mixing day-old with 7-day old

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chickenfan
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by chickenfan » Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:37 pm

Thank you Marigold. Have you any idea how common things like Mareks are - which wouldn't show up for c 5 months? I guess the only other alternative would be to try introducing one of the larger chicks in a darkened environment. But I expect now they have got the habit of pecking the smaller one this might carry on. I'll see what I can find tomorrow.
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by chickenfan » Sun Jun 29, 2014 10:22 am

I've bought two chicks, but having got them home, one is listless and lethargic so I don't dare mix them with mine. I bought it from a room with several hundred chicks of different ages in separate containers. I know one should never mix chicks of different ages because they carry different health and immunity issues. Does anyone know if its OK if they are in different containers? What kinds of things can one-week old chicks be carrying?

Its a minefield buying in. No-one seems to carry out biosecurity measures. I walked away from miserable-looking chicks on Friday and never again want to support 'chick-farming'.

My own chick is doing well in spite of only watching the older chicks through a container. I'm wondering how long I can continue this for?
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by Marigold » Sun Jun 29, 2014 1:04 pm

I guess its your call on this one, Chickenfan, there's really no 'right' answer that anyone could give you, I'm afraid. You just have to balance the danger of infecting your chick, with the problem of rearing him/her in isolation. Are the ones you bought the same size and age as yours?
Maybe you'll just have to bite the bullet and put them all in together and see what happens, otherwise the age gap will widen and you'll have another pair to try to raise in isolation. Would commercially hatched chicks have had any vaccinations?
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by chickenfan » Sun Jun 29, 2014 2:08 pm

They aren't commercial chicks, but from the smallholder breeders list.
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by chrismahon » Sun Jun 29, 2014 2:41 pm

I'm not sure I would risk mixing them, but I don't see you have a lot of choice here. Is the one chick still 'sick'? If so perhaps that shouldn't go in?

We've bought in a few chicks and had two problems. One died of pneumonia at three days and a week old Maran was returned because it was pecking at the eyes of all the others. They won't have been immunised because the programme takes place over the first 4 months or so, based on the sheet I got (from Merryvale I think?)
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by chickenfan » Sun Jun 29, 2014 11:31 pm

Thank you very much Chris for coming back, and for letting me know what happened to your bought-in chicks. I am not worried so much about making my chick ill as bringing some illness into my flock. This happened to me a few years ago and I lost three quarters of my flock. I'll never forget it. So I only hatch my own birds now. Surprisingly, my lone chick seems perfectly happy so long as it is in with the others, and is growing well. You seem to know a lot about poultry. Do you think it might be enough to just watch the others? It eats when they eat etc and seems to have a relaxed character. But it will be a lot of weeks before it is a similar size to actually be with them.

The very lethargic new chick is picking up a little, but they both spend most of the day under the electric hen asleep. I've kept them in isolation.

It sounds as though your Marans chick got stressed, or apparently if they are get exposed to too bright a light they can go a bit crazy. I am sure it is not true aggression at that age.
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by chrismahon » Mon Jun 30, 2014 7:40 am

It was a lovely little Marans chick as well Chickenfan. Used to make lots of sweet trilling noises and loved human company. Sat on my wife's shoulder all the way back to the breeder twittering away. I think it saw the reflection in the eyes and was attracted to peck it and we couldn't take any risks with the others.

It may well be happy enough just watching the others. I think the important thing is it isn't alone because, as I'm sure you know, it will get stressed and ill without company.

I think you are wise to keep the new chicks in isolation. Something sounds wrong to me and they may be carriers of something nasty.
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by chickenfan » Mon Jun 30, 2014 1:10 pm

Hi Chris, Good to hear from you. I am so sorry about your marans chick. They can be so characterful and friendly. I got a couple of day old organic hybrid chicks to go with my chick that was born 5 days late. They had just been transported in. One of these was crazily vicious attacking the other chicks and even drawing blood. I was very worried about it but they said it was because it had been stressed or in too bright a light. I gave it a homeopathic remedy for stress and darkened the room and it became quite normal.

Re the new chicks, their poo is really smelly. I'm not sure what this is. Maybe I should treat for cocci? They are just 8 days old.
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Re: mixing day-old with 7-day old

Post by chrismahon » Mon Jun 30, 2014 2:08 pm

The only time we have had smelly poo with chicks is when we bought French crumb with fish extract as the protein content. The stench within a day was horrendous. All the poos were like brown sludge. Took several days on better food to get the poo back to normal. So I don't know what the reason is Chickenfan. Have they some kind of infection or is it the effect of their previous diet? Has your crumb got ACS additive?

Our chick was in the cellar so, even with the white light, it wasn't that bright. But we could have gone to red and made it darker. Pity I didn't know that 7 years ago, because it was a lovely little thing.
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