fattie problem, not walking to eat and drink??


13 Years
Jun 26, 2009
in Wisconsin somewhere
I got 28 cornish X and 1 is a bit smaller than the rest, about 5 days ago I noticed this one wasn't walking much.... it doesn't go to the feeder. I have to put feed and the waterer right next to it. It scarfs down the food and water. the other ones just walk all over it like it's not even there. It did hobble over to the light last night for warmth but doesn't move otherwise. I'm just wondering if I'm wasting feed keeping it alive? I don't know what is wrong with it so I don't plan on eating it. should we just end it's life? and what is the best way to do it at this age?
What you are contemplating is known as "culling". That is the removal and or destruction of animals with undesireable characteristics. That certainly describes this chick. My Grandfather described a cull as an animal not worth the last bite of feed it took.

Many people enrolled in this form think that "harvesting" is culling. Not so. A misuse of terms even if the cull is slaughtered and utilized the animal was still culled.

The chick you have that is wasting feed and will continue to do so-

Grasp it by both legs swing it and strike its head on something hard and solid.

When they get older if you need to know I will tell you about cervical dislocation.
Did you mean you got them 5 days ago, or 5 days ago you noticed this one is not acting right?

I'd do what Neil said and whack it.

If it's even as big as a quail, I'd clean and eat it. Let it rest in the fridge 24 hours before you cook it.
On really young ones, the skin is delicate, if you pluck, you'll need to scald at a much lower temp than you would, normally. I scalded some small culls in just hot tap water, about 120-125F. The feathers came right out.

He's right about the term "cull", too. I sometimes cull by butchering, sometimes by selling or giving away the birds I don't want.

But some culls would be fine for somebody else who has a different goal in mind. For example, I have some hens I want to cull because they lay long, pointy eggs, ("bullet" eggs) not suitable for hatching, so those hens will not be breeders. But for somebody who has no interest in hatching the eggs, just wants to eat them, those girls would be fine as laying hens.
I may have only had chickens for 1 year now (YAY!) but I do know what culling is and the difference between culling and butchering. I guess REALLY I just wanted to know how to go about doing so. Whaking it doesn't sound like something I can do, though! couldn't stomach it. sounds dumb when I say that cause we do all our own butchering. Just taking somethings life is hard for me (when the dumb thing is doing it's life all wrong) its supposed to live till butcher, I guess I forgot to tell him that! ANYWAYS.... we will end its pitiful life soon. so sad. I'm also going to note this experiance down, that when you have 30 birds ordered from ya to sell in july to make sure u order 35 from the hatchery. I'll get smart some day. (I'm now down to 27 birds when I should have 30)

oh and Thanks for the info on how to handle a young one. Would u seriously eat this one??
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just my inexperienced 2-cents here.. why not put him in a pen or freerange (where he will not be pecked to death) and feed him table scraps and whatever is 'free'. He will eventually make it to a size that you will be happy with and ready to eat.
I don't know if I'd eat it or not, I still don't know how old it is, or how big it is. So again, did you mean you got them 5 days ago, (now 6) or noticed 5 days ago, (now 6) that it wasn't acting right?

Didn't mean to lecture on culling, it just came up and so I commented on different reasons, that's all. It's come up in other threads, the commentary was really more for newbies that might read this thread.
they are 3.5 weeks old. I noticed 5 (now 6) days ago that it was acting weird. it is to small to "free" range (my cats could eat it for supper) it may be to weak to put it back in with my other 3.5 week olds (silkies, leghorns & RIR) but maybe it would be safer with them.... hmmmm I'll try that and see what happens that will keep it warmer also. it is half the size of the rest, I can pick up and fit this one on one hand where the rest I would have to pick up and hold with 2 hands. tell ya anything?? :O)

side thought ~ my husband complains when we have to butcher a standard bird, the rib cage is too small for his hand (the cornish x's rib cage is much bigger). Whats he gonna say if we decide to clean this peewee.

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