Sudden, unexplained chick death


In the Brooder
7 Years
May 25, 2012
We just picked our chicks up on Thursday (5/24). Everyone was healthy the first day. The second day my maybe-RIR-maybe-Americana (Ms Clucks) developed pasty butt. I cleaned her up 1-3 times per day, and today I thought her vent was looking much, much better. But this evening my poor daughter found her dead. There was no blood, missing feathers or drainage from any part of her body. Her vent wasn't 'perfect' but it didn't appear to be clogged (I had seen it much worse). I'm concerned for my other 4 babies (2 Buff Orpingtons, 2 Barred Rocks).

Somethings I have considered:
Last night they made a huge mess of their water, soaking the bedding. As soon as I realized it this morning, I cleaned the brooder, dried them up and made sure they were warm. Maybe she was just too stressed from being wet? They were plenty warm, even though everything was damp.

We had them out for a bit early afternoon when family visited. One of the visitors, who has been a farmer for many, many years, fed all the chicks strawberry bits from my garden (so no pesticides or anything). Maybe she wasn't ready for other food?

I put a small amount of apple cider vinegar in the water per my research for healthy digestive tracts. Could that have been what did it? (I check their water and change it at least 6 times a day anyway.)

She has always been the smallest and the only one with pasty butt, maybe she has been sickly and I just am not experienced enough to notice it?

The other 4 are VERY noisy this evening and keep pecking around the area where I found Ms Clucks body. However, everyone else seems happy and healthy. Everyone is eating and drinking. Poop looks normal (I think!)

Any ideas? Or do you think this is just a case of random chick death? Thanks for your help!


Chicken Boots
11 Years
Oct 3, 2011
My Coop
My Coop
I don't know what happened to her.... But I don't think anyone of those things had anything to do with it. The apple cider vinegar is good for them. And I had it for my chikens when they were little and there fine.

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