What to do?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by aggie2013, Oct 1, 2016.

  1. aggie2013

    aggie2013 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 20, 2016

    Backround first.
    I bought a dozen ameraucana eggs from a registered breeder online. First problem was the eggs were 5 days late so she added 2 for free. My hen hatched 6 of the 9 I gave her. None of the 5 I put in my bator hatched. Fast forward a week and I noticed these two have weird beaks. I looked it up and found that it is called scissor beak and its genetic. When I told the breeder of the issue she replied she knows she has a problem in that pen.
    She couldn't tell me which one of hers is throwing it. Yet she still sold me these eggs.

    So my question is. If two out of 6 have scissor beak is it worth it to keep the others for breeding?

    Also, what can I go to help these two out? They are still eating for now but it's getting worse.
  2. losttexan

    losttexan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 24, 2014
    Lubbock, TX
    I have seen others raise crossed beaks as special-need birds, but given the degree of deformity, I would cull those birds. You will never be able to breed them (if that is want you want to do), and I would have serious concerns about breeding the others (genotype isn't necessarily reflected in phenotype). Of course, you could breed your others and see what they throw, but scissor or crossed beak is a genetic deficiency that any reputable breeder would cull. If you breed and sell offspring with lurking deformities, you are no better than the woman who sold these eggs to you.
    1 person likes this.
  3. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    First of all, not a reputable breeder if they are knowingly breeding birds that carry genes for scissor beak. If they know of the problem, they should not be selling eggs or chicks from that pen until the carriers are determined and culled from the breeding group.
    You can breed the other chicks, but I would find some different blood lines to use with them.
    As for the chicks with scissor beak, they can do just fine most of the time. If it starts to effect their ability to eat, than it would be best to cull.
  4. aggie2013

    aggie2013 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 20, 2016
    Thank you for being honest with me. I wouldn't want to let these guys suffer. Or continue on with bad genetics. I will continue to raise the rest for now. I guess they will either be just part of my laying flock or my dinner one night.
  5. Chef JimmyJ

    Chef JimmyJ Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 17, 2015
    Piscataway, NJ
    Seems it would not really matter what the beak looks like as they don't chew. Look at the crap the poultry industry does...Clip off a significant portion of the beak so they don't peck each other in such close quarters. Those birds eat, drink and reach weight. Since you don't plan to breed and sell...Other than failure to thrive because of the beak. I don't see a reason to cull...JJ
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2016
  6. Jensownzoo

    Jensownzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2016
    Saint Louis, MO
    Just as an aside, scissor-beak isn't always genetic as an injury to one side of the face of a chick can affect the growth plates of the bones--if they close early or the growth is slowed on one side then you can have the same effect. Definitely seems genetic here though.

    Here's a pic of my scissor-beak cochin, Buster. He does great. I feed a fermented feed that is easy for him to scoop up and periodically grind his beak down with a Dremel since it doesn't wear normally.

  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    First, leave feedback or do whatever else you can do to let folks know about that egg seller. Shame shame shame on them.

    that said....

    Were they my birds, I'd let them be and see how they do. I'm not interested in coddling needy animals, so if they failed to thrive I'd cull them. But, the bottom one especially might be just fine. You could keep her for a layer, or sell her as a pet layer.

    I would feel okay using the normal looking chicks as breeders. Just hatch the first couple batches yourself, to be sure to check for any problems in the chicks.
  8. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Flock Master

    Nov 7, 2012
    Depends on your plans for YOUR flock. Do you intend to sell birds or chicks in the future? Do you intend to sell them as layers, or as breeders? If you intend to sell as layers, you could let the normal ones stay, and you could keep the SB in your laying flock, but ONLY if you have a way to remove any eggs they lay from your hatching program. But, going forward, you need to be honest with your future customers, letting them know that you had some SB chicks. This disclosure will most likely prevent any customers from buying hatching eggs from you. As DR says, you can hatch a few batches yourself to see if there is a genetic issue going on with the chicks that aren't expressing the SB. And, I'm also left wondering if they are truly Am's, or are they EE, since the chicks don't look similar. What color patterns did she sell you???
  9. aggie2013

    aggie2013 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 20, 2016

    Blue black and splash
  10. aggie2013

    aggie2013 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 20, 2016
    The beaks have gotten much much worse since these pictures. They are almost 2 weeks old now. The are a bit behind in size but they both have the best feathering. For now I'm letting them be.

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