Impacted crop? Second (or more) Opinions

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by NashobaLosa, Mar 1, 2012.

  1. NashobaLosa

    NashobaLosa Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 24, 2012
    I lost my first chick today. I went to fill the meaties feeder and noticed one didn't run to the food like the other little piggies. He was extremely weak. So I took him inside and tried to get him warm and some sugar water to get him going a bit, but he passed in my arms. I flipped the little guy over to check and make sure there was no heart beat, and I could see his keel bone. His crop though was REALLY full even though he wouldn't have had any food since last night. Y I didn't quite feel up to cutting him open this early in the morning, but I strongly suspect he had a impacted or sour crop. It felt like pebbles, not one solid mass, but not really liquid either. I feel bad I didn't notice it before he got so sick, but I haven't given the meaties the attention the girls get. Mostly so I don't get too attached. I do wonder how long it took for him to get thin... I didn't notice it from above... Just when I flipped him over. They are about 3 weeks old. The others seem healthy though I'm gonna go inspect them one by one once it's a bit more light.
    Just wanting to see if other opinions match my own.

    3 weeks - 27 chicks - 1 loss
    I should probably feel better about my success than I do at this moment.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2012
  2. scratch'n'peck

    scratch'n'peck Overrun With Chickens

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    It does sound like it was impacted crop. I suppose chicks would die from this even faster than adult birds.
     
  3. NashobaLosa

    NashobaLosa Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 24, 2012
    Well, I just checked the rest over and they seem healthy. One seems to be lagging behind a bit in growth, not as solid as the rest but not particularly thin either. Put a temporary zip tie leg band on him so I can keep a closer eye on that one over the next week. Gonna check crops in the morning before I feed them, but I suspect this was an isolated incident.
     
  4. If you get a bird with an impacted crop, there are alternatives to culling or cutting the crop open to empty its contents. I've saved two birds this way so I'm fairly convinced it is a viable alternative.

    Get about a tablespoon of olive oil (or whatever you have on hand) and offer it to the bird. I've been amazed that they readily drink the stuff while I'm holding them. Once its all down into their crop, massage the crop from the outside with your hand. You can feel whats in there and you can tell when you've found a mass that doesn't want to break apart and this is probably what is blocking everything else from going through. It takes a while and your hand will probably get quite tired but you can get these masses broken up. When you're satisfied that there are no more masses, let the bird rest and keep it warm.

    I think the oil makes everything slippery and it all goes through. Next day your birdie will be eating with the rest of them. And depending on how long they've been crop bound, it might be pretty smelly when it finally reaches daylight!
     
  5. NashobaLosa

    NashobaLosa Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 24, 2012
    Thanks. I'll keep an eye over them over the next few days, hopefully I'll catch anything else before it's too late. The are all happy and scratching away in the grass this afternoon though. I've been removing their feed at night(cornish x piggies would eat themselves dead otherwise), so it should be easy to tell if any others have a problem in the morning. Anyone that still has a ridiculously full crop will get your treatment. Sounds like a good first line treatment that can't hurt to try.
     

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