Advice needed on how to round up 5 week old chicks.......

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by chris10sen, Jul 23, 2010.

  1. chris10sen

    chris10sen In the Brooder

    May 30, 2010
    I have recently started to take my 5 week old chicks outside in a chicken type tractor/play pen. The problem I am having is collecting them to bring them back inside. How do I get them without scarring them to death? I tried meal worms in my hand but they are running around like their head is cut off and don't notice the treat. When they are in the small brooder in the garage they seem friendly enough and don't completely freak out when I pick them up. Their permanent run will be done hopefully this week. But the thing is, keep in mind I am a novice, my dream was to have the chicks hanging out in their run most of the time, yet with some daily free time. But I can't imagine how am I going to get them back in the run if it isn't dark. I have 3 dogs and I don't see a day too soon that they could share the yard. So for now they are going to have to take turns. This is really stressing me and the chicks out. They love to be outside but I am starting to dread it. Any ideas?
  2. Sir Birdaholic

    Sir Birdaholic Night Knight

    [​IMG] That's why I have 3 different sized nets hanging in the barn.
  3. chickp

    chickp In the Brooder

    May 3, 2010
    Mine respond to yogurt sometimes, but two of them are smart and know what's coming.....back in the brooder. We don't let them out very much now, sadly, since they will go into their coop and run in a week. It's just too hard and traumatic to chase them! I have heard when they're older and know where they sleep it gets easier to get them back in their run/coop.
  4. math ace

    math ace Crowing

    Dec 17, 2009
    Jacksonville, FL
    I am working on training mine to come to me on a clicking sound for treats. I only feed the treats in the coop. When the girls are out "Free Ranging" , I start calling them and clicking. Then reward with a treat.

    There is NO WAY I would get most to come to me as soon as they are released to free range. However, after they have been out for a while - - - - they are willing to come check me and my treats out.

    Mine are much older than 5 weeks. At the 5 weeks age - - -I am still working on the concept that I am the "Treat" lady. I don't let my 5 week olds free range. I do have some 12 week olds who have just started free ranging with the rest of the flock and they understand the clicking and "treat" concept. They just can't figure out how to get back in the coop . . . .[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    They walk around it getting all frustrated because they can't find the door to get into the coop and treats ! ! [​IMG] [​IMG]
  5. countrychicken00

    countrychicken00 Songster

    Jul 21, 2010
    What I think you can do(this worked on my chickens.)
    is hold ether left over foods or treats and bock like a chicken
    and when they figure out whats going on and if some of them are close to you
    give THEM the treats then keep on doing it and when all the
    chickens come close to you give them the treats.
    And when you want them in your coop,bock
    and the chickens will think you have treats so they will
    come to you.
    Keep practicing. [​IMG]
  6. BeccaB00

    BeccaB00 Songster

    Jun 16, 2010
    Omg we began to have to SAME problem! [​IMG] Exept ours run free in the yard! no pen at ALL! once they got about 3 months old they got smart enough to RUN when they seen us walking toward them! and ours were TAME. I'm not sure what you can do to catch them easierr and alll but we bagan to use a net. It was ALOT easier because neither the chicks or us had to run as much. Good luck!!! [​IMG]
  7. Mrs. Feathers

    Mrs. Feathers Songster

    Apr 2, 2010
    If DH or I even put our hands near our pockets there is a frenzie of running chickens thinking the most wonderful black oil sunflower seeds may emerge. They almost seem to pout when it is a false alarm. I think I could get them to do almost anything for those BOSS!
  8. mamabigbird

    mamabigbird Songster

    Feb 11, 2010
    Vancouver Island, B.C.,
    I haven't yet had to try to catch my younguns, they are in a 8x16 mini run w/ mini coop for now but I have worried about the eventual day when the gate opens and they go out with the big girls. I'm hoping they will play follow the leader. When I walk out of my yard gate with anything in my hands they come out of the woodwork on a dead run so I just lead them to the coop run just like the Pied Piper of Hamelin Town. So I guess what I'm trying to say is lead them not chase them. If my big girls try to lag behind I drop a treat or two on the ground and keep walking. Chickens cannot sit idly by and watch other chickens get treats. They have to swarm towards any food action. Luring vs steering I say.
  9. elmo

    elmo Songster

    May 23, 2009
    I herd mine, using something long in either hand (usually a long handled litter scoop and rake, because that's what I have handy). I herd them from where they happen to be in the yard into one of our pens, then I go in and shoo them into one corner where I can pick them up individually. They got used to the drill pretty quickly because I handle each one in the morning when I put them out, and again at night when I bring them in.

    They're getting big enough to stay outdoors in the coop with the big girls, soon, but I think it's good that they've gotten so used to being handled while they're young. I did the same thing with our hens when they were chicks last summer, and now I can easily pick them up pretty much whenever I want or need to.

    Your chicks will get used to a routine and will calm down pretty quickly if you stick with it.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2010
  10. suburbanminifarm

    suburbanminifarm Songster

    Jul 29, 2009
    N.San Diego County
    Agree you need to link the feeding of treats to the "HEEERREE CHICK CHICK CHICK!" call. Or whatever call you choose. They will link the treats to you and your call after just a few times. They really are pretty trainable! Mine come in running from free ranging to the run this way.

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