ALL of my chickens have swollen crops


In the Brooder
10 Years
Jul 18, 2009
Hi, I let my chickies out in the yard late this afternoon and noticed that all of the youngsters (7 about 2 1/2 months old) were swollen on one side of the breast. My older chickens have it too, though it isn't as pronounced. I looked here and it seems that this is most likely their crops. When do I panic?

I fed them all a bunch of calamari this afternoon, and it seems to me that it's the most likely culprit. They had a lot of spinach this morning too but they've had that before. They've had calamari before too and loved it, but there was never very much of it. Today I had a lot, so everyone got some.

Is there anything I can/should do to help them get through this? They are all still acting healthy, they only look deformed.

They're stuffed full!

It should be fine- it's good for them to go to bed full.

Check them in the morning. If they look the same and haven't subsided, THAT's when you need to worry.

Do they have access to grit? I believe if they eat lots of greens(ie spinach, grass, etc.) they need free choice grit available.
The only time you should panic is if the crop is hard. If it is very full and squishy, that just means they got A LOT to eat!

I remember the first time I noticed one of my hens with a very swollen crop, I just about freaked out! But I came on here and did a search, and found out that it is normal. Their crops should be back to normal by morning
Thanks for calming me down. I have never noticed a full crop before, so to see that they were all SOO lopsided freaked me out. I didn't really even know where the crop was until I researched it here.

I probably do need to get some grit in there. They were free ranging every day until about a week ago when I finally finished their chicken run. I have been assuming that the dirt in the run would work like grit, but I guess that isn't so and I should start throwing some in there.

I'll check them in the morning and hopefully the little piggies will have recovered from their restaurant leftovers.

Thanks again! Angela
Yes indeed they're full and most probably happy as a lark. I had a similar experience not too long ago where I'd thought I'd over fed and possibly murdered all my peeps. Let them eat spaghetti (cooked). They seemed stressed, Standing straight and doing a little wiggle they were uncomfortable. At this point I remembered that I'd read here somewhere that for the 1st couple weeks it was best to just let them have the medicated chick feed. They were all fine after all was said and done. I think though that I'll heed what I read here and resist the temptation to feed "goodies" until after a couple weeks pass. Resist that temptation to make them sit back and rub their bellies and cluck "gosh I'm stuffed" as bad as you want to see it. I've tried and haven't had any luck yet.

Ooops, yours are 2.5 months old...stuff em!!

edited for ooops
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