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Farmette1769's Blog

by Monica Melograna-Ward

When a chick hatches from its egg, the leftover yolk sac, that acts much like a placenta, is absorbed into its body. This gives the new baby about three days worth of nutrition and hydration. Hatcheries send out chicks by mail at one day old since they are dry and fluffy by then and still have two days before they require food and water.

For the first time, we had a chick hatch without absorbing ANY of the sac into its belly. At first I thought it had a parasitic twin that had not developed, until I took a closer look. I carefully put it in with the other chicks after it and its sac had dried up a bit in the incubator. The sac dried up altogether pretty quickly, so I was able to snip it off the chick. I still assumed that this one would not survive.

About 24 hours later, that chick was still alive. It seemed to want to stay in the world, so I mixed up some electrolytes (water, sugar and a pinch of salt) in a tiny medicine cup. He perked up quickly. His behavior certainly was not that of your average chick, but he was trying.

Today I added applesauce to the mix – early in the day, It went down OK. At the grocery tonight, I purchased a jar of chicken, squash and grain baby food. YES, I bought a chick chicken. Meat is a reliable method of getting protein into their system quickly and chicken is easy to digest. Mixed with water, he took the new food mash from a big dropper. Every time he gets something down, he energizes.

He is a bit wet from his messy meal and the way his feathers are matted down around his eyes make him look like a zombie.

Chance - 2 days

The key will be for him to drink on his own and then to eat. Chicks are normally naturals at this. I had someone stop by to buy just one chick to put in with their turkey poults so they could learn how to eat and drink. Turkeys are not the brightest bulbs on the tree…

Here and there, time and energy permitting, it is worth a try to help a messed up chick to stay alive. Batteries would be an easier solution, but sugar water might just get this little chick going again. We’ll see what the morning brings.

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