What should I do to my weak chick?

Luckybaby

Chirping
5 Years
Mar 11, 2014
308
1
91
I have a chick who can open it's eyes, but usually closes it, and it has trouble standing up for several seconds. I think the mom threw it out of the nest. I broke a little piece of the inner membrane above the beak on two or three out of the 6 chicks that successfully hatch since few days.There was only little blood loss, but only one of the chicks is not acting normal. I did the same thing to other chicks about a month ago, and they are all acting normal after they hatch. I don't want to kill it. What should I do to that chick, to help it survive?

The chick is about 1 1/2 day old.

The father of the chicks is the father of the mother, but the one who incubated it is the mother of the chick's mother. When the mother of the chick's mother hatched it's first clutch last year, 9/16 hatched on day 21 and 3/16 hatched on day 22. All of the 12 chicks that hatched last year are not weak. However, the chicks who hatched this week hatched on day 23 to day 26. Only 6 out of 14 fertile eggs hatched( I candled it, so a lot where dead embryo), and 2 or 3 out of 6 look weak. The broody hen only left the eggs 15-30 minutes everyday. The nest that I used this month is made of cardboard and it have newspaper in it. Last year, the hen incubated her own eggs on sand. They also eat feed crumbles, rice and corn. Actually, their food this year is a lot healthier than their food last year.

I feed the biological mother bird wormer on the day she lays her first egg. In fact, I only started worming my chickens last month. So, could it be true, that the bird wormer residue affected the chick's negatively?
 
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chooks4life

Crowing
6 Years
Apr 8, 2013
4,905
655
296
Australia
I have a chick who can open it's eyes, but usually closes it, and it has trouble standing up for several seconds.... I don't want to kill it. What should I do to that chick, to help it survive? ...The chick is about 1 1/2 day old.
Well, the chick sounds unwell, but it is still early days. It will help if you can give a few answers:

Does it eat by itself?
Has it been eating/drinking normally?
Is it pooping normally?
Is it alone, and if so, does it show any anxiety about being alone? (If it doesn't I'd guess it's 'not long for this world').
Are you keeping it warm enough, or is it possibly too hot or cold?



The father of the chicks is the father of the mother, but the one who incubated it is the mother of the chick's mother.
Unless you're fairly sure of the genetics of this family, inbreeding should be considered as a potential cause.

The broody hen only left the eggs 15-30 minutes everyday. The nest that I used this month is made of cardboard and it have newspaper in it. Last year, the hen incubated her own eggs on sand.
Newspapers, unless specifically stating that they use nontoxic or organic ink, are often using carcinogenic chemical inks which are unsafe to use in gardens, nesting or bedding, etc. This is one possible cause of your weak clutch. Eggs absorb from their surroundings and most newspapers put out toxic fumes from the inks. Even if the inks are called 'ecofriendly' does not guarantee they are safe, you need to make sure they are nontoxic inks. Even then, what is nontoxic to us may be toxic to such a small animal.

I feed the biological mother bird wormer on the day she lays her first egg. In fact, I only started worming my chickens last month. So, could it be true, that the bird wormer residue affected the chick's negatively?
Yes, it's true that it's a risk whether you eat the egg or incubate it... If the wormer did not say specifically that it is ok to use with breeding stock, then that is very likely your issue.

If chicks like this don't pick up within approximately their first week, then they're most likely not going to make it, or if they do they will never thrive and know true health, in which case I would cull them so I don't have any issues with raising unfit birds who possibly should not be bred on with.

When you say you feed the mother wormer the day she lays her first egg, do you mean her first ever egg or the first of the clutch?

Best wishes.
 

Luckybaby

Chirping
5 Years
Mar 11, 2014
308
1
91
When the chick was about 36 hours old, it didn't eat and drink by itself. However, after I force feed it on the day it turns exactly 36 hours old it began eating and drinking water by itself. Today, it is still the smallest chick(about 33% smaller than the first born normal chick in the clutch and their age difference is just about 3 days) out of all of the chick's siblings. It might be a premature chick, but I believe that if it is a male, it is very unlikely, that it can successfully mate with the females. My alpha rooster have a brother who is born with a normal size, but when it is in adult stage, it is about 50% smaller than the alpha rooster. He wanted to mate with the pullets and hens, but they don't want it, and he can't reach it, because of his size. It might be probable that normal looking male chickens doesn't want to mate with abnormal looking female chickens, if there are a lot of normal female chickens available to mate.
 
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chooks4life

Crowing
6 Years
Apr 8, 2013
4,905
655
296
Australia
When the chick was about 36 hours old, it didn't eat and drink by itself. However, after I force feed it on the day it turns exactly 36 hours old it began eating and drinking water by itself.

It may have been due to loss of blood as a hatchling. This can result in a more sleepy chick as it's got to rest up more than one that didn't bleed during hatching, and they can be slower to start eating, but not eating or drinking before 48 hours old is normal even in a very healthy chick, in fact it's preferable in most cases as they are still getting their systems geared up to handle food etc. Most of them are still finishing absorbing their internal supply of yolk.

Today, it is still the smallest chick(about 33% smaller than the first born normal chick in the clutch and their age difference is just about 3 days) out of all of the chick's siblings.

That won't be due to the bleeding or the premature hatch, it would be genetics, I'd reckon. I've had a good few premmie chicks and none of them were stunted. But I've had stunted babies from hens or roosters with known chemical exposure, which I'd theorize is down to chemical DNA damage.

It might be a premature chick, but I believe that if it is a male, it is very unlikely, that it can successfully mate with the females. My alpha rooster have a brother who is born with a normal size, but when it is in adult stage, it is about 50% smaller than the alpha rooster. He wanted to mate with the pullets and hens, but they don't want it, and he can't reach it, because of his size.

lol, I think he's just a noob, then, because I've had the tiniest males manage to mate with the largest females without a problem. One of the males was only about 4 weeks old and he managed too. I've had males around Serama size manage to mate with hens around Jersey Giant size, so size is really not an issue, it's down to his ability to learn how to manage the size difference... That said, it does seem some males just won't learn.

It might be probable that normal looking male chickens doesn't want to mate with abnormal looking female chickens, if there are a lot of normal female chickens available to mate.

I find with mine, they prefer intelligence and high levels of instinct and health, and they don't care about the appearance anywhere near as much as those three things... Although you always get roosters and hens who prefer mates of this or that color only.

Generally, the only idea of 'normal' that a chicken has is what it was raised with, and even then most normal chooks find weird looking birds like Silkies often unreasonably attractive for some reason, possibly the instinct levels because (apparently unlike American Silkies) Aussie Silkies seem to be very instinctive on average.

It's very normal and healthy for them to pick and choose their mates, both the males and the females will be reacting to cues that tell them which bird is their best genetic match, and they favor that pairing. I let mine choose, always seems to yield better offspring than forced pairings of males and females who don't like one another.

Best wishes with your flock. Chemical exposure is unavoidable and we all end up with a dud or two, sooner or later.
 

Luckybaby

Chirping
5 Years
Mar 11, 2014
308
1
91
The brother of the alpha rooster in the flock seems to be generally more intelligent than the alpha rooster. It has better long term memory, and it can solve a problem faster. Last year, the significantly smaller rooster, is the first or one of the first chicken of the flock, who learned how to get out of the big cage that my dad built. However, the alpha rooster is the second to the last who learned or solve how to get out of the cage. It took him about 4 days to know how to get out, while the smaller rooster only solve the problem in several minutes, or 1 to 2 hours. Even though the alpha rooster knows how to get out, it still took him about 4 to 5 more days, before he can get out of the cage fast( fast means less than a minute after it is open. After he learn or solve how to get out, it still took him few hours to get out again for 3 to 4 days), while his brother can get out in less than 30 minutes on the second day, and less than a minute on the 3rd day. I think the alpha rooster is just a better fighter than it's brother. I agree that chickens has a preference. Maybe my chickens are just more attracted to good looking body, and good health, rather than high intelligence. Some people want to reproduce with a person with below average intelligence, but handsome, rather than an intellectually gifted, but below average looking person. I think chickens are the same.

After thinking about the past, I think there was a time, when it seems that both of my roosters successfully inserted squirt their sperm inside the hen's vagina, who is significantly larger than them. However, when the hen tried to incubate her eggs, none of them develop any embryo. Therefore, it didn't reach it, but it is close to it. The chances of that happening is very low, since I only saw it once for both of them since several months ago. Why are roosters of the same breed generally larger than hens of the same breed? One reason, why roosters generally have a bigger size than hens of the same breed, is that, they need it so that they can mate with them easily. A big percentage of roosters where intended to be able to successfully mate with a hen, because of their size, rather than because of their intelligence. If my rooster mate with a hen significantly smaller than him, rather than with a hen significantly bigger than him, then the eggs will be fertilized. So I think size and intelligence are the major factors. I care and maybe love the chick even though it is considered abnormal(it is significantly smaller, it probably have a way below normal intelligence than it's peers and etc.) when comparing it to it's breed. I hope that it will die of old age.
 
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