Can they be herded back into pen after a short foraging outing?

g-momto11

In the Brooder
8 Years
Mar 1, 2011
17
0
22
St. Bernard Parish
I will not fence-off my vegetable gardens. It would be too expensive to enclose the several patches of garden. Plus if I'm gonna buy fencing, it's gonna be for more chickens.

But, there is some great foraging to be had around my place that the tractor rig won't reach. I wonder, if I allowed them out for a couple of hours of gourmet dining and then, wanted to herd them back into the pens after their foraging, would they cooperate? If it would be a major hassle, they will just have to live a life of being permanently penned up.

I would like to let the Ameraucanas out one day, the Marans out another, and the Welsummers..... I don't have the time to let more than one-bunch-a-day out so, if it would have to be an every-day thing in order for it to become "habit", oh well!

Has anyone had success training their birds to return to the pen, regardless of time-of-day? Please give me the details of how you accomplished it?
 

clairabean

Songster
9 Years
Nov 7, 2010
1,003
9
141
Kootenays of BC!
Mine come when I call them. But they have not been enticed by a sweet veggie patch.....
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Yay Chicks!

Songster
9 Years
Apr 15, 2010
3,784
73
213
Forest Grove, OR
I haven't tried what you want to do, but my birds know the sound of BOSS in a tin can. If you train them with a sound and a well loved treat, that might work.
 

TigerLilly

I failed Chicken Math
9 Years
Jul 18, 2010
3,035
9
183
Central Florida
Yay Chicks! :

I haven't tried what you want to do, but my birds know the sound of BOSS in a tin can. If you train them with a sound and a well loved treat, that might work.

Or, like mine, they come running every time they see me step outside--they always think they're getting treats!​
 

booker81

Redneck Tech Girl
9 Years
Apr 18, 2010
1,929
102
183
Mid-MI
I let mine out and put them in when I'm done being outside (tried to let them out alone, and a hawk got one).

I just round them up, and kinda herd them to the coop. It's amusing to watch. I usually have a long stick - about 6' long - that I use to somewhat direct them - not by touching or hitting them, but to corral them along and keep them ahead of me in a group. I also put treats (BOSS) in the coop so they get yummies when they get it.

Most times, they go in great, sometimes I get a straggler that panics and runs up and down the fence. That's when I station all the kiddie toys in the yard as a funnel and drive them in through that
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tuesdays chicks

Songster
9 Years
Apr 26, 2010
1,298
4
149
stuart florida
I let mine out when I'm at home and put them back in when going out, treats are the key, they know when I go to the shed they're going to et something good, before you start letting them out train them to a sound that represents goodies and they will come running and flying from every which way to get when they are out.
 

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