leg issues with meaties


I'm not all fluff
12 Years
May 5, 2007
central maine
I purchased cornish rock x from welp this yr. my first time from them, not first time raising meaties. I am having a hard time with birds unable to walk. these are not fat birds, but small ones. generally about 5-6 weeks old, one leg just can't support them. I find no problem with the leg itself except maybe a callus on the foot pad of one foot. it has happened to 5 birds of 30 and when they were butchered, the bone in that leg is very red, like bruised. just the bone, not the skin or meat. feeding them chick starter then at 5- 6 weeks, changed to broiler maker. these birds just can not walk. had one last night that can't use either back leg, sits on it's rump. that one needs to go, anyone else having this problem?
(mine are kept on 1x1 wire as I have done for the last 3 yrs- only seems to affect the smaller birds, not the big ones in the lot) maybe they are getting pushed around too much? all are the same age so I have no idea what could be causing this.


10 Years
Oct 18, 2009
Sounds like the smaller ones are not getting enough nutrients. Might be they are not as aggressive at the feeder, try doubling the feeder space. You don't have to increase the amount of feed--just spread it out thinner. Add some water soluble vitamins/minerals to the water.

It may be too late for this batch but will make a world of difference for your next.

Winsor Woods

13 Years
Jun 14, 2009
Cascade Range in WA
This year I had two out of 30 that were fine one day and then not able/willing to walk the next. I'm not convinced it was leg problems though. As with yours, the legs appeared fine with no bruising etc. When a bird like that presents itself, I usually process it along with 3-4 others in a mini freezer camp session. I actually had one that I noticed yesterday and processed him today. What I've found is that every one like that this year has had lots of fluid around their hearts. The fluid is held inside the pericardium. So I think these lame birds had heart disease. If you come across any others like that, I'd take special notice of the condition of their internal organs. That might give you some insight.

BTW, the first one I had go lame was about 4-5 weeks old and yesterday's was 8.5 weeks.

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