Specific help for raising baby chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by blazraidr, Oct 8, 2012.

  1. blazraidr

    blazraidr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2012
    Hello everyone this is my first post.

    I have 3 hens, and 2 of them are broody. We put fertilised eggs under them around 2.5 weeks ago. Four of the total twelve had already begun developing previously under a friends hen. Two of those four hatched yesterday. We are expecting the other two to hatch soon, and for the other eight eggs to hatch on the weekend, since they started developing at different times.


    [​IMG]

    This one hatched first, and it's been around 21 hours since the hatch. It stays under the broody bantam. It can't stand on its legs yet, and has its wings outstretched while laying on its belly. I'm not sure if it has eaten anything or consumed any water yet. It tries to stand, but then fails and falls back down onto its belly.

    The other one hatched 18 hours ago, and it can stand on its feet. It's yellow with a black patch on the back of its head. It tries to peck at things and I'm not sure if it has consumed anything at all yet. This one stays under the light sussex / white silkie cross.

    This is my first time raising baby chicks from birth. The three grown hens we have were acquired when they were three weeks old, and much stronger.

    I'm not sure how to entirely raise them, since they are looked after by their mother hen. Is there anything I need to look for? Each of the two full grown hens have their own layer pellet mixture (mixed them with water to get a paste) and water. I'm worried for the little chick above, since it should be able to walk by now, shouldn't it?

    I need some advice on how to raise them while they are with their mother hen. The info I've read in the learning center has mostly to do with using a brooder, so it doesn't completely relate to me. Should the chicks be eating? What should I feed them? When should they be able to stand and walk on their own?
     
  2. blazraidr

    blazraidr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2012
    Could you also help me out with the bread of the one pictured above? I'm absolutely clueless
     
  3. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    [​IMG]

    You can give the chicks and the hens chick crumble to eat. They won't need food and water for the first 2-3 days. Don't give the chicks layer food. The high calcium content can damage their organs. The broody hens will be O.K. eating chick food though, so you you don't have to feed them separately. Apart from providing food and water and a safe, dry place for them to stay in, you don't have to do anything. What I do for my new chicks is mix a little Apple Cider Vinegar with their drink water. (Ratio 4-5 tablespoons to a gallon water) It help prevent pasty butt in chicks and gives them a general health boost.

    I hope you fist born will be able to get on it's feet, so to speak. I'm afraid I don't know what could be wrong with it, but it should be walking by now. Good luck!
     
  4. blazraidr

    blazraidr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2012
    Thanks a lot, I'll try and get all that done in the morning. I'll have a look again to see if can stand or not by then. They stay under their mother in the nesting box, because the hens are still sitting on eggs, so that should be pretty safe I guess.
     
  5. blazraidr

    blazraidr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2012
    Now I'm quite worried. It's morning here now, and last night another chick hatched :D
    This one is yellow all around and can stand.

    However, the first born still can't get on its feet. It still lays on its belly, and seems to struggle to move around. I feel helpless towards the poor thing, because I have no idea what to do. The other two (mind you they hatched AFTER) are strong, standing, and pecking at things. It's really worrisome. Any help is appreciated.
     
  6. blazraidr

    blazraidr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2012
    Here's a video of the chick. I'm very worried for it, I just want it to be normal.
     
  7. blazraidr

    blazraidr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2012
    One more hatched just 20 minutes ago. This one is black fur all over, with a slight white belly/under beak area. Chirping loudly, seems okay.

    I fed the first born some yogurt mixed with some scrambled eggs and a little bit of sugar. I also gave it some water with a syringe, though I wasn't sure when to stop. Then I put it back under the mother hen. It still can't stand up. My granddad said it's legs might have been trampled and broken by the mother hen, but the legs of the chick move and it does actually try to stand, but then gives up and breathes fast. After we fed it she was closing her eyes and it looked like it was sleeping. I'm scared it will die. Also, I think it might be too large to support itself. It's noticeably larger than the others that have hatched.

    How frequently should I feed it, and how many drops of water should I give at one time?
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2012
  8. blazraidr

    blazraidr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2012
    Just now she was pecking at the air and opening her beak. Then she writhed and threw herself onto her back two times. I took her out and clasped her with my hands to trap the wait and keep her warm. Then I used a syringe to give her some water. She drank it, but kept pecking at the air still. Then she started falling asleep I think, because her head tilted down, and her eyes closed. I kept giving her water, and tried to feed her some mash, but she wouldn't open her mouth. I put her back next to her mom and she was chirping loudly.

    She still can't stand up. I think I'll need to feed her and give her water manually until she can stand. Any advice anyone?
     
  9. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    I'm sorry to hear that. Such a pretty little thing too... Put food down in front of her and encourage her to eat. And a small water bowl, then dip her beak into the water to encourage her to drink by herself. As for the leg issue, i did did a quick search and found this thread:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/623754/chick-cant-walk

    Read post #8. Hopefully that'll help [​IMG] Also type "chick can't walk" or something similar in the advanced search bar and make sure your results are set on "relevance". You'll find plenty threads on the issue. Hopefully there's something there that will help you. Best of luck!
     
  10. blazraidr

    blazraidr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2012
    I had another look at the poor fellow, and I noticed that its thighs are spaced out much more than the other healthy chicks, and its legs move around freely if I try to move them. The healthy chicks have their thighs much closer towards their bodies, whereas this ones thighs are easily noticeable. Is there a possibility that it may have straddle leg?

    Also, when I place food and water in front of it and dip its beak in, it makes no effort to continue to drink. It also doesn't peck at the food, like I've seen some of the others do. I had a look and it had a little piece of excrement stuck to its cloaca, so I moistened it and pulled it off. A few minutes later it pooed, and it was runny and yellowish, with the white uric acid in semi-liquid form. I need a syringe for it to drink water, and I'm afraid that it won't be able to eat anything itself while under its carer hen.

    Should I treat it for straddle leg and place a hobble to its legs? My logic is that it might encourage the chick to stand on its legs and walk upright, strengthening its muscles etc. My current reasoning is that the chick is too big to support itself, as it is quite large compared to the other chicks. Worst case, straddle leg.
     
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