A Death in the Flock

Everyone says this is normal when working with chickens, especially babies, but I'm really upset. We had a baby chick die tonight. It was all so surreal. When I left to volunteer at my daughter's school, everything was fine. I came home and took my camera to the brooder to get some pictures and found one of our "squirrel" striped chicks just laying there. (We call them squirrels because at this point we can't tell them apart. I know the hatchery lady told us who they all were, but it just didn't sink in.) Anyway, we immediately separated the chick and put her under her own light with food and water, but I just had a bad feeling. The chick didn't look good at all, especially since her nictitating membrane was closed over her eyes. At first she drank a little for me, but that was it. In a matter of hours, she was dead.

My kids have taken this better than me. We explained to them that this is a fact of farm life. You do the best you can, but sometimes our animals just have to go to heaven.

On my end, I worry that I did something wrong. And, I worry that the chick had some communicable disease and all the rest will catch it.

So, here's to our beautiful chick. May she rest in peace. Here's to the rest of the babies. May they stay well. And, here's to a happier post for tomorrow's Wildlife Wednesday.
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