Do runt chicks ever grow to correct size and type?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Germaine_11.20, Dec 17, 2009.

  1. Germaine_11.20

    Germaine_11.20 Songster

    Jun 6, 2009
    Hi, I hatched out some BCM's and one of them is very small. To compare it- it is a week old and only 2/3 the size of a newly hatched out chick.
    It is doing fine and seeming to thrive, but is so small. Anyone have any input on this?
  2. HEChicken

    HEChicken Crowing

    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    Hmmmm....I'll let you know? I have a runt also. She is now about 18 weeks old and still significantly smaller than her hatch-mates. However she is very dedicated to the task of eating - will keep going long after the others have finished so seems to be doing her best to catch up. I'm curious about whether her size will delay her laying. So far she is showing no redness in the face and no comb growth whatsoever so I suspect laying will be delayed. By comparison, her hatch mates of the same age have bigger combs and are starting to redden. Time will tell though. Hopefully someone else has more experience in this area.
  3. Germaine_11.20

    Germaine_11.20 Songster

    Jun 6, 2009
    Thank you!
  4. xC0000005

    xC0000005 Songster

    Nov 1, 2009
    Kirkland, WA
    I took in a couple of runts - literally half the size of their fellow chicks (and one considerably smaller than the other).
    Now (five weeks or so later) the runts are more or less indistinguishable from regular chicks. They are small compared to chicks their same age but still eat and drink quite healthily. And one appears to have a comb that is turning red. Sigh. Size wise they are growing fine, just delayed. The tiny barred rock mutt that was the smallest is now visibly taller and weighs quite a bit more than the other (which is a black cochin mix).

    Keep them fed, keep them watered, trust nature to handle the rest. Only problem with them is that the barred one hates being held. Give that it appears to be a he, I don't think that's going to be a problem long term.
  5. StupidBird

    StupidBird Songster

    Apr 8, 2009
    of my five first chicks, 2 are barred rocks. after the first few days, one lagged behind and stayed much smaller for weeks. That was february, and today I can't tell them apart. It also got pasty butt frequently at first, so got handled a lot. Neither likes being caught or held, but both turned out hen. Good luck
  6. Germaine_11.20

    Germaine_11.20 Songster

    Jun 6, 2009
    Thank you, that is good to know. I guess time will tell if it will catch up.
  7. firedove

    firedove Songster

    Nov 10, 2008
    Fitzwilliam NH
    I had a BLRW chick that was tiny compared to the others for his first 6 weeks or so before he started growing a bit quicker and by 12 weeks he was nearly caught up with the others. I sold him at that point so I don't know exactly how he turned out, but he was looking good at that point.
  8. melody123

    melody123 Songster

    Apr 10, 2009
    Sometimes runts stay small. But unless you have some banty genes in the mix, assume that they will get to full height and weight. They just may need a little extra time and love.

    I have a lovely aracauna rooster named Bob. He was the smallest in his group, and kept getting picked on my all the others. (I guess that he was just too pretty.) Somehow he kept breaking into the baby chick pen and hiding out with them. I still have no idea how he was able to lift the heavy lid on their container, get inside, and then shut the lid again.

    I moved him to live with the goats and he did just fine. He grew to be a full size rooster, and is enjoying hanging out with all the girls.
  9. fiberart57

    fiberart57 Songster

    May 31, 2009
    I had a runt, crippled Blue Andalusian. When she was about three weeks old, she and two others were much smaller than the other eight chicks. So I separated them inside the brooder with a chicken wire enclosure so they could see and interact with the others but not have to compete so much for food. Within a week, they had almost caught up with the others and by two weeks they could go out with them and they all did just fine.

    One turned out to be a rooster so he became someone's dinner, but now my Andalusian and the other, a Brahma, are full sized and very healty. My Andalusian still limps and has leg size disparity and she may never lay an egg but she's healthy and talkative.

    Don't give up on runts.

  10. Dora'smom

    Dora'smom Songster

    Dec 14, 2009
    I don't know if this is exactly what you are asking, but I bought a few chicks last May. The black Australorp wasn't thriving the way the others were, and fell far behind in growth. Once a chick is smaller than her flockmates, the problem worsens, as it is easier for the larger chicks to prevent that small one from eating. This is exactly what I saw with this BA. I gave that little chick Poly-vi-sol, daily, dripped along her beak, and she gained energy very quickly, and began pushing her way through to the food and water. She is now a beautiful pullet, normal size, and has been laying about two weeks.


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