Screaming, Frantic, Week Old Chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by MaidenShade, Sep 1, 2014.

  1. MaidenShade

    MaidenShade Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2013
    We have 2 (American Game Fowl) week-old chicks we hatched.

    Our babies are screaming if we're not sitting with them. This has gone on since day 1. We've raised and lowered the temp, put a mirror in there, moved them to a larger brooder, put a radio in the room and left it on, tried taking them outside to see if they liked the grass - nothing helps. If we walk away, they freak out.

    They think we're their mama, and they don't want to be alone. You know they'd never be out of sight of their mama in the natural. I can tell this is what is wrong. If we sit with them, they relax, walk around and peck, and make normal chick trilling, happy sounds. If we start walking out of their sight (just like if their mama left), they scream in alarm and jump trying to get out to follow us, manically pecking at the screen. This will incessantly go on for hours, and I can't bear it any longer.

    I'm seriously afraid they are going to do themselves harm - they act frantic.

    Now you can call me crazy, but I've had babies before - they never acted like this. But I never only had 2, and I never hatched them. The youngest I had were day old. Maybe the ones I've had before never imprinted on a human - but ours obviously did. Or maybe it's to do with the breed? I don't know.

    The only other thing I can think to try is to add more chicks, or to try and find a mama with babies to buy/borrow... Will mama chickens take in strange babies?

    We can't keep sitting by them all day, every day. You might think, "JUST LEAVE THEM SCREAM!" But I am not kidding, they don't stop. That can't be good for week old babies. They need to eat and sleep.

    Image: Daddy David taking his turn chick-sitting. Reads his book, eats, has coffee - hour after hour with the chicks... then it's my turn.

    Please help! Thanks

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  2. lightchick

    lightchick Overrun With Chickens

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    Apr 3, 2014
    Minnesota
    Strange! I had a chick by herself once and she would peep like crazy whenever I left! I would put a blanket over the so it's be dark and then I put a little blanket that I made for her and put it in for her to cuddle with. I'd try and make it as dark as possible when you leave so they go to sleep.
    Also if they get lots of exercise when they are playing with you they will be tired enough to go to sleep. I take my day old chicks outside if it's warm enough and once I bring them in they are tired enough to sleep. They will scream awhile after that, but they should stop after a little while. It is stressful.
    How many do you have? Maybe you should put a big stuffed animal in with them.....they should cuddle with it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2014
  3. MaidenShade

    MaidenShade Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2013
    There are 2 - they don't settle down when we cover the brooder - there is a heat lamp giving off red light, so it can only get so dark. As I said, we did try taking them outside - they screamed out there, too. We are working on stuff so can't sit next to their cage the entire time out there.

    So, how exactly do you "play" with them? They scream like we're going to kill them if we try to pick them up, and run, terrified, from our hands.

    Unfortunately they don't snuggle, they ignore anything I put in there...
     
  4. lightchick

    lightchick Overrun With Chickens

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    Apr 3, 2014
    Minnesota
    They kind of sound like they are really fussy and bossy.....with my chick she'd snuggle and sleep in my hands. I'd take my chick outside and walk around and she'd chase me and then she'd be tired after that. So your chicks just want to be NEAR you? If they aren't tame then I don't see how another chick would help. What do they do at night?
     

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