Crop impaction and Sour Crop

PD-Riverman

Crowing
8 Years
Jan 14, 2012
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Conway SC
I have read a lot of stories about impacted crop, sour crop and I wonder what causes this?? Am I Just Lucky?? I have been raising chickens for over 50 years----some times with 100 to 200, some times with 3 or 400, and have had over 1200 for a while. I have never had crop impaction, or sour crop that I know of--rarely loose a chicken. I wonder why?? I rarely have a chicken close to 3 years old or older either. Does it happen to the older?? If younger too, I wonder why I never have had it??? I am serious---I do not know or would not know what to do if one had it----really has got me to thinking about this???????????????
 
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abraga

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May 4, 2017
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Abingdon, va
I have read a lot of stories about impacted crop, sour crop and I wonder what causes this?? Am I Just Lucky?? I have been raising chickens for over 50 years----some times with 100 to 200, some times with 3 or 400, and have had over 1200 for a while. I have never had crop impaction, or sour crop that I know of--rarely loose a chicken. I wonder why?? I rarely have a chicken close to 3 years old or older either. Does it happen to the older?? If younger too, I wonder why I never have had it??? I am serious---I do not know or would not know what to do if one had it----really as got me to thinking about this???????????????
 

abraga

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May 4, 2017
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I don't thinks its very common in chickens. I used to raise cockatiels..and fought yeast a lot. Once they'd get yeast they'd get sour crop because the good did the crop did not digest food well and soured. However...once a lady brings me a ginormous Turkey named egor. Vet wouldn't help.he had a hughly impacted crop and it soured. It was winter..her water froze and he ate a bunch of chicken feed with no access to water. It was hard like clay. I pumped warm water and oil into him and massaged it...next thing i know i was covered in sour chickin feed when he slung his head! He survived. I think also that improper/overuse of antibotics can also cause a yeast problem. Also..if a bird eats something that blocks its crop..i would think food would sour. When my dad slaughtered turkeys some time back...we foind barbie doll shoes...plactic bottle caps..legos..etc. in thier crops!
 

Wyorp Rock

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That's a good question:)

I'll give you the "short version" of my understanding. I'll provide you will some great links as well.

Impacted crop is usually when a bird consumes foreign materials (like barbie doll shoes:lol:), long grasses/hay/bedding and can't process all of it. I would suspect they are either overzealous in their eating and/or especially with grasses possibly don't have access to proper grit. I am in the camp that commercially purchased grit is to be made available. Yes, I do know that birds can most of the time find sufficient grit in the soil, but why not place a small container for them somewhere. Grit is relatively cheap and even a small bag will last for several years depending on how many chickens you have.

If you are interested, here's a video of removal of long grasses/matter from a crop that is impacted. I always find it amazing how much stuff they pull out. Not too graphic, but there is a smidge of eeewww:sick
CROP SURGERY VIDEO

An impacted crop can become sour as well - things are not moving and bacteria/yeast begins to form (ferment).

Sour crop, slow crop, doughy crop - the crop is sluggish. A slow or sour crop, can be a symptom of underlying conditions like worms, cocci and reproductive/internal laying disorders. Basically there is inflammation and/or blockage somewhere else in the body that is delaying the processing/emptying of the crop contents - the contents then turn sour. There can be other causes of sour or slow crop as well which are in the article linked below.

@PD-Riverman After you do some reading on crop issues - I would be interested to hear what you are doing correctly that you have not had an problems. It may be your feed, lack of excess treats(?), preventative maintenance (deworming), not keeping "old birds" - but I do help people with young ones as well.

@TwoCrows has a great article that explains crop issues much better than I can and lists some of the underlying causes and treatment options.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/ar...d-sour-crops-prevention-and-treatments.67194/
 
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PD-Riverman

Crowing
8 Years
Jan 14, 2012
5,007
1,302
406
Conway SC
@PD-Riverman After you do some reading on crop issues - I would be interested to hear what you are doing correctly that you have not had an problems. It may be your feed, lack of excess treats(?), preventative maintenance (deworming), not keeping "old birds" - but I do help people with young ones as well.

I Do Not Know??? I do worm when I feel its needed. As most know that know me on here I deal with ALOT of chickens. I always sell my chickens before they get close to 3, most of the time around 2 or so yrs old.

Wait a minute---wonder if this has any thing to do with it????? I have let the chickens out to free range late in the evening once and a while---if I was there to watch over them---but never alot until a few months back. Now I have about 100 young birds(less than 5 months) every day that are let out to run around and scratch. I did let a small flock of older birds(little over a year old) out for a couple months daily until these 100 got what I felt was big enough to roam.

If these young ones start getting crop impaction etc----I will go back to hauling in greens into their pens???

No Barbie shoes--lol here----all my chickens are on the back of a farm that has never been lived on by humans----well me living there in a camper beside the lake off grid, with solar panels for 6 years but I had out grew Barbies by then---LOL

Time will tell!!
 

abraga

Songster
May 4, 2017
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Abingdon, va
In the past...when i raised cockatiels/small parrrots...i have had to go in and remove stuff...i used a tube that was blunt with holes that would suck onto the foreign object to pull it out. I have on occasion used really long thin tweezers. I never had issues with my chickens..they free ranged as well. I do notice from time to time my birds will eat wood shavings..so far...i havent had one get sick! Previously when i had isdues with yeast and/sour crops and stuff stuck in the crop it was always my exotics. I worked in the pet trade...got burned out raising parrots after 10 years. Sold my breeders and got chickens! I have to say...i so much more enjoyed the chickens. I never had chickens develope those issues...not even parasites.
 

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