Am I the only one that can't catch my chickens to pick them up?


9 Years
Aug 20, 2010
Long Island NY
I have 9 that I raised from babies in a brooder and I still am not able to pick them up. They will be 1 year in mid Sept and are all bantams (brahmas, EE's, a cochin, & a seabright). Only 1 can I actually reach out and get a quick pet, but all the others are so quick to dodge me. I read all of you guys being able to pick yours up and hold them...even your roos! My rooster and girls will come close to take treats out of my hand, but thats it.

I have I done wrong?

holy crap...we just had an earthquake!
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Mine usually take a while, feeding them helps ALOT. Make sure you dont chase them with your hand or run after them because then they will view you as a predator who feeds them. Be very gentle with them as well and dont grab them harshly. Just gently pick them up and pet them. Hope that helped
. Some birds are just skittish as well. I have a silkie that I basically raised from a chick and its still tricky to get her.

Make sure you have food though, they LOVE food xD
Sometimes I think it is related to the breed... I have found some are just more flighty than others... My silkies, Cochins, Orpingtons, Cuckoo marans and Jersey giants I can hold and pet for short periods of time... my Brown leghorns, d'Uccles, and red stars forget it!!!
When you approach them, instead of coming at them from above like a predator, reach down well under them, even coming up from behind. See if you can get them started jumping up on something tall like a trash can for treats, get them used to being right next to you, pet their backs, and then you can scoop them up from underneath. Be sure to gently hold wings down as you grasp them.
I imagine breed has a lot to do with it.
When I had LF chickens and wore my crocs in the coop they would always peck at my toes thru the holes in the crocs. My silkies rarely do it but do sometimes. I usually wear my rubber boots to keep from getting poop on my crocs since they are what I wear all the time. Good thing they clean very easily.

Although I have mostly silkies and sizzles some of them run from me when I try to pick them up or even pet them. But I have more that will follow me arould like a puppy. Some will walk around and thru my feet wanting me to pick them up. My grey roo is like a cat. He will rub himself om my ankles looking for attention. My huge black oprh only likes me. Although he stays in his pen because he's a mammoth compared to the silkies and he tries to fight with them thru the wire. I did leave his door open when I turned my back to fill his water and he took advantage of it and escaped. It took me about a half hour to catch him and when I did he just let me hold him without flopping and kicking. He just didn't want to loose his freedom. Anybody else goes near his pen and he tries to flog them and threaten to spur them thru the wire. But he coos and dances for me.
If you have the room, make a habit of taking a chair into the run and sitting each evening for a while. You can take treats to feed right by your feet, or out of hand (ouch). Once they recognize the treat cup/bowl/pan, if you sit with it in your lap they will jump up in your lap to get the treat. My girls run when I chase, but some of them like being held. Usually I pick them up where they can see me, putting one hand on each side at their wings, to avoid the inevitable flapping/scratching. Half of them hop on my lap when I sit down. They like to be petted and scratched. The roo avoids me because he has had the broom swat a few times.
I have two flocks one flock is the offspring of the other. The older flock "the parents" obviously has a roo so I really leave them alone & let the roo take care of them. The other flock has no Roo & I hatched them. I have spent a good deal of time with them & they will pretty much let me grab them with no problem. Guess, it all depends on how much time you spend with them. Their really freindly guess they think I'm their roo.
I have 3 pullets since they were like a week old. All of them tend to run away when you try to grab them, although my white pullet is the easiest to catch and I think she likes the attention. My red/brown pullet is also the same, but my small brown one hates being held, so she is very skittish... however, if I put her on my shoulder like a parrot she'll stay there and snuggle against my neck. My cockerel is pretty docile. We have to chase him around too, but he's very laid back once we get a hold of him. I can have him stay on my lap and my nieces even manage to put on t-shirts on him XD. I guess it depends on the personality of the chicken. I know that if I sit next to their coop as it starts to get dark, the pullets will try to roost on me instead of going inside their coop,

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