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Same age chicks, one so much smaller

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
These chicks are both 4 weeks old. They're 2 of 20.They've been in the same brooder from the day they were hatched. Same food,etc. The one on the left is just not developing at the same rate as the others. Any ideas?

post #2 of 9

Honestly no idea, except could this be a bantam.  No other way to explain the difference?

 

Want to see the expert opines.

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post #3 of 9
I think that's a good example of failure to thrive, there's probably something wrong with the one on the left, whether it survives and catches up it's hard to say, though more likely if it does survive it will always be smaller and not quite as productive. If the one was a bantam it's legs would be smaller, but they look to be the same as the other one.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

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Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
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post #4 of 9

I had a small ones like yours a couple years ago.  It was even behind in feathering.  For awhile it seemed okay even though it was small.  It died suddenly at about 2 1/2 months old.  I have always assumed it had a genetic problem. 

post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks to all for the replies. I did some reading on failure to thrive, and it seemed that typically those chicks would exhibit some signs of being unwell, or poor eating, etc. So far this little one is as active as the others, and eats and drinks well. Other than size there seems to be no differences from the others. He or she is also feathering out at the same rate as the others of her breed. I really hope nothing is wrong. I'm a first time chicken owner, so I worry over them constantly.
post #6 of 9
I had one that was a runt. It came from a hatchery. I didn’t notice any significant difference when I got the chicks in the mail but one, a male, just never grew very fast. It feathered out and was active, but it was always small.

When I butchered it (I was not going to let those genetics in my flock) its testicles were abnormally small. I can’t remember which internal organs it was but some were just not in proportion to the size they should have been. It just wasn’t right from the start. There was just something wrong with it.

I always get chicks that are a little late to mature or never get as big as others when I get or hatch a bunch of chicks. Some variation is normal. But like yours, mine was extreme.

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When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

 

"If you make every game a life-and-death proposition, you're going to have problems. For one thing, you'll be dead a lot." — former North Carolina coach Dean Smith

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need

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post #7 of 9

The very fact that your under-size chick is smaller than the rest, unless it's a bantam that accidentally got tossed into your order, indicates something is not right.

 

I had such a chick three years ago. It did have eating problems at first and I coaxed it along to the point it developed an appetite, but it was always much smaller. It eventually got picked off by a predator, and that's pretty typical of these chicks that do manage to survive through the early period of development. They are always much more vulnerable than the normal ones and end up dying early from one thing or another.

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
My chicks came from a friend who breeds them, and to my knowledge there are no bantams in her flock. So that is pretty much out as an option. I appreciate everyone's input. Seems like the general consensus is that it's just not right, genetically etc. I'll just continue to give it the best life possible until the inevitable happens I suppose.
post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by rowfarm3 View Post

Thanks to all for the replies. I did some reading on failure to thrive, and it seemed that typically those chicks would exhibit some signs of being unwell, or poor eating, etc. So far this little one is as active as the others, and eats and drinks well. Other than size there seems to be no differences from the others. He or she is also feathering out at the same rate as the others of her breed. I really hope nothing is wrong. I'm a first time chicken owner, so I worry over them constantly.

 

I had the same thought - failure to thrive is usually from lack of nutrition or serious problems.

 

Hope the chick continues to eat, drink and be active and lives a long, happy life.

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