Impacted crop vs very full crop please help!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by EMcKenzie, Dec 28, 2013.

  1. EMcKenzie

    EMcKenzie New Egg

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    Jun 5, 2013
    Louisville, KY
    Hi everyone, thank you in advance for your help this is my first time with chickens and I'm still learning! I've read through most of the posts on here about impacted crops but I'm not sure if my hen Pearl has one or if she just has a what is a 'normal' full crop.

    She is an almost 7 month old silver laced Wyandotte who just started laying about two weeks ago. Since then I've noticed that she's been eating more and two days ago I noticed her crop for the first time. It was about the size of a plum and felt like those squishy, bean filled stress balls. I could feel what felt like individual pieces of their food and grit inside of it. I checked my Easter egger and her crop had the same consistency but was smaller and less tense. It was almost sunset so I let her be and came inside to read on here.

    The next morning it had decreased in size but was still present. I brought her inside so I could monitor her intake and output and gave her water and yogurt. She had a few runny droppings and some normal droppings during the time and was drinking and eating. By noon the day after I first noticed it, her crop was flat so I let her rejoin the flock. By bedtime it was again full, with the same consistency. It was not tender and she didn't seem to mind my checking it or massaging it. I let her roost with the flock again and the this morning I checked her early (5:30) before I went to work and it was again decreased in size but still present, maybe the size of peach pit (I'm working on fruit comparisons today I guess!). Besides being upset with me for waking her she was fine and had several droppings below her spot on the roost.

    I let her be and by the time I got home it was full again but she's been acting normally and still has a great appetite. I've watched her eat, drink, and take grit and oyster shell. She laid an egg both yesterday and today.

    So after a very long story my question is should I be worried that her crop is not completely emptying each evening? Reading about impacted crops on here has made me worry a lot!

    Thank you,

    Emily
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Depending on how long they sleep and how much they ate the night before, the crop may not have time to empty quite all the way overnight. This time of year especially, mine seem to really want to eat as much as they can right before bedtime, and often have really full crops when they roost. If they are eating mostly commercial processed food, their stuffed crops may feel a little softer, if they are getting alot of grains etc it may be firmer and you can usually feel the hard lumps in there. As long as the crop is mostly emptying and she is feeling/acting fine I wouldn't worry about it, I'd just keep an eye on her and be sure she has access to grit. And Welcome To BYC!
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  3. EMcKenzie

    EMcKenzie New Egg

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    Jun 5, 2013
    Louisville, KY
    Thanks!

    I've kept an eye on her, it seems to be overall a little smaller, still some food in there in the morning but much smaller. She's still laying eggs which is always good!

    I appreciate the reassurance :).
     
  4. abserbean

    abserbean Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She may just have a large or pendulous crop. My RIR's crop is always noticeable bobs side to side when she runs, and feels like a stress ball like you mentioned. It does go down, but never goes away, and it has never caused her any problems. She is a big pig, eats more than all of my other girls, so maybe that is why her crop stretched out like that. I hope it is nothing, and your girl will be fine! As long as she is eating, pooping and laying she is probably doing okay.
    [​IMG]
    This is my RIR Lucy, with her big crop!
     
  5. EMcKenzie

    EMcKenzie New Egg

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    Louisville, KY
    Hello Lucy! She's gorgeous. Here's my girl. She looks very similar. They makes me feel better. Maybe she's just a glutton after all ;)

    She finally stayed still enough for me to take a picture:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  6. abserbean

    abserbean Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She is very pretty, I love SLWs. They were a breed that I hoped to get, but we are currently out of room and not accepting anymore chickens! If only we had a little more space...... Her crop looks fairly normal to me, if she is acting appropriately than I wouldn't worry about it too much. We just give Lucy crop massages every so often to make sure it stays moving, she doesn't seem to mind!
     
  7. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    FYI. File this away. If you notice one of your flock having scant, teensy, hard poop, suspect impacted crop. If one seems to have lost interest in eating over a couple days, suspect impacted crop. If you see a crop that is huge, heavy, and hangs off to the side, suspect impacted crop. If it's rock hard, suspect impacted crop. If there's an awful smell coming from your chicken's beak, suspect impacted or sour crop.

    It's very important to take steps immediately if you suspect impacted crop. Letting it go can make it get worse, and you might then be facing a much worse condition.

    I've had huge success in treating impacted crop by squirting a couple tablespoons of olive oil into the patient's beak, making sure it goes down the throat into the crop. Once you get the oil in, massage the crop gently until you can feel the contents loosen. Keep massaging until you feel the contents break up and the crop begin to empty.

    If by chance you've misdiagnosed the condition, no harm is done since olive oil will simply pass on through, lubricating all the parts, resulting in a smooth running machine. Wait. That's a car engine. Oh well, not that much difference.
     

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