Help! Half dead chick - with photo

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Achelois, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. Achelois

    Achelois Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 22, 2013
    Disaster struck this morning :( I went out to find that my broody had left the nest to care for her ravenous chicks that were wanting to explore. Overnight she'd sat or trodden on the newest hatchling and it was dead in the nest.That was the biggest blow, as that chick looked healthy when I saw it last. All the unhatched eggs were cold, including one that I'd been assisting - it had pipped the air cell but after a day not the shell, so we made a pip for it. Still nothing happened and we ended up removing the cap where it looked like it had a foot behind its head, but with the cap off I put it back under her to keep warm thinking it should be able to do its thing from there.

    Well, this morning it was completely cold and apparently dead. I flaked a little shell off and it gave a movement so slight I thought it must have been me moving it around - it was like a little corpse. But then it happened again. I rushed it inside and flaked more shell off and it was sitting in the membranes (it looked ready to hatch already in the wee hours when I checked with the veins having receded when I dampened the membranes). I immediately put it into some lukewarm water with beak out and kept it like this while I prepared a hot water bottle and an electric blanket. It slowly began making discernible breathing movements. I gave it some electrolyte and have been doing so every hour or so with it on a hot water bottle. It's been getting better during the day - it has wriggled its feet and given a loud cheep once or twice! It can now be coaxed to lick electrolyte from a spoon if I support it and now it opens its eyes now and then.

    But I'm worried about the back end where the membranes are still attached :( It doesn't look right. I've not removed or pulled on anything. The white stuff looks like faeces has been passed, maybe? But it's caught up in the membranes in a weird way. Is this a prolapse? Does it look fatal? I so want this baby to live for my 9-year-old who has had a really hard year and is devastated about the chicks that have died. We said we couldn't keep any roos but if this wee one is a roo I think it'll be hand reared and off to the local animal park. Please live, chicky!
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  2. granny hatchet

    granny hatchet Tastes like chicken Premium Member

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    im not sure but looks like it hatched too early. i wouldnt worry about water at this point it still has its yolk . i dont know what the white is called but it usually detaches during the hatch. if the chick lives it will dry and fall off. just a nest out of a rolled washcloth and a heat light about 90 degree for today. make sure it dont get too warm
     
  3. Achelois

    Achelois Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 22, 2013
    That's what I'm thinking. Well, it was an assist, anyway, so if it is it's my fault. But the other five eggs never hatched, pipped, moved or peeped. Mother hen had shunned the nest we offered and insisted on incubating these on the floor of the woodshed, in a hollow of bark rather than the straw we tried to get her to sit on, so I'm not sure how evenly they got rotated and maybe some would have hatched later if we'd had an incubator, but we didn't - she decided this morning she was well and truly done and wanted to get the surviving chicks off to forage so if we hadn't heard this one peeping and helped it would have been another cold dead egg.

    Good news! It's really come to life and is lifting up its head and stumbling around. Belly still looks a little rough but doesn't look herniated anymore. I sprayed it with a little witch hazel to clean it up. Now it's walking a bit (but still WAY too weak to put with the others) do I need to be concerned about the surface it's on? I have it on some polar fleece blankets with a hottie, but I don't want its feet to go funny. Is it just newspaper/shiny surfaces that cause spraddles?
     
  4. Achelois

    Achelois Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 22, 2013
    Are 12 eggs too many for a large hen to cover and rotate evenly, out of interest? She's a first time broody, not sure if it makes any difference.
     
  5. granny hatchet

    granny hatchet Tastes like chicken Premium Member

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    i would think 8-10 would be good, depends if she can cover them all. ya, she laid in bad spot. you can buy shelf liner its a rubber nonskid stuff with little holes in it. like gripper. and i would start with some tepid sugar water today. dip only beak not nose in. good luck
     
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  6. Achelois

    Achelois Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 22, 2013
    Bad news [​IMG] Chick died today.The electric blanket I was using failed last night. She had been doing so well but was too cool this morn and seemed weaker. I went out for a couple of hours leaving her with a hot water bottle and came back to find her dead with yolk oozing from head and tail. What have I done here? It was all going so well. Do you think she got too hot?
     
  7. granny hatchet

    granny hatchet Tastes like chicken Premium Member

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    sorry to hear. i dont think you did any thing, we just cant win them all
     

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