Hen with broken beak

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by bruinfan, Oct 16, 2010.

  1. bruinfan

    bruinfan Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 12, 2010
    We rescued a 1yr old RIR hen from a local. The hen was the sole survivor after some critter broke into her coop at nite. The owner said the hen is eating, but will not go in the coop anymore. I bring the bird home, now I'm looking for a little help/info. Her beak is just about 1/4 past her nostrils. Looks like she broke it trying to escape the intruder by pecking at the walls of the coop.The upper beak is curled up and back towards her nostrils. She is eating the crumble, apple sauce and yogurt that we feed her. She is alert and active and very vocal. I have a small coop that I put her in the first day and night. I let her out in the run the past two days, but the past two nights she roosts on top of the coop. The coop is enclosed inside a 6 ft chain link fence that is covered. Main concerns are: Will the beak grow back, and should I trim the curled upper beak. Should I let her roost outside or should I put her in the coop( I live in NJ and its starting to get cold at night?. Anything else I should be doing or looking out for? Any and all info is appreciated.
    p.s. I have 5 12wk old pullets so there aren't any other birds to worry about.
     
  2. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Actually it kinda sounds like she was de-beaked, unless they TOLD you she broke it in the attack, but...
     
  3. bruinfan

    bruinfan Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 12, 2010
    No it was definitely a predator inside the coop. I had to deal with the 5 year old son crying as we took away their last pet. Mom said the coop looked like a massacre. I don't know how many birds the were raising when the attack took place.
     
  4. BekahBear

    BekahBear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    some pics of her beak would be really helpful so we can give you suggestions on what you should do.
     
  5. write2caroline

    write2caroline Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think the beak will grow back - One of my barred rocks chipped her beak and now you would never know.
    Caroline
     
  6. Empathy

    Empathy Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 8, 2010
    In our personal experience their beaks have grown back over time. I think that a deformed beak (being born that way) might not, however. We take in a lot of rescues and have had two different chickens that seemed prone to broken and cracked beaks and they were Rhode Island Reds. I wonder if different breeds are just predisposed to having a "softer" beak? I honestly don't know. But we had one in particular, Juliet, who just seemed to have a "weak beak". When she came to us her beak was almost crossed (top over bottom) and seemed deformed. Not long after she was with us we noticed that part of the top and the bottom had broken off. I was worried at the time and watched her closely - It didn't bother her eating or drinking and it did indeed grow back after several weeks. But after that, every now and then a piece of her beak would crack or break off again without any good reason (by no good reason I mean that none of the other hens beaks were cracking/breaking, not pecking on cement or nails or anything...).

    I'm glad you don't have any other "big girls" right now as she won't have to deal with keeping her rank in the pecking order. It should be a while before your temps in NJ get too cold at night - so I would think it's o.k. to let her sleep outside from a "cold" standpoint - but if she's supposed to sleep in the coop then you've got to make the habit for her. Just go out after she's on top of the coop and bring her inside - you may have to do this a few nights and endure a lot of clucking protest until she gives up and gets the new habit. [​IMG].

    Best of luck to you both in getting her beak healed and her comfy enough to sleep in the coop. And hats off to you for taking in a rescue!

    Take care,
    Empathy
     
  7. bruinfan

    bruinfan Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 12, 2010
    Thanks for the replies! I will try to get a pic up tomorrow. I went out at 8pm tonite to put her in the coop, and she was already in there. I guess the 35 degrees last nite was a bit much for her liking. I was just wondering how sensitive are their beaks, because I don't want her to be in discomfort. She seems to be doing okay, it's just that she is so much more vocal than my pullets (maybe vocal from the change in coops?).
     
  8. bruinfan

    bruinfan Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 12, 2010
    I finally found my camera to post some pics of the injured bird. She continues to eat, and she is a little skittish after having her 1 week, she will come up to me when I bring her food. She is very vocal, not loud just talks almost the whole time in my presence. She has not laid an egg since I've had her but the previous owner said she was laying before the attack( she's 1 yr old). I don't know if you can see in the last pic, but her upper beak curls up and back. Should I leave it or should I clip it? Is there anything else I should be looking out for? She was attacked almost 2 weeks ago.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  9. shellybean40

    shellybean40 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't have a clue about the beak, but I think she is purty [​IMG]
     
  10. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't know if I am missing something, but beak looks like one of my chickens with hatchery beak trim who was likely a little cross billed to start? Not sure about the white around the edge at the tip, could be just wear?

    Have a few with trimmed beaks and it does not seam to cause them any trouble except maybe for picking at tough veggies.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2010

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