Failure to trhive?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by GritChicks, Jul 1, 2016.

  1. GritChicks

    GritChicks Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 1, 2016
    Greetings! I am a new chick mamma, and have had a bit of a rocky start to chicken raising. I am wondering if there are any recommendations or nutrients, (or any advice really!). to help my little buff orpington thrive. There is a bit of a backstory here, with a few setbacks early on. My little buff (named SS-Orpington), was 1 of 4 chicks mail-delivered, as I was searching for very specific breeds and was unable to find those breeds locally. SS-Orpington was the only survivor of her flock, which was heartbreaking, and the company (reputable and very supportive) assured me that was not normal and they must have had an uncharacteristically rough trip over. SS-Orpington stands for "Single Survivor Orpington."

    In order to help her feel connected to a flock early on, I was connected with a local farm that had several new chicks just hatched and around SS-Orpington's same age. SS hatched on Monday June 20, the other chicks hatched roughly 4 days prior to that (around June 16). They were all about the same size when I first introduced the flock.

    However, now the 3 local flock members (a second buff orpington, an ameraucana and a barred rock), are growing quite well, and will crowd out little SS-O from her food and water. I tried separating the group to help SS-O receive prime access to food, but she will not eat if they others are not around. That said, the others are making it quite difficult for her to get to her food.

    Little SS-Orpington appears only minimally larger than when she first arrived, and only has a single row of wing feathers and a few tail feathers. The others have most of their wing feathers and long tail feathers.

    SS-Orpington is prone to pasty butt, and I clean her once daily (this has improved, as I was cleaning her 1-2 x per day). I also apply a little vaseline and a small amount of blue food dye to the red regions of her backside, as I noticed the others would peck at her and pull out her tail feathers when she had a red butt. Since this addition, her tail feathers are coming in and her backside looks much healthier!

    She still eats, and drinks, but is just trampled on by the now MUCH larger birds, limiting her time with the food. She also appears slightly unsteady on her feet, and when she preens her wings, she will sometimes stumble to the side. She does not fall over, and does not run backwards or show other signs of neurological imbalance. Possibly weak thigh muscles or back problems from being pushed around by the others? Is this normal for a bird to be so small in their second week of life?

    Their brooder box is pictured below, to show the size difference (little SS-Orpington on the right, the larger brood to the left). She's my little underdog and I would be heartbroken to lose her, especially if there is more I can do to help her thrive. Any recommendations to help her grow and develop amidst her rapidly growing brood mates, or words of experience and advice would be greatly appreciated!


  2. realsis

    realsis Crazy for Silkies

    Jan 17, 2013
    There are a couple things that will help. One being can be purchased at tractor supply. It offers a COMPLETE list of nutrients that are more readily absorbed than other supplements. Next give a GOOD Probotic. I will attach a pic of the one i use on my babies and Adults a like. Its different because it has SEVERAL DIFFERENT BENIFICAL BACTERIA INSIDE. Not just one or two like the other brands. Its called Probios. I order mine online by searching " buy probios for poultry". Ive used this product faithfully for several years now. It provides different benifical bacteria that colonize in the gut and fight off bad bacteria. You will actually SEE a difference in her stool. It also cures pasty butt. Give to the whole flock. These two things should REALLY help her and your entire flock! The probotic will help her absorb her food better and make the most of her nutrition from that food.It will also fight bad bacteria thats introduced to her system. The extra nutrients from nutri-drench will give her that boost she needs. Hope this helps! [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016

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