Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Split beak

Daisy is a dirt magnet. She's an off-white Amber Star; she often dust bathes when her head is wet, and the compost/sand/woodash sticks to her making her look somewhat uncared for. I bathe her head from time to time when nature seems unable to get the clumps off.

I did this on Sunday, and noticed that her beak was split. Vertically - along its length. Bit scary. I hadn't noticed it before, but it was possible that I just hadn't seen it IYSWIM.

Looked up what to do, but the books didn't really talk about this sort of problem. I found a posting on the Practical Poultry forum where someone else had had this, and he had been advised to superglue it together.

Now, I can sort of see that this would be tempting. With a stretch of the imagination, I could see this possibly working in theory, but I don't see that it would work in practice. Even if the superglue didn't actually harm the bird (or the beak) long term, the application would be fraught with risks.

I took her to see the Vet instead.

He clipped her beak carefully, with nail clippers, but couldn't go all the way back. Bring her back in a week for another trim. In the meantime, she's going to find it difficult to be precise when pecking, so make sure all food containers are deep (no problem there, they already are). Also be aware that food can get lodged in the split and (a) make it worse and (b) rot and cause infection.

She's back out with her friends now, I'll see how she looks later.

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