Saturday, May 9, 2009

Repairing Back Slip Claw

Fixing Inability to Perch

Occasionally a chick will have slip claw where the back claw is always pointed forward. When the chick tries to perch, it has only a club foot to balance with and is not able to properly clasp the perch.

To fix the slip claw, I use 3M brand micro pore surgical tape (if paper tape is not available you can use tape from a band aid) and mould the foot in the proper position. Use only the very smallest diameter perches in the cage to encourage the bird to learn to grip. In very severe cases, it may be necessary to start the bandaged chick in a cage with no perches for a week before it learns to perch.

As the bandage gets soiled, I remove and check how the chick is perching without the bandage. If he does well, I leave the bandage off and just keep an eye on his perching. Should he not perch correctly or revert back to not perching correctly, I will keep replacing the bandage until it is no longer necessary.

The procedure is most effective on young chicks but can even work on older birds, it just takes longer.


Anonymous said...

THANK YOU!!! I have had two chicks develop Back Slip Claw. I was afraid to put tape or any restraining "device" since I was afraid of further injury while the babe was adjusting to the encumbrance.

Linda Hogan said...

It is also a good idea to get your birds on Calcium Plus as a slip claw preventive.


Unknown said...

I have a couple of questions: I have a bird that lost half of his back toe shortly after leaving the nest. As a result, his foot is constantly slipping forward on the perch. Will he be all right for breeding next year, and is there any way to stop this slipping? Also, what are your thoughts on brother/sister matings for one generation only?

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful advice. Going to band my young chick tomorrow! Luckily only one foot affected. Thank you so much for this good advice. Marianne, South Africa

Unknown said...

Marianne again, it worked marvelously last time, now have another chick with both claws like this, and at least I have your great advise!