Rhode Island Reds

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by mbrennan1954, Dec 27, 2008.

  1. mbrennan1954

    mbrennan1954 New Egg

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    Has anyone had problems raising Rhode Island Reds? I got 6 of them about 6 years ago and all 6 died within 2 years. They all died one at a time over a period of a year. None showed any signs of being sick. I thought that it was probably in the genes because it was possibly the same flock. I got 6 more 1 1/2 years ago and the same thing has happend to 3 of them. I have other chickens that were adults when I got them and I have had them for 6 years and they are still doing fine.

    I have 8 assorted hens, a dog, a garage cat, and a whole river full of fish that won't always bite when I ask them to. [​IMG]
     
  2. ibpboo

    ibpboo Where Chickens Ride Horses

    Jul 9, 2007
    always changing
    [​IMG]

    I have RIR's and have not had that problem. But I did have a black chicken years ago just die like that. Looked like it just fell off the roost during the night. [​IMG]
    And then another one died, just found it dead, so I decided not to get those anymore.
     
  3. flamingauburnmustang

    flamingauburnmustang Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 14, 2008
    South Africa
    Welcome to BYC!!!! [​IMG]

    I have never had that problem before. Did you ever get them examined by the vet? Maybe he could diagnose something that you didn't notice.

    Keep a watch on your current flock, and take note of any strange behaviour. Notify the vet of any changes and get them checked.

    Have you noticed any symptoms?
     
  4. Rusty Hills Farm

    Rusty Hills Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 3, 2008
    Up at the barn
    I kept a closed flock of RIRs for many years and it was my experience that my birds lived 8-10 years and laid for most of those years. This was a heritage flock. Perhaps your birds were actually production reds? These are not true RIRs, but a cross between RIRs and NHs. This cross makes for a very productive bird but not necessarily a long-living bird. For that you want true RIRs, more specifically a heritage line.

    HTH
     
  5. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    Some mystery deaths are caused by toxicity in waterers- such as acidic water or water to which acid cider vinegar is added when the waterer is galvanized (zinc is toxic to birds). But yes, must be scary not to know...
     
  6. Smoky73

    Smoky73 Lyon Master

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    Colorado
    Perhaps your birds were actually production reds? These are not true RIRs, but a cross between RIRs and NHs. This cross makes for a very productive bird but not necessarily a long-living bird. For that you want true RIRs, more specifically a heritage line.

    I agree with this, my friend had gotten some chicks accidently (she works at the post office) and someone refused a package of chicks. She ended up with some red sex links, and they all died around 2 years old.​
     
  7. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Of my hatchery RIRs, two are already dead from internal laying before three years old, which began about their 2nd birthday. The third one is still going strong. My other three are the deep colored exhibition type RIRs. They are very robust and healthy and gorgeous and I really dont expect that to happen to them. They all started laying about 30 weeks old, much later than most hatchery stock, so I believe I'll see longevity from these three big girls.
    In all, I've lost 4 birds, same age, 2 RIRs, 2 SLWs, all from a big hatchery, all to the same hormonal issue, internal laying. All between 2 and 3 yrs old when they died.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2008
  8. ebonykawai

    ebonykawai Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have a heritage flock of RIRs and they are all very hearty and healthy. Most of mine started laying after 36 weeks. They are not bred for production, unlike hatchery birds, and so are free of most of the health issues.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2008
  9. krackerhill

    krackerhill Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 8, 2008
    Florida
    I have had the best of luck with my reds. Knock on wood they are
    quite reliable egg producers. They were free ranging but are back in their house due to my lack of humor in the daily egg hunt.
     
  10. RooptyDoo

    RooptyDoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Illinois
    The only problems I had with Rhode Islands Reds is the roosters. [​IMG]
     

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