Bonding with our feathered friends...

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by JadedPhoenix, Feb 27, 2014.

  1. JadedPhoenix

    JadedPhoenix Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Tyro-Lexington, NC
    I know we all have our own way of bonding with our chickens so I thought it would be nice if we all shared our favorite ones.

    I just came in from my chicken run where I currently have four hens and one rooster. I've recently given them a bigger run, one where I can go in and interact with them as opposed to their old one where I was only able to do so through chicken wire. In the time that our relationship has changed, my babies have gotten more used to me and have gone from staying a comfortable distance away from me to walking right under my feet as I seed their run with oats daily. (Yes I have GREEN stuff growing in my run!! The fact that they have a 22' by 40' run and there are so few and I seed constantly helps.) They still haven't liked me reaching down to touch them, though.

    Today, I decided to get down on the ground with them and used a small shovel to dig around in the dirt. Three of my girls came in so close that I had to be careful to not hit them as I dug. They even let me pet them briefly as I found sprouts and bugs for them. I figured that to them, I was acting like a lead rooster would. Finding them little goodies as I dug around in the dirt.

    This has become my favorite way to hang out with my "Cheapies". Though it does take more time than just throwing out treats.

    So, how do you bond with your feathered friends?
     
  2. ducklingsweety

    ducklingsweety Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 21, 2013
    parkland washington
    i just like sitting down in my yard and reading a book having my hens come up to me so i can pet them as i read...
     
  3. JadedPhoenix

    JadedPhoenix Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Tyro-Lexington, NC
    I've always loved just sitting out and watching the chickens too. Back when we let some free-range, we had a few that just made laps around the house all day long. We called them our NASCAR chickens. Chicken TV is much more interesting to watch out in the yard than most of the crap on TV now a days.
     
  4. GuppyTJ

    GuppyTJ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 13, 2013
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    My Coop
    Jaded Phoenix, just wondering how old your chickens are? I ask because I find that how I bond with my chickens has changed as they grew from tiny day old chicks to full grown hens and roosters. Early on, when they were in the brooder in the house, I bonded with them by simply handling them to clean the brooder, to move them to a playpen for the day, then back into the brooder, giving them treats, introducing them to bugs I'd throw into the brooder, giving them a clump of dirt in the brooder to peck at or dust bath in, etc, etc.

    As they move outside, every morning, I get my coffee and go out to let them out of the coop. They free range all day so I let them out and watch them as I drink my coffee. I watch them, looking for any signs of illness, behavioral changes, pecking order changes, etc. I've watched my rooster grow from a juvenile bumbling around to a really good, strong in control but gentle to the hens rooster. This little flock wanders wherever they want all day and when they see me coming, they can be WAY up in the woods and they'll all come running to see if I have something good for them to eat. They crowd all around my feet excited to see what I have. At the same time, they've changed as they've grown up and matured. They rely upon themselves as a cohesive flock with the rooster in charge of the flock. Some still let me pet them but they don't hop in my lap or tolerate the petting quite the way they used to when they were little. I like seeing them grow up and be independent and self sufficient yet still accepting and comfortable with me.

    I really like the journey and watching them grow up and how my relationship with them is still so nice, yet different now than when they were tiny chicks.

    Guppy
     
  5. JadedPhoenix

    JadedPhoenix Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Tyro-Lexington, NC
    My chickens are 16 months old. Up until two months ago their run was the old trampoline. Being under the trampoline made for some difficult bondings. I did go under to clean up and some would come closer than others. Now, all four hens get under foot when I go in and the roo that I got on New Years comes within arms reach.
     

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