Two of my new Ameraucana's are suddenly lame today!


10 Years
May 30, 2009
We have a Buff rooster, 1 araucana, 1 rir, 4 barred rock and 4 nhr. They are all between 22-26 weeks (except the aracuana is 1.5 yrs). We brought home 5 Ameraucana's yesterday that are 12 weeks old. Long story short, the lady who sold them to us was suppose to be keeping them until they were 19 weeks old(so they would be bigger/stronger with the rest) and out of the blue called and said they were really growing fast, we could pick them up. I asked her at least a dozen times if she were sure they were big enough to be put with the rest and she assured me everytime that they were.

We waited until our current hens/rooster were asleep and put the others in with them quietly last night. When my husband went out this morning to let them out of the coop, he found two of the new ones lame. One is laying with both legs sticking out front and she isn't moving at all. The other is laying with one leg out front and scooting backwards when she gets scared. Otherwise they aren't moving around or eating. I didn't get documentation, but they were suppose to be vacinnated for marek's disease. They aren't showing signs of being ill, just not moving.

When I called the breeder and explained what happened, she was silent for a minute then said, I've never heard of that happening before....really?

I currently have the 5 Ameraucana's seperated, but am wondering if I should put the three healthy back in with the others and just keep the injured seperated?



Dances with Chickens
10 Years
Feb 24, 2009
Strasburg Ohio
NO! Your instincts are correct, they are too young yet. They have been roughed up by the older, larger chickens. Keep them separated until they are the same size as the adults......That is the only way to play it safe, in my humble opinion.

So sorry she misled you. I would isolate the lame ones and allow them time to rest.....they might recover.......I had a similar thing happen by accident. I accidentally left a door open to the youngster coop, and a full grown hen went in there and hurt my young cockerel I planned on using for a breeding trio. Unfortunately, the cockerel had a permanent limp from that......

Very bad advice from your seller......Shame on her!


Heavenly Grains for Hens
9 Years
Jun 8, 2010
Pacific NW- where the Douglas Firs grow
I personally would keep all 5 separated. Just in case it is an illness, not an injury. (I have no experience with lameness.)

I always advise everyone to quarantine for at least a month (even then they could be a carrier of something and you won't know until later), due to reading so many horror stories here on BYC (and hearing the old-timers of BYC say quarantine for a month).

In addition, I don't recommend merging flocks until the younger ones are 16 weeks old. This is from personal experience.
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11 Years
Jul 13, 2009
Live Oak, FL
great place to get advice.

I would seperate the lame ones from all others, seperate new from flock for at least 30 days


10 Years
May 30, 2009
Thanks for the advice. The breeder has since called me back apologizing for the trouble and offering me two more Ameraucana's in 10 weeks that will be 12 weeks old, however, it is already an hour and 15 minute drive for me so not really worth my gas. I'm going to get another large igoo dog house to seperate the two injured within the other new birds. I figured that they aren't moving so I can keep them secluded in another shelter and try to feed them for a while to see if they get better.

I do feel better knowing I wasn't crazy for thinking they were too small.


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