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Chick with one wing.

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

 Hello all! 

  Thought I would start another thread to hopefully connect with others who have had chicks with birth defects. I decided to allow one of my hens to hatch out 3 chicks around Christmas time. Since this was my first with hatching chicks, I wasn't sure what to expect. I was quite surprised when all 3 chicks hatched. Long story short, one of the chicks was born with one wing. During the hatching the innards of the egg that was left on the chick without a wing got stuck to the hen. During the process of the hen sitting a second chick got caught up in the mess and the two chicks became tangled around one another and tangled up in the hens feathers. Since I had read (and been told by numerous folks) that you should leave the hen and chicks alone during the process, I had stopped cleaning out her box and checking the eggs about 5 days prior to the scheduled hatch date. By the time I noticed what was going on, we had a real mess. 

   I was able to separate the 2 chicks from the hen by removing her belly feathers (poor Hashbrown.. she was a trooper through the whole thing!). And through the use of warm water. I quickly rushed the chicks over in front of the heater to warm up again. One chick died from exhaustion or possibly a broken neck? The hen had been dragging the two chicks around. The 2nd chick could hardly stand, but I thought I would let nature decide the outcome and wasn't expecting the little one to live. 

  I watched as Hashbrown held her chick up to eat and drink by pressing her breast against its' back. My two roosters also worked to help show these chicks how to eat and would feed them like the hen. (<--- I didn't know roosters cared for chicks like this!!) The two chicks that survived will be 10 weeks old tomorrow. :yesss: The hen is still protective of her chicks, but now it seems that I'm running into another issue... My other 7 hens take turns picking at the poor thing. They will knock it over and start pecking at it. :hit Super sad to watch. This began about 3 weeks ago and now seems like it's almost an everyday occurrence. I'm not sure if they are trying to help her or hurt her. I'm guessing if they were trying to hurt her, they would have ended this whole ordeal quite some time ago. Between Hashbrown, a protective rooster father and myself we have been able to keep it alive. I'm hoping here in a couple more weeks that she will be large enough to fend for herself or at least be able to dish it back to them. Not really sure if there's a right answer here..

 

I have tried separating them from the flock, that doesn't work. Hashbrown flips and the chicks don't like it either. Has anyone else had this issue? What was the outcome? What did you do along the way? Also, my husband bought me some books about raising chickens and various ailments not too long ago to use as a reference. The part about raising chicks says not to leave the roosters with the chicks because they will hurt them. My roosters have been as helpful as the hens in raising their offspring. Is this common or do I just have roosters with good temperaments? I have included pictures of the chick with one wing, Hashbrown, the rooster daddy and the other chick from the hatch. Thank you in advance for the advice. 

post #2 of 8
I've never had to deal with a one winged chicklet, but wanted to say, your chicks are cuties love.gif

I leave my roos with broodies and chicks, and they do an excellent job of helping care for them. Some will even babysit, sitting on the chicks and keeping them warm while momma takes a break. I've found its the hens that are the real threat (not saying a rooster couldn't be, but mine are gentlemen), just as you have found. My broody hens kick butt, and the other girls steer clear of them and their babies. Maybe Hashbrown (adorable name!) is low in the pecking order, which is why those other girls can get away with being meanies. I do separate some of my low pecking order girls, but that's just to give them some peace and quiet while they're sitting. The other hens tend to kick them off their nest to lay there. However, once the chicks hatch and get moving, I open their cage door and let them dish out the pain for the other girls (and they do, even though they're lower in the order).

I hope everything works out in the end for you, and maybe someone who's dealt with a one winged chick will happen along now that this post has been bumped to the top again.

Good luck!
Nikki
*C'mon, get flappy!*
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Nikki
*C'mon, get flappy!*
Reply
post #3 of 8
If you don't have plenty of hidey places for the chick, you may want to add these structures. Just someplace to flee to when being picked on since chicks usually have a speed advantage.
post #4 of 8
I just wanted to say how precious it was to read how mom and dad both help out the chick. Silkies sure are special birds!♡♡♡♡ I just love how they are protecting and helping her! I hope everything goes fine for her and she grows big and strong!
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 

Jensownzoo: What kind of spaces do you think that I could build for them? Usually Hashbrown will stash them in the dog box we have for her to roost in at night, or they will hide behind the doors. Is there something else that I could improvise with? 


Edited by ramsburgchicken - 3/9/16 at 2:10pm
post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by ramsburgchicken View Post

Jensownzoo: What kind of spaces do you think that I could build for them? Usually Hashbrown will stash them in the dog box we have for her to roost in at night, or they will hide behind the doors. Is there something else that I could improvise with? 

Quite a number of things. A low table-shaped object that the chick can run under but the adult can't. A tunnel of some sort (oatmeal cannister with both ends cut, large diameter PVC pipe, etc.). Box with two chick-sized holes cut into it.

Just anything to break the chase and give the chick a safe place to rest until the adult loses interest.
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jensownzoo View Post


Quite a number of things. A low table-shaped object that the chick can run under but the adult can't. A tunnel of some sort (oatmeal cannister with both ends cut, large diameter PVC pipe, etc.). Box with two chick-sized holes cut into it.

Just anything to break the chase and give the chick a safe place to rest until the adult loses interest.

I try the oatmeal cannister. Not sure if we have any PVC around, but I'll see if we can't come up with some more. My husband found out the other day that the chicks can fit through the small holes on the gate to the roost area, whereas the larger chickens can't. He thought it was odd that one of the chicks was on the other side of the gate on morning until he saw the little guy hop back through it. :D However, not sure about the one wing chick though. Neither of us have seen her do that trick yet. 

post #8 of 8
You can look around and see what you have on hand. Lots of options, so use your creativity!
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