Polish top hat issues
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- "Pesky Polands!"
I'm not quite sure what she means by losing them to the top hat? Yes they can get injuries to them if pecked in the right place. Did your polish just die? Any other symptoms?
What age are they when they die?
This could be a parent bird/genetic issue. What's her set up like? Is it clean? The poopy butt would concern me, a ping pong size clump sure must have been there along time.
So I decided I wanted to add a few polish to my flock. I just love them! I found a lady local who breeds them and has tons of chicks . I originally traded my aracaunna pair to her for 4 chicks. One had a splayed leg, no biggie, easy fix. Two died, one left healthy. So I told her and she said she would make it right, gave me two more, and said she had 2 left and was going out of town, so I bought them. One had a wad of poop stuck to it the size of a pong ball!!! Others looked healthy. I cleaned up the bird, gave a mix of electrolytes and probiotics. A few days later one of them died, next day was the other. I had two left...till this morning when the last two died....the lady said she has had trouble with the top hats and lost 38! What could cause it? Are they a hard breed to raise? I've never had this much trouble with chicks.....any input would be great! She's giving me 4 more in a few weeks once they hatch. Just looking for ideas to prevent death again.
The one with the poopy butt, I had a feeling I would lose that one....it was a few weeks old. Full feathered. All the others I lost were just a few days old. I had asked her if she was feeding medicated chick starter, she said yes, but I don't know for sure. I have never actually been to her house. I always meet up with her bc she lives a ways away. Other people have commented on her facebooks sale posts about losing birds too.
To be honest I don't think the problem is on your end.
It sounds like the breeder is having some type of difficulty with either hatching, genetic defect or some type of illness.
No one can tell you what to do, but if it were me, I would consider finding another source to purchase the birds from. I understand your wanting them, but sometimes it is worth the wait and even a little extra $$ to find a healthy source for birds, whether another local source or even a hatchery.
Less stress and happier life.
That sounds like a plan
If you plan on keeping them in the same place/area where you kept this last group, you may want to consider throwing away all the bedding and cleaning the brooder as well (I'm sure you already thought of this) just in case.
Keep your new one's separated/quarantined from your existing flock for 30days to observe for any signs/symptoms of illness and practice bio-security.
I do hope you find healthy happy birds. I think Top Hats are an interesting breed for sure!
I am already in my fox hole so you polish breeders fire away. All chickens bred to a frivolous or ridiculous standard for a long time are going to have health and livability issues. How do I know? I know because I went there and I have the Tee shirt to prove it. I may be remembering big but it seems to me that Polish chickens use to be standard size birds but when folks started saying, "My word, what a funny (or substitute your own adjective) looking chicken. That chicken looks like it's wearing one of Hedda Hopper's hats, I have just got to buy me one (or a few dozen) of those chickens." Polish breeders began breeding smaller birds and breeding ever closer and closer to just a few birds to both maintain and "Improve" the look that sold the best because bantam birds sell better because they look easier to keep if the person doing the keeping has never had chickens before. Hence the good DNA was gradually bred out. IMHO all that remains is a poor imitation of a chicken but there are probably some conscience breeders out there that still keep good stock
If the breeder isn't keen on you seeing their chicken plant, in my humble opinion you don't need any of their birds.
We've never had much luck with Polish. As chicks they were fragile. They would suddenly die off at any age. The 2 we had make it to adulthood had issues. One was a bantam that had a bad case of scoliosis of the neck. The other seemed to lack brain cells. She escaped the pen 3 times. Instead of keeping close to outside of the pen near the others, she would wander far off on her own. The first time she ended up in the road. Second time she was found a quarter mile away in the next town under someone's bush laying an egg. The 3rd time she went off into deep snow and that was the end of her.
They're cute, especially the frizzles, but we're not getting any more.