Newly hatched chick, looks way up & then flops over onto back??


9 Years
May 12, 2010
Hudson, MA
Chick (salmon fav) just hatched overnight, keeps looking way way up, like its head is resting on its back, & then it falls over onto its back. Flips back onto its feet & does it again. Is this wry neck??? It is still in the bator since other eggs are still hatching out.
they can be so flimsy the First day or so especially if they were a drop early .. Often looking dead at times.. I have had a few I was sure werent going to make it as they flopped weird wouldnt get up seemed so distressed and 8 hours later they were perfect. Hatching takes so much out of them. I hope shes just exhausted .
IDK...this is a behavior I have never seen before in newly hatched chicks. I'm gonna set up the brooder & get her out of the bator so I can monitor her/him more closely.
Blueberrychickens and Lrkel -- sounds like that chick is "stargazing", it's a condition usually caused by a lack of Thiamine (B1) in the parents' diet. I can't provide dosage amounts but we corrected it by IMMEDIATELY giving the affected chick Vitamin B1, Vitamin E and very very small amounts of Selenium. We gave it to the chick twice orally (crushed pills and mixed a little with water, gave it by dropper) and then put the same vitamin mix in the water for a week.

The condition can also be genetic, esp. in Silkies.

Our stargazer chick will be 1 year in August. She never had another episode (looking up and flipping over) since Day 2. Act fast, and you might be able to correct this imbalance in her system. After one week, I'd put the usual vitamin/electrolyte mix in their water to make sure she's getting enough vitamins.

Going forward, DO NOT feed her medicated food. It contains Amprolium is a Thiamine blocker which prevents the chick from absorbing Vitamin B1 which cocci needs to thrive.
Thank you so much for the info. I had already run out to get electrolyte/vitamin solution. Gonna try that.
One more question, how much do they need to drink of the sav-a-chick solution and how long does it take to get better? I hate making them drink. I always feel like I'm going to accidentally make them aspirate and die. frustrating!
We are just starting day three of Poly-vi-sol w/out iron and electrolyte water. I've been making a mash out of crumbles or yolk and the electrolyte water. I think I may be seeing some very slight improvements, but it's hard to tell. The chick has been chirping a lot and trying to get onto it's belly. It does spend more brief moments on it's belly before it topples over again. I'll give it some more time. At this point it is vigorous and wants to eat. Keeping my fingers crossed.

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