Advice on the runt of the litter

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by cukooformarans, May 11, 2011.

  1. cukooformarans

    cukooformarans Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 11 wheaten marans chicks, 2 black sumatra chicks, 2 black copper marans and one sumatra game cross that will be 6 weeks old tomorrow. We have not lost any since they hatched, and they have all been very healthy. However, one of the wheaten marans chicks is close to 1/2 or 2/3 the size of the others. This hasn't been a problem up until I tried to wean them off of the heat lamp. All of the other chicks are doing great, and seem to be happier in their new pen. However, in the mornings when I come out, the runt stands by herself looking pitiful. This happened last week and I put them all back under the larger heat lamp. She went back to normal within 30 minutes and was fine all week. However, I tried again yesterday and she was back to pitiful this morning. I put her back under the larger heat lamp (her feet were cold) (this time I only moved her back) and again she was fine almost immediately. She doesn't seem to be as well feathered as the others, but based on the coloring I am pretty sure she is a hen (I have read that roo's feather slower, but there is another one that is definitely a roo and he is fully feathered plus she is smaller than all the others.) In fact, of 11 wheaten marans, it appears based on color and size that there are 10 pullets and 1 rooster. (The 2 black copper also appear to be roosters, but I don't know how to tell on the others.)

    Has anyone else ever run into this before? Should I just leave her under the heat lamp? I actually put her in with some 2 1/2 wk old chicks so she wouldn't be lonely and they seem to be doing fine. In fact, she is about midway between the 2 1/2 wk olds and the 6 wk olds in size .... How long should it take for her to be able to join the chickens in her age group? Are some chicks just naturally that far behind?
     
  2. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have the same situation here. One is a good two weeks behind the others, but I suspect it's a roo. I think it's like kids, some grow quickly and some grow slowly. I just will make sure he is not a breeding roo:)
     
  3. GiddyMoon

    GiddyMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We had 27 chicks delivered a week ago and some are twice as big as some others. At least I have more than one runt..the runts are still in the house brooder..the larger ones moved out to the garage. I don't know what will happen with their size..time will tell. If she is not getting hurt..then I guess you are doing the right thing.
     
  4. cukooformarans

    cukooformarans Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well that's good! She doesn't seem to have any problem other than being more sensitive to temperature. The bigger chickens don't seem to treat her any differently and she doesn't seem to treat the smaller chicks she's in with now poorly, either. She eats, drinks, and poops well, and she is just as lively as the others as long as she is in the brooder. It just seemed strange to me.
     
  5. earnhardtlvr

    earnhardtlvr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a runt light brahma. She is about 1/2 the size of her sisters. I had to take her out and give her some TLC for a couple days...fed her and let her drink what she wanted about every hour or two. After 2-3 days she got her strength back and has been fine. I just keep an extra eye on her when I check them now. I say as long as she is healthy I would keep her with the smaller ones as long as she doesn't start picking on them. [​IMG]
     
  6. pixiedouglas

    pixiedouglas Chillin' With My Peeps

    I noticed some of my chicks that are the same breed/age always one is smaller than the other. We have big red and little red. Big buff and little buff. It's even more pronounced now with my two buffs. The bigger one has shaped up to be our head hen and she's noticably bigger than the rest of the flock and I'd say her sister is probably 2/3 her size maybe less. They both seem perfectly healthy just some grow faster or maybe eat better due to pecking order. Would it be a problem for your smaller girl to stay with the younger chicks? Do you plan to introduce the younger chicks to the older chicks at some point?
     
  7. cukooformarans

    cukooformarans Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's no problem for her to stay with them a while. I don't know what we'll do with the younger chicks. We were originally going to have a separate pen for the RIR b/c they are DH's favorite (along with white leghorns.) But now we don't know what we've got. They will probably be given away or sold as mixed when they get older or eaten.[​IMG] But that is a while away. It's a relief to know we're not the only ones with such a pronounced runt and that she can still turn out fine!!! Thanks so much everybody!
     
  8. GiddyMoon

    GiddyMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We had to separate them becuase we had one chick that kept acting injured. I posted about her, I have checked her feet, legs, hocks..whenever she walks she actually waddles and she chirps a lot. Well, we also had some really fast growing leghorns that would start stampedes and I think this is how she got hurt. So we put all the flighty birds and leghorns in the garage and left the tiny / another docile one with her. I don't know what else to do for her and each day I wake up expecting to see her gone but she is a fighter...time will tell..but I have some with full wing feathers in one week, when stretched are 6" high..like chicks on steroids.....she still looks like she is maybe a few days old...we will see.. [​IMG]
     
  9. cukooformarans

    cukooformarans Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Awww! I hope she recovers now that they are separated. Poor thing!![​IMG]
     
  10. GiddyMoon

    GiddyMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Me too..she is the only one that is like this in the batch..I still have not been able to find out what breed she is..and she is so sweet. [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     

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