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catching chickens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by debp, Jul 30, 2014.

  1. debp

    debp Chirping

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    Nov 20, 2013
    Durango, Colorado
    Is it dangerous to the chicken to catch them by their legs? I have 2 17-wk old roosters that I am moving between a coop and pens (for security from bear at night) daily. That means I have to catch them twice a day. So far, no mishaps, but they are pretty strong, and I worry that in their fright (they do not like being caught) they will hurt a wing or twist a leg. Even catching them in their pens is a bit tricky. I am starting to wonder if it would be safer to just keep them in the pens until their butchering date is a couple weeks. I just hate to keep them all penned up for 2 weeks, though, so if injury is unlikely, I would keep doing the move.
     
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Crossing the Road Premium Member 8 Years

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    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    Can you get a fishing net? Those are invaluable in catching chickens. I have a "chicken catcher" that looks similar to this: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B001O217OG...tw=g&hvrand=13596420338925673189&hvpone=&hvpt

    But it does grab them by the legs. I haven't experienced a leg injury yet (that I know of). The only reason I ever catch them, though, is because it's butchering day.... I'd go with the fishnet for the least traumatic way of catching them.
     
  3. SharkmanDan

    SharkmanDan Songster

    I grab them by the legs, all the time. Never an injury. I learned this, by watching experienced chicken handlers, in my area, and it does not seem to be an issue, except that the chickens don't like it, much, for the first few moments you have a hold of them. After a while, they just settle down, and relax. Maybe that takes 30-60 seconds.
    My turkeys are far stronger than the chickens, and that's the only way I can grab them to move them back to their coop.
     
  4. debp

    debp Chirping

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    Nov 20, 2013
    Durango, Colorado
    I'm not sure the fish net would be safer. It seems like you could miss and hit the target chicken or another chicken on the head. They are especially weary of anything coming over them. My grandma had one of those leg catchers; I remember using it to catch chickens. But hers was metal.
     
  5. WebbsFarm

    WebbsFarm In the Brooder

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    Jul 28, 2014
    Washington State
    For baby or younger chickens we use a butterfly net it works the best. fishing net tangles up the bird to much. we felt it wasn't really all that safe for our birds. I found it at the dollar store.

    For our older chickens we corner them & grab them by their legs.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2014
  6. debp

    debp Chirping

    209
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    Nov 20, 2013
    Durango, Colorado
    Thanks, everyone, for your experiences with chicken catching. I know catching them on the roost is easiest, but good to know others are catching by the legs and haven't had problems with that.
     
  7. WebbsFarm

    WebbsFarm In the Brooder

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    Jul 28, 2014
    Washington State
    :)
     

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