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Incubator-Chick issue

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
Hello all,

I am a third grade teacher. This is my first time incubating and raising chicks. I had 4 eggs hatch out of 12. The one that is having issues is the last chick that hatched. My students are very attached and we want this chick to survive. I am not sure what is wrong. This chick does not eat or drink unless you feed it. It seems weak but can lift his head up. He will try to walk. At first, I thought he was weak because he started hatching at 5:30 a.m. and did not get done hatching until 5:30 p.m. I took out of the incubator an hour later due to the school closing and would not return until the school opened at 7 a.m. the next day. Immediately I put a heating pad in the area that he was in as well as a bright camping light. He got fluffy and I thought everything was going to be ok. However, the second day he still seemed like he had no energy. So that is when I got the bright idea to start feeding him/her through a medicine dropper. Today his/her third day alive and second day being fed through dropper and I am noticing that he/she still does not have much energy. It also seems to not want to open his eyes. Another teacher noticed that his foot seemed crooked so today I made chicken shoes for him. He took a few steps but does not go over to the water or food area like the other chicks do. Any advice! I want this chick to be ok. Any advice would help. Thank you.
post #2 of 2

The most important thing is to keep him warm. I think around 90 to 100 degrees at this point, but google what the proper temp should be for one week old chicks.  Then, try giving him a few drops of karo syrup.  That will give him energy. Also, you can give him pedialyte, or go to a farm supply store and buy something called Chick Saver.  It's very similar to pedialyte.  The electrolytes will be good for him.


A lot of times weak chicks, and chicks who take a long time to hatch, get splay leg and crooked toes. It's right to make a shoe for him, but you may also need to make hobbles.  You can google "splay leg hobbles" to see how to do this, You basically tie their legs together. It only takes a couple of days and the leg growth corrects itself. But, it's SUPER important to catch it very early, with growth is at its fastest.  


Good luck! I am so glad you are trying so hard to save the baby chick!!

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