Socializing Baby Chickens to get friendly Hens/Roos
The worst thing to do is have un-socialized chickens that want to peck you on site, or have friends come over for us only to say "Don't touch that chicken, he's a pecker." So that's why I want to show you how to properly socialize and care for your baby chicken before all that starts to happen. Lets get started on when you first day get your baby chicks -
Your chicks are around three days old, so like it says above, try to minimize any touch to your chicks on the first few days of arrival, as hard as it may be. This is because your chicks are in a completely new environment, and they should first get used to their surroundings before human contact.
Now you can begin to introduce yourself to your new, baby chicks. You can do this my gently placing your hand inside their box, and letting them walk around your hand. Some curious ones will even start to jump on your hand. Remember, try to have slow movements, so that they won't get scared of you.
-Day Four to Six-
Now I would start to put chick feed on my hand, and let them eat out of it. While they eat, softly talk to them. That way, they not only get used to your voice, but they also associate your voice with food. Like I said before, try to have slow movements.
-Day Seven to Eight-
Now, depending on how much they are used to you, I would begin holding them. Remember to continue to hold them under the basking light, and keep them only a few inches from the ground. PLEASE, if they are afraid of you, then continue -Day Four to Six- for a few more days.
Keep placing your hand in their box with food, softly talking to them, and sometimes holding them. And continue this for 1 week.
They should now be excited when you put your hand in there, as they look for food. By three weeks of age, I would sometimes even pop in a few small treats in my hand. Which includes Meal worms, Chicken Grit, Homemade/Organic unflavored yogurt, etc. (Look into BYC articles for more baby chick treats)
-Week Four / One Month-
As they get older, be sure to continue popping your hand in their box, talking to them, holding them, and feeding them. Sometimes, I would extend my finger out in their cage, and let them perch on me while I study or read.
You'll find that chickens can be great companions, and friends. Take many pictures, and enjoy your beautiful, baby chicks!
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