Weird Q - chick dying? Addicted to crickets?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by OCeggs23, Feb 11, 2017.

  1. OCeggs23

    OCeggs23 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2017
    Orange County, CA
    Okay this may be weird but bear with me...
    We have had 2 little Welsummer chicks since last Saturday (so for a week) and they were hatched the Wed prior so they are a week and a half now (roughly). We bought them from a local store that gets their chicks from Privett in NM.
    A few days ago (Wednesday) our kids caught 2 crickets and put them in the brooder for some fun for the chicks. They went CRAZY for the crickets! It was a lot of fun to watch. Both Welsummers (Camo and Yolko) did great and were fine before and after. They chased, caught and ate the crickets.
    Fast forward to yesterday morning - Camo seemed tired but ate and drank fine when she was roused. (We use a MHP at nite for bedtime and a heatlamp for "daytime" for the chicks since it has been so cold and rainy here in SoCal!)
    Yesterday late afternoon we brought home 3 Easter Egger chicks. They are bigger boned it seems. More rough and tumble definitely. Both Welsummers seemed fine at first. All 5 chicks were running around, eating and drinking and playing.
    Toward the end of the evening my husband caught 4 crickets and put them in the brooder. Of course, the chicks went nuts hunting them down and eating them. I dont think Camo got one but she pecked the end off one that another chick caught.
    After that, all the chicks were looking around for crickets. Anytime we made a movement around the brooder the chicks thought we were putting more crickets in so they would get excited and start hunting around. Eventually they calmed down and went to bed under the MHP fine. Camo did seem tired again at the end of the day.
    This morning she has been very "tired". Laying down a lot, not eating or drinking. The other chicks run over her or jump on her accidentally. It is very distressing to watch! A few times she has walked over to the food and water area but will just stand there and look around. Not eat and not drink. Eventually she just lays back down.
    I placed her in a separate area so she could eat and drink in peace. I even put some different kind of food as well as some hardboiked egg to entice her. But she didnt do either, she just chirped loudly like she wanted to be back with her crazy compatriots.
    I put her back in the main brooder and she pecked at the food for a couple seconds before she got pushed out of the way by some roughhousing Easter Eggers. When I shooed them she didn't resume eating. She laid down again.
    The only time she looks perky is when a movement happens that makes the chicks think a cricket is around. Then she gets interested and gets up to look. But once she doesn't find one, she lays back down.
    Right now she's eating a little bit of food. She was laying down and got trampled by her playing sisters so I moved her next to the feeder for shelter. And now, 20 seconds later she has stopped eating, wandered over to the middle of the brooder and laid down kind of on her side. A big EE chick sat on her and she was laying strangely so I picked her up and made her drink a couple times and now she's laying again (normally).
    I am just losing my mind! What is going on with her??? I have electrolytes in the water. She pooped and it was kind of runny/slimey brown/green. No red in it.
    Every now and again she'll pop up and just stand there and look around. Then lay down again. She holds her wings kind of away from her body when she lays down - is she trying to warm herself more? She has hardly eaten or had much to drink so far.
    Ugh I am worried and confused... What is happening here?

    Here is a picture of her laying right now:
  2. BBCHICKS123

    BBCHICKS123 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 19, 2016
    Wander land
    About how hot is it in the brooder she looks a bit hot in the picture.
    She could just be tired.
    Has she ate anything besides the crickets, the crickets should not be a problem.
    I hope she starts doing better if there is anything else you need please ask if l am not on this thread feel free to PM me

    -Bobi Sue
  3. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Flock Master

    Nov 7, 2012
    Agreed. She looks over heated. Any time chicks are overheated, that is an emergency situation IMO, and needs to be rectified immediately. Many more chicks are killed with too much heat than from not being warm enough. Is there any reason why you are using a heat lamp AND a MHP? IMO you should choose one or the other. I'd opt for the heating pad because it is so very easy to overheat chicks with the heat lamp. What are the dimensions of your brooder? And what is the temp under the lamp and at the other end of the brooder?
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2017
  4. Zoomie

    Zoomie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 6, 2015
    Mora, NM USA
    The chick does look and act as though it is too hot.

    Also, are you feeding them grit? If you are only giving them the chick starter crumble, they do not need grit. But if you are feeding them anything else, such as crickets, they need grit.
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Ditto on the heat and the grit.
  6. rebrascora

    rebrascora Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    Another thought is that the crickets have brought coccidia in with them. What does their poop look like?...the chicks not the crickets obviously! Are you using medicated starter? Might be worth getting some Corid and treating them. Also a good idea to check for pasty butt first....particularly if there is a chance they have overheated. Chicks will usually cheap pretty constantly with pasty butt as they strain to poop, but not always.
    1 person likes this.
  7. OCeggs23

    OCeggs23 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2017
    Orange County, CA
    Hi all, thanks for the replies.
    The heat lamp is on and the MHP is off. (We do this to mimic day and night since there hasnt been a lot of natural light with all our rain.) The light is a 75 watt bulb. None of the other chicks act this way and there are cooler areas to retreat to.
    I put a flat "tray" of sand and dirt in there yesterday when we brought the EEs home. But they were going after it so much, like esting the sand like crazy, it worried me so after a while I took it out. Should I put it back in? The sand isn't super fine...
  8. BobDBirdDog

    BobDBirdDog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 8, 2014
    I am hoping that the chick starter is medicated as that would rule out coccidia just as my "always first assumption" any time a chick or adult does not act right, then I move on to other things at the same time to cover all the bases.

    Oh we all love them but there is an issue that a lot of people are not aware worms (aka horsehair worms). Yes worms in grasshoppers and crickets. While all reports, studies and other make the statement that the worm only sets up house in insects, it makes better sense to weary on the side of cautions that to ignore the possibilities.

    I am not saying the chick has worms, but that I was just reminded of that when I read the post so I thought I would pass that along.
  9. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Flock Master

    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains
    How is your chick doing?
    Have you observed her drinking?
    What does her poop look like?

    Chicks will eat sand, dirt, poop, sometimes a bit of bedding, etc. Put the sand/dirt mix back in or provide a purchased commercial chick grit (crushed granite) for them.

    As others have suggested, she does look like she is overheated. They way she looks - fluffed up and lethargic can also be from dehydration and/or Coccidiosis. You may want to give Corid as suggested in previous posts. Corid dosage is 1 1/2 teaspoons Corid powder per gallon or 2 teaspoons of 9.6% Corid liquid per gallon.
    Give for 5-7 days - make sure this is the ONLY water available during that time period. Mix a fresh batch at least once a day.

    All the chicks can have Corid if you like - it won't hurt them, but if you only want to treat her - then separate her.

    After you finish the Corid treatment (5-7days) give poultry vitamins and probiotics/yogurt for a couple of days.

    Please keep us posted.

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