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#10211 - 03/01/09 06:46 PM Chicks missing eyes?
Lupin Offline
Bantam

Registered: 07/28/05
Posts: 52
Loc: California
Never seen this before. I had two Marans chicks hatch out that are missing an eye. Their beaks are badly crossed also, which I understand is caused by the remodeling of the skull due to the missing eye. I've had my Marans since 2005, and have done all my hatches here since then. This particular hatch was a cross of two different lines, so no inbreeding. And I've hatched many, many chicks with no such problems from these same birds.

The literature seems to suggest that this is an incubation/congenital issue, but I have at least 15 other chicks that look perfect, and all
of them--including the deformed ones--popped out of their shells like popcorn this morning. I am using a Sportsman which is not even a year old.

I had another person who hatched eggs from me say one of the chicks hatched "with its brain coming out its eye socket", which seemed bizarre, but I chalked it up to a quirk since I'd never seen anything like that. Now I'm not so sure! Any ideas? Could this be genetic? Or an environmental contaminant?

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#10212 - 03/01/09 08:36 PM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
Foehn Offline
Administrator
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/08/06
Posts: 1972
Loc: New Zealand
You can't overlook the possibility that it is a genetic issue, and if it should prove to be so, you might need to rethink the cross you are using, or run the risk of letting a serious defect loose in chooky world.

If it is just a one off, then either incubation has had a glitch, or there might be chemicals influencing the outcome of the embryo development. These things are less serious, but sometimes harder to identify.

Good luck

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#10213 - 03/02/09 09:45 AM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
Bushman Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/25/07
Posts: 1047
Loc: Wisconsin
Mutations happen. They are caused by loss of, damage to, shifts in, or alterations of the DNA. Mutations are overwhelmingly harmful, not helpful. When I once hatched chicks from eggs that got very cold, some albino chicks hatched with red eyes. They were blind, and did not live long. Interestingly enough, no observed mutation has ever actually added new, additional information to the incredibly complex genetic code found in DNA. This is just one of many reasons I am convinced that macroevolution could never have ocurred in nature. Now speciation is another story. It represents, in my view, a downward progression (reverse of evolution) from higher kinds that we like to call microevolution.
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#10214 - 03/02/09 06:16 PM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
J. Byrd Offline
Feather

Registered: 11/21/08
Posts: 26
Loc: Georgia
Interesting that it was a Marans. I have a BC Marans cockeral with vision problems. He has normal looking eyes but is nearly blind. I wonder if it's a coincidence that both birds are Marans.

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#10215 - 03/03/09 10:41 AM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
IPF Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 466
Loc: Canada
Bushman says:
"Interestingly enough, no observed mutation has ever actually added new, additional information to the incredibly complex genetic code found in DNA."
Bushman, this may be your opinion, but it is not accepted as fact among scientists. It is, however, accepted by virtually all geneticists that mutations are the ultimate source of all genetic variation. While you are certainly correct in saying that the overwhelming majority of mutations are harmful, the high selective pressure (i.e. higher survival, more offspring) that favours the infrequent but highly beneficial mutations allows them to spread quickly through a population.
Rhea Dean, if this not appropriate, I trust you'll delete both my and bushman's posts. I think this is a forum for open, science-based discussion, and don't want to see creationist dogma take over.

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#10216 - 03/03/09 04:39 PM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
Bushman Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/25/07
Posts: 1047
Loc: Wisconsin
ipf: What about YOUR dogma? Why is that acceptable? I can furnish you a list of cutting edge scientists as long as your arm that have come to realize that macro-evolution is a fairy tale for adults. I understand perfectly well how mutations cause speciation. It involves damage to, loss of, or horizontal transfers of DNA. Nothing new is added, but usually something is taken away. It's called microevolution, but it is really evolution in reverse - a downward progression if you will. How about providing just one example of a genetic mutation that has actually added new information to DNA? True science and intelligent design are not mutually exclusive, but complementary.
_________________________
Pilgrim in a foreign land and true believer.
1st John 5:11-12

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#10217 - 03/03/09 04:55 PM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
IPF Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 466
Loc: Canada
i) I don't understand the word "lucicrous". [ok, now I see you've deleted that word from your post. But it was there, so for completeness, I'll leave it here].

ii) dogma: "belief or set of beliefs held by an authority or group, which others are expected to believe without argument". This is the antithesis of science, which works on theory, followed by experiment, hypothesis testing, and conditional acceptance (or rejection).

iii) how about lactose tolerance? It is believed that all folks were originally lactose intolerant, and that a mutation on chromosome 2 eliminated the shutdown in lactase production so that milk could be used as food by humans past infancy.

iv) mutations are merely changes, not necessarily deletions. They can include reversals, single or multiple base-pair mistakes in DNA replication, insertions, or deletions.

v) "Complimentary" means "free" or "praising". Do you mean "complementary"? If so, I (and most other scientists) strongly disageee with you.

Let's stop here. I won't start any discussions of "macroeveolution" (I never have, actually, and don't think the term is useful) if you don't.

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#10218 - 03/04/09 05:36 AM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
Bushman Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/25/07
Posts: 1047
Loc: Wisconsin
Quote:
Originally posted by ipf:
[QB]
ii) dogma: "belief or set of beliefs held by an authority or group, which others are expected to believe without argument". This is the antithesis of science . . .
iii) how about lactose tolerance? It is believed that all folks . . ./QB]
The fact is, ipf, that your "religion" is secular humanism, which is based on a set of unprovable beliefs and presuppositions that those of similar mindset expect others to just accept without benefit of critical thinking. The quote above is proof enough of that. If you want to talk science, go to www.answersingenesis.org, and click on their "Get Answers" link. There you will find articles and DVDs featuring Ph.d's in quite a number of scientific disciplines that will deal with many of your objections. There is a great DVD featured there right now about new research into catastrophic plate tectonics that provides a model of how the earth was reshaped at the time of the Genesis flood. I'm sorry if you were offended by my remarks, but my worldview is every bit as valid as yours. We both have exactly the same evidence; but we each filter that evidence through different presuppositions. Have a good day my friend.
_________________________
Pilgrim in a foreign land and true believer.
1st John 5:11-12

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#10219 - 03/04/09 07:42 AM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
IPF Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 466
Loc: Canada
You asked for an example of a favourable mutation, and I provided one. Let's stop here.

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#10220 - 03/04/09 10:54 AM Re: Chicks missing eyes?
Rhea Dean Carter Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 07/24/03
Posts: 1379
Loc: Tennessee
I agree. It's time to close this thread.
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Rhea Dean

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