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Hatchling being weighed

Parrot Chick Weight Growth Chart

Recording a chick’s weight daily is necessary to ensure healthy growth parameters are met.

From hatchling to the developmental stage (characterized by the emergence of feathers), a 10% daily weight gain should be expected.

Hatchlings and Fledgling Parrots
Parrot chicks at two developmental stages

To keep track of weight changes, we recommend the use of the chick growth chart where the weight gain % can be noted daily. Also, the chart can be a valuable tool to help your avian veterinarian assess health status of your chick.
Chick Growth Chart

The chicks’ growth chart is also very practical to record and communicate the following:

  • presence and strength of the feeding response
  • crop motility activity
  • daily health parameters monitored
  • quantities fed & evaluation of caloric intake
  • consistency of the formula fed
  • adequacy and respect of feeding schedules
  • “plateau” of daily weight gain= preliminary stages of weaning, downsizing and firming up of the crop

Time It Right!

Chicks should be weighed every morning before feeding on an empty crop.

Weighing Parrot ChickNote: A chick that has failed to empty its’ crop in the morning, should be emptied and weighed immediately. This of course is provided you have the knowledge and experience to do. If not your avian veterinarian should be consulted immediately to seek assistance.

Parrot chick weight monitoring normal growth curve

  • 10% daily weight gain (logarithmic growth phase) for neonates (day 3 after the lag stage 0-3 days after hatch) until they reach the plateau age.
  • Plateau when feathers emerge from pin feathers.
  • 10% weight loss in total (from highest weight recorded) untill completely weaned.
  • Increase in weight thereafter should be attributed to pectoral muscle weight gain (especially if harness trained).
  • Fledglings, until juvenile age is reached should be monitored for weight control every few days.

Proper handling of the chicks

  • Pressure should never be applied to the crop, chest or abdomen. Note: the liver lies beneath the pectoral muscles that have not yet developed therefore hepatic hematoma (bruising of the liver) can result from pressure on this region of the body.
  • Fledglings instinctively develop a sense of balance. Holding the hocks and securing the body with an opposing thumb position on top of the wings and scapulars will help prevent flailing and grasping with the nails due to a sense of loss of balance.
  • The container used to weigh the chicks safely on the scale should be large enough to accommodate the size, weight, movement and activity of the particular chick as it matures. Anti-slippery mattress or substrate should be used to prevent legs from splaying.

Discover HARI:

Hagen Avicultural Research Institute