Broken Beak, Prognosis?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by SGM, Dec 14, 2008.

  1. SGM

    SGM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2008
    Easley, SC
    I have a group of junior mottled Cochins in the brooder. Its a wire cage that makes life easier for me to clean than the plastic tubes as they got older. Anyway, I heard a squawk and went to see and didn't seen anything out of the ordinary. Later when I went and checked again I saw that one of my splash pullets has a broken beak. Its actually really far back, close to her nostrils. She had blood on the beak that had clotted and sealed over by then. The upper beak is no longer lined up from the break. Its still seems secure, not hanging barely or anything. It looks like when you bend your fingernail back really bad. Will it grow out? How does beaks work? She has been eating and drinking. Sleeps mostly with her head under her wing. But she's still doing well. I don't want to lose this pullet. I hatched out just 9 Mottled chicks from shipped eggs. 6 are black mottled and 3 are splash. I have a rooster and 2 pullets in splash mottled. So I don't want to lose her. She's a month old too.
     
  2. mypicklebird

    mypicklebird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2008
    Sonoma Co, CA
    The lower beak is on a hinge with a joint like your own jaw. The upper beak is fixed, growing out from the skull- it is made from keratin like your finger nails. The beak is not a entirely hard structure- the core has soft tissue and a blood supply. If the blood supply is intact, and the beak is not flopping around- it will probably heal. If it is crooked- it may stay that way and you will need to take care of it periodically like anyone caring for a 'scissor beak' bird. You cannot let it over grow and drive the lower beak to the side or long term she will not be able to open her beak enough to eat=== starves to death.

    If you want to give this bird the best chance- consider taking her to the vet- they might be able to sedate her, move the beak back into alignment and slap some epoxy on it to keep it straight until it heals.

    Offering her soft food only so she will not have to do as much pecking may help it heal faster. Keep her separate for a few days so you know she is eating/drinking/pooping ect, and to make sure no one pecks the bloody spot- chickens like to do that.

    Inspect the cage and remove whatever you think she did this on.
     
  3. SGM

    SGM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2008
    Easley, SC
    I've looked the cage over and can't seem to figure out what she did it on. Either way its not going to be used anymore. I'll tear it apart and use the materials elsewhere. I usually use my larger cages for brooding but didn't have one free at the time.

    No one is pecking her at all which did surprise me. I'll watch her and keep you posted on how she does.
     
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    If it's the upper beak, and "broken" up to the nares, It's probably just the "nail" part of the beak that got lifted. The cookedness is probably the nail shell being sideways. Unlikly that the beak bone actually broke, so it should grow out again.
     

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