have read they will if cold.
     
  6. canalcolt

    canalcolt Songster

    118
    93
    116
    Jun 16, 2016
    I agree with wabbit. Maybe at night the temp is getting too cold. Do u have the chicks set up in the inside of the house or outside?
     
  7. Doulaness

    Doulaness In the Brooder

    13
    21
    27
    Feb 28, 2018
    They are inside, off the ground. I have a thermometer just to monitor temp. Light is on continuously.
     
  8. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    27,610
    26,165
    917
    Nov 7, 2012
    CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
    How are they acting during the day? Running about, eating and drinking, playing? Any standing around, laying around, eyes closed, down puffed up? Any diarrhea, foamy poops? Is it possible that you have a mouse or rat, or something else that may be scaring them during the night, causing them to pig pile? Pig piling can result in bottom chicks being smothered.
     
  9. coach723

    coach723 Crowing

    2,622
    3,872
    331
    Feb 12, 2015
    North Florida
    Out of an abundance of caution I would probably switch to a new bag or even brand of feed, check the date on the bag to make sure it's fresh. May not be the issue, but I've gotten bad bags.
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 likes this.
  10. Doulaness

    Doulaness In the Brooder

    13
    21
    27
    Feb 28, 2018
    Acting great during the day. Eating, drinking, making a mess and running around. Napping frequently. On the day we notice the changes in behavior, they sleep more, stop eating and interact less, usually that night, they die. Poops look completely normal, no diarrhea, blood or foam. Absolutely no chance of mouse or rat scaring them. They only seem to pigpile when the one dies, they all rush over and trample it to its final breath.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: