Distressed Chick


In the Brooder
7 Years
May 1, 2012
I successfully managed to hatch out two baby chicks under my broody. One is doing great and acting normally. The second chick had a little trouble hatching I must add, the outer membrane had hardened and it got stuck (probably like that for a couple of hrs) upon finding it in the morning i dampened it with some water and it hatched naturally. Since then the chick has been constantly cheeping loudly and I returned to the nest after an hour of hatching to find it was out the nest. I returned it gently and had to go out for 4 hours. Upon returning it was yet again out the nest and cold and really distressed. Once again I returned it and it continued to cheep loudly and is restless, it must be weak but will not rest. I know it's not mumma hen as she's raised two other lots of chicks before and all were fine without any problems.

Sorry for the long story, can anyone tell me what's wrong with my baby and if there is anything I can do to help. Thanks!
Hi Moolie,

it does sound like there's something wrong, unfortunately. All you can do I suppose is keep putting the chick back under and hoping.

I had a similar issue last hatch (also broody hatched) with one chick that stood around cheeping, and wouldn't go under mum. Unfortunately it died after about 5 days. I don't know what was wrong, but it may have been blind or may have had an internal infection (or any one of about a dozen hidden conditions).

Sometimes nature knows best, with chicks that can't hatch at any rate. Sorry I can't give good advice on what else to do. I run things more like a farm than a pet home so stay tuned for other thoughts.

good luck,
Yeah thanks Erica I understand they are not pets, have them for the eggs but after going broody we thought to hatch some chicks again! The hand if mother nature is at work here do eatever happens will be for the best!
Chicky seems ok at the moment, no more incidents and has finally calmed down and is resting happily under mum. Hopefully no hidden infections are involved and it's on it's way to recovery. Mum is still sitting as there is a couple of eggs there but I want to make sure she's getting up and showing the chickies to eat and drink. The eggs should have hatched on the 18th and I'm unsure whether to remove them as there's no signs of hatching still. Any ideas?
Hi Moolie, the hen will probably only sit on them another day anyway, before she takes her brood to another spot. Hens don't like sitting on old eggs.

I would try to candle them tonight to see if there's any movement. Any torch can be used if it's got a strong beam (you just need something to focus it through).

An old timer's way was to submerge each egg in a bowl of water (about the same temp as the egg) just for a few seconds. The egg would tremble or rock if it had a live chick inside. (I'm not saying you should do this but it's in my old book.) Not sure what the hen would think of this!

Good luck,

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