SOS... Lt Brahmas pecked to bleeding!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by TheBajan, Apr 4, 2018.

  1. TheBajan

    TheBajan Chirping

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    Help! We have encountered our first medical and social emergency! I just came in to find that 4 out of our 5 Light Brahma's are bleeding due to the other chicks pecking at their rumps. One of them is missing half her tail feathers! What should I do? I've separated four of them in a separate storage crate and covered it with the lid most of the way to help retain heat. The fifth girl I have in a small dog crate by herself because she's bleeding enough that even the other brahmas are picking at her.
    First question.... is it safe to keep the four girls together?
    Next question.... how can I help them to heal? Should I bathe them? Is there cream that would help?
    Finally, how long do I need to keep them separate? I don't have enough heat lamps for the four different locations but they are all in the same room with a heater keeping the room at 72 degrees.
    These birds are almost 3 weeks old.
     
  2. orrpeople

    orrpeople Grading essays - be back soon!

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    At three weeks old, they may be okay without the heat... That said, sometimes the lights we use to keep the brooder warm can inspire feather picking. What color light bulb do you have? Red tends to be better.
    Yes, they can heal - a little wound wash and Neosporin without the pain reliever will work fine. As long as there is blood visible, you still run the risk of cannibalism. They can't help it, they're instinctively drawn to it.
    Is there a way to keep the room dark tonight? Maybe a heat source without light like a heating pad? You could put them all together during the night and then monitor them during the day.
    Sorry this is happening. Sometimes raising chicks can be frustrating! :)
     
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  3. TheBajan

    TheBajan Chirping

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    Mar 18, 2018
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    I have been using ceramic heat bulbs that do not put out any light. Yes, I can make the room dark by just turning off the light. What is wound wash and where do I find it? The four that I put in a storage crate together are already being quiet and still. Not sure if they're just scared stiff or if it's because the crate is black so there's minimal light coming in. I do have the lid MOSTLY covering it to retain heat. The fifth one is by herself and she is also being very quiet although she did get up and eat. Should I buy the red heat lamps?
     
  4. TheBajan

    TheBajan Chirping

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    Mar 18, 2018
    Davisburg, Michigan
    I have been using ceramic heat bulbs that do not put out any light. Yes, I can make the room dark by just turning off the light. What is wound wash and where do I find it? The four that I put in a storage crate together are already being quiet and still. Not sure if they're just scared stiff or if it's because the crate is black so there's minimal light coming in. I do have the lid MOSTLY covering it to retain heat. The fifth one is by herself and she is also being very quiet although she did get up and eat. Should I buy the red heat lamps?
     
  5. orrpeople

    orrpeople Grading essays - be back soon!

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    No, no light is best.
    I just use either a diluted betadine/water mix to soak them (light blow dry afterwards so they don't get cold) in or spray/cotton swab this kind of thing. 20180404_165827.jpg can you post pics of the wounds. Sometimes really superficial ones really bleed a lot!
     
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  6. Ruralhideaway

    Ruralhideaway Crowing

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    How big is their house? Too much light, overcrowding, not enough protein, and too much heat can be contributing factors.
     
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  7. TheBajan

    TheBajan Chirping

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    Mar 18, 2018
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    Currently, they are in our house... in the office. The room is about 12x12 and the brooder box is 4'x5'. I'm feeding the Dumar 20% starter/grower along with a 3 or 4 cut tops of strawberries a day. The Dumar stays refilled all day for them. Fresh water is always available. I'm also giving them a handful of grit per day. We are keeping the room's temp between 69 and 72 degrees. The temp under the ceramic heat bulb is kept at 95 but I'm going to raise the bulb to lower the temp today.
    We check on them, talk, sing, hum, and touch them several times throughout the day. The damage was done in just a matter of a couple of hours. I'll try to post pics.
    I'm getting conflicting advice about heat lamps and lights. Some are saying I should DEFINITELY be using red heat lamps and others are saying no heat lamps. I'm confused. Do the red heat lamps help or not?
     
  8. Rachel Taylor

    Rachel Taylor Crowing

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    I don’t know if heat encourages pecking at all but 95° seems high for three weeks old. But I don’t know if there’s any connection between the two. I’m sorry you’re going through this. That’s rough when there still so little.
     
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  9. orrpeople

    orrpeople Grading essays - be back soon!

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    I'm sorry if I didn't do a very good job explaining the light situation.
    Think of it like this: the best possible environment for a chick is with its mamma, where it lives in the shelter of her feathers and has regular day and night patterns. It sounds like you have been simulating this somewhat with your situation. Lots of folks, including me, use a heating pad over a wire arch to give chicks the ability to hide and warm up, but also the ability to run around and get away from the heat. If you search "mamma heating pad" on BYC, you'll find a lot of info.

    The red light bulb option is kind of a next step down in keeping chicks warm. It reduces the 24/7 glare of the clear bulb, but still doesn't give the chicks regular day/night cycles.

    It sounds like you are doing a good job with your chooks (btw, additional grit isn't necessary when they're on the chick starter) but it probably is too warm for them if 95 is your constant temp at 3 weeks. Sometimes the agitation caused by temperature can drive them to pick at each other.
     
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  10. TheBajan

    TheBajan Chirping

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    Mar 18, 2018
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    Thanks for the comments. I bathed the one chick who is in the worst shape. I put triple antibiotic on her tail and rump. Then I used the Blue Kote on all five of the Brahmas tail ends just to prevent any further temptations from pecking. I've raised the room temp up a bit and lowered the temp of my ceramic bulbs. I purchased red heat bulbs but I'm not resorting to using them now. Thank you for the clarification on the point of using them. I'm going to introduce the 4 who are not really injured back into the flock and leave the single one separate for a while. Thanks again.
     

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