Cider vine­gar will help with sour crop

Country Smallholding - - Moulting -

QI have a chicken with long­stand­ing sour crop and I have been told that I can mas­sage and empty it. I’m not sure how to do this, though. Is it pos­si­ble?

VIC­TO­RIA ROBERTS SAYS:

I have heard that some peo­ple hold an af­fected chicken up­side down to empty the con­tents of the crop. This can be fa­tal since the tra­chea in hens does not have an epiglot­tis, so there is an open air tube into which crop con­tents can be breathed with a hen in that po­si­tion. In­hala­tional pneu­mo­nia is usu­ally a killer, so please do not do this. If you are us­ing cider vine­gar, the crop should not get sour in the first place, but the dose rate for cur­ing sour crop has to be acid enough to kill off the yeasts caus­ing the sour­ness, but not so acid that it up­sets the hen(s)’ in­testines. If you use a high dose rate of 100ml:500ml this should do it, but keep an eye on the health and drop­ping con­sis­tency as well. Us­ing cider vine­gar one week a month at the lower dose rate of 50ml:500ml should pre­vent fur­ther crop prob­lems. The af­fected crop can get rather saggy. This is be­cause the smooth mus­cle in the crop (not un­der con­scious con­trol) gets over­stretched and can ben­e­fit from a ‘crop bra’ be­ing tem­po­rar­ily put on the af­fected chicken to al­low the smooth mus­cle to re­cover its elas­tic­ity. Ve­trap ban­dage works well if it is not put on too tightly.

If a chicken owner uses cider vine­gar the crop should not get sour

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