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wing clipping

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

I have read the posts on this forum regarding clipping wings.  What I don't see is the breed being stated. I'm sure smaller breeds are different then full size chickens?

 

I have been told that if you clip the wings and you aren't sure if it's right, and it bleeds, they will bleed to death.  I don't know when they are fully feathered or not.  I have Two RIR Roos, and a Black Australorp Roo, Barred Rock pullets, black australorp pullets, sex link pullets, silver wyandotte pullet, and RIR pullets. They are all 13 weeks old. To me they look fully grown?  I have them in an enclosed area with bird netting.  I want to let them out and free roam, but they fly. Research with these breeds say they DO fly.  I can't seem to find out, to be safe, at what age to start clipping their wings so they can be let out.  They are always losing feathers anyway.  I do live in a warm weather climate, southern New Mexico and the nights are starting to get cooler.

 

Can any please advise?

post #2 of 6
You're talking about blood feathers, if the feather is done growing in, the blood shaft will retract, if you cut a feather in the growth stage it will bleed but not to death, usually you just pull the remain piece of feather out.

Chickens can't actually fly, they are able to fly up to places and fly down, but not actual flight, your breeds are probably just a bit lighter right now but within a month they will do less as they get heavier, I wouldn't clip the wings because it can make it hard for chickens to get on roosts and up to nest boxes, plus in free ranging it can help them get away from predators to flap fly. Flighty breeds and bantams are some that can actually get somewhere by flying.

All mine free range and I don't clip wings, I think you will find them staying more on the ground as they get older.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
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Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

Okay thank you for replying.  I was given two hens a few months ago that I have started with and she showed me how to clip their wings...   I took one of the hens out to see what she would do and she ran right back into her coop area  LOL.   I just don't want them to be able to fly over a 4 foot fence so one of my dogs would get it.     I don't have any predators in the area that they are going to free range in, as everything is fenced in.  I just don't want them to get over the fence. 

 

The two hens I have now with the wings clipped, one can fly up on a 3 1/2 foot pallet to get up higher...that's why I was concerned.

 

These new hens I have had since 1 day old and they have been pretty much in their own area out there in the pen all this time.  They know the sound for food, when I call the words "chick chick chick"...in the pen they all come running.

 

If I were to clip the wings, what age would I wait for them to get to?  In spring and then let them out to free range?

 

Oh..... I thought the breeds I listed are flighty breeds?


Edited by ladyh - 9/25/15 at 11:20am
post #4 of 6
I have read that clipping only one wing is best as it throws them off balance, so maybe start with one and see, I don't see why you couldn't do it now, I tried clipping my young turkeys wings a couple of weeks ago, though I did both and they still can fly everywhere, they are around 3 months now, just look at the feathers, if they have the sheath that they grow in still on the base or if you can see it don't cut, otherwise if it was me I would just do it. Being young the feathers might grow back so check them occasionally.

Most chickens, especially as they get older won't just fly over wire fences, most need something solid to jump on and to gauge distance. Most of your breeds are dual purpose chickens, raised for eggs and meat, they tend to weigh more than egg laying breeds so they are not as flighty and hysterical about things, your sex links may be the most depending on the type of mix.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

what is the "sheath"?

post #6 of 6
It's that white cylinder that covers a newly emerging feather, best seen on adult hens during a molt, it surrounds the feather and eventually comes off or is pulled off as the bird preens. Wish I had a picture, hope I'm describing it right, your birds probably don't have any at the moment.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
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