If you've scrolled through our photos, you may have noticed that several of our chickens have a condition called "cross beak" (aka "scissor beak") wherein their top and bottom beak do not align. This can occur due to genetics or issues during the chick's incubation period. There is no fix: you cannot "train" a beak to straighten. There are varying degrees of severity, and a chick's beak will continue to shift until they are about five months old.
Some birds with a mild crossbeak feed themselves normally, like our little Edward Scissorbeak. However, many (if not most) do require some form of special regimen. Even if they appear fine, I highly (highly!!!) encourage tracking a crossbeak's weight (especially alongside one of its siblings). If they are not growing at the same rate, they need your help, and unfortunately feathers can hide starvation all too well.
Four of our crossbeak chickens are 100% dependent and we tube-feed them 3x/day. Committing to their care is no small undertaking and one of the most time-intensive daily tasks on the farm, but they reciprocate 100-fold in pure love and joy. They get to live happy, full, healthy lives here, and I am grateful to have the determination and skill set to give them the extra care and attention that they deserve.
If you need help or information regarding crossbeak care, please reach out to us or join this Facebook group for excellent, reliable guidance and expertise. We also highly recommend purchasing Avian Health Shake from Springwater Avian Farm as a nutritional supplement for any and all chickies, CB or not.