Do your chickens always run away from you? Do they not come up to you like you hear all the others do?
It's time to fix that! Here I'll tell you how I am slowly taming my chickens, and what I have learned along the way.
Step 1. Start with feeding and watering time, when you give them the daily feed and water, try and stay by it for a bit to see if they'll come close to you, if they do, just stay still. You want to gain trust first. Not so anytime you try and catch one, it runs, but once you get it it's fine. You want it to trust you and not run and still be fine. Trust me, it is not fun chasing a chicken around the yard in pajamas!
Do this until they are at ease with coming to eat, and not so like 'omigosh, what is s/he doing here!!'.
Step 2. At night if you have the time, put them in early, (30 mins. or so) and sit in the coop, not moving to grab them and letting them freely climb over and explore you as much as they want, after they get used this and are in the coop and waiting for you, do this for another week or so, picking up and holding each chicken for a few minutes, if it runs do NOT chase it. You want to keep trust, not loose it.
Step 3. Go out in the run or yard everyday for a bit and just follow the chickens around, with some treats like fruit, bread or whatever they love! Then, if any come up to you, offer a treat. Do not be intimidated if they run when you put down you hand to offer!! This is them learning that you give them treats, the crazy lady is actually not as crazy as we thought! Do this until they come running to you (or don't run) , and looking for treats. At first you can throw the treats a foot or two away from you, making sure the chickens see them, and then stay in the place without moving, working up to getting closer, until it's your hand giving the treats.
Step 4. Go out everyday and hold all or some of your chickens (depending on how many you have) for a few minutes, this involves catching them in the run or free-ranging, if they run don't keep chasing them, they need to keep your trust, once you do catch a chicken, make sure you hold it until it calms down, then pause a moment before letting it go.
Do this until you can catch them with ease.
Step 5. Now repeat each of these steps and see the difference in your chickens reactions!!
Me and my love-able shoulder chicken, Bitsy.
Me and a young pullet
A young cockerel
Me and another shoulder chicken!