I find the meat birds tend to have a hard crop for a while after eating.... I believe it is from their habit of gorging on their food and then later trying to drink a bunch of water to flush it down. If his system was shutting down he may have eaten a lot (out of habit) and then it didn't pass through because of the pressure from the fluid build up.
The yellow fluid is usually called ascites (pronounced ah-see-tees). It is common in meat birds due to CHF but can also be found in abdominal cavities due to other health issues and it even occurs in humans. When you pull the heart you will also sometimes find the sack around the heart (pericardium) has fluid in it.
The fluid could theoretically be drained but it won't correct the underlying condition and will only buy a couple days grace.
Birds with early acute CHF often don't grow as well simply because their organ efficiency isn't what it should be so nutrient absorption is impaired. Birds that develop it later are more likely to be normal sized. Some birds are just more genetically prone to the early onset and they are the ones which just never seem to keep up.
Most show early signs which you will come to recognize as you get more used to seeing them.... poor face and comb color (I tend to notice that rather early), bulging backside with a feeling of 'drum tightness' in skin over backside once fluid build up is worse in late stages, failure to thrive (noticeably lagging behind others in weight gain) and lethargic in appearance.
If the skin showing between feathers on the back half of the bird looks sort of bluish or purple then they are declining rapidly.
DH and I got in the habit of daily evaluation of bird activity levels and color, any who had questionable evaluations were marked with a spritz of blu-kote and re-evaluated more often. We were able to rather accurately track the CHF birds and thankfully avoided all but one 'flipping' without warning.
2.b process weight is small for CX (I don't remember how old yours are) but is very understandable with an early CHF bird. I processed 2 at about that size (out of 57) because they were failing... it sucks but it is better to do it for the bird.
One of these days I'm going to give that a try... DH likes firm pillows... and goodness knows we had enough feathers for a few of them!
The are adorable, and love the names!
everyone mentions how friendly the turkey are and I can't help but think.... they will end up as pets because I just know DH will give them a name!
just remember, no wing or tailfeathers, quills to big and hard. momma made little pillows for the grand daughters, one of them picked a little hole in the corner and then when she would go to sleep she would pick a feather out and tickle her nose til she fell a sleep, momma had to keep stuffing it