Does this chick need a bath?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by aart, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    This chick had a lot of gunk in it's shell when it hatched.
    It is acting just fine and has dried off completely, but where the gunk was on it's back and head has not fluffed up.
    Should I give it a bath when I go to put it in the brooder to make sure it can fluff up to stay warm?

    It hatched last night, today is day 22, it is 24 hours now since the first chick hatched, 4 have hatched out of 12, 2 pips pending.

    So I think I'll be putting the chicks in the brooder at about the 48 hour mark, hoping most that are going to will be hatched by then.

    TIA

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  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I have found baths for chicks to be terribly stressful and only do it if it is life or death- like pasty butt. As long as it is aesthetic I'd not worry until the chick is a bit older and can handle stress.
     
  3. Chickens R Us

    Chickens R Us Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My chick dried with a little shell stuck to it I gently removed the shell by holding a moist paper towel on it but it still had stuff on it like in your picture it seemed to be doing fine so I just left it. The chick eventually preened it off by herself.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Thanks! Will hold off and see if it doesn't break lose on it's own.
     
  5. Chickens R Us

    Chickens R Us Chillin' With My Peeps

    If I remember right it did take a week or a little longer. I have just started getting eggs from her, she is big, beautiful and healthy.
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  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Yeah, it looks ok. Now that it's in the brooder, I've 'preened' it a bit myself.
    Still a bit funky, but not a problem.
    A couple of the other chicks had the same thing.
    Just a newbie thing for me, I now better now. :)
     
  7. LTygress

    LTygress Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What you're seeing is perfectly natural. I have two chicks that hatched two nights ago and still look mostly like that.

    When I have large groups of chicks, or chicks under a broody hen, they fluff up faster because they rub up against other chicks, which essentially brushes the down and fluffs it. So all you're getting here is a chick who hasn't been naturally "brushed out" yet. That's all. It's not an illness, and there is nothing wrong with it. And as long as you have a heat lamp on them in the brooder, it won't affect them at all.

    Eventually they will do enough wild sleeping, tripping, tumbling, and rubbing against the side of the brooder to brush it out themselves. And if it is more than one chick, they'll also do it when they pile on top of each other to sleep at night.

    If you are absolutely adamant about fluffing them up (and I wouldn't be) then you can use a mascara brush to gently brush out the down. They sell them separate from the actual mascara at Walmart, in little blister packs of about 10 or so.
     

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