Chick free range time

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by JaysGirl, Jul 16, 2016.

  1. JaysGirl

    JaysGirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Ok please bare with me as I feel a little silly asking this question. My sweet babies are 2 weeks old and I have been taking them out in my small fenced patio area for playtime. My question is can you have free range time if you only have 1 acre of un fenced property, with neighbors? I would like for them especially when they are older to be able to have supervised time out of the run.
     
  2. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

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    I wouldn't recommend it. Chickens will travel a surprising distance while foraging. And your neighbors may not appreciate them trespassing. Especially when they start kicking through landscaping and pooping on things they shouldn't. And they will, they seem to know exactly where you don't want them, and will make a beeline for that spot.

    You could consider making a portable pen, either out of electric poultry netting or hardware clothe. Or if you want to get real fancy, a tractor. That way they can still enjoy the benefits of free ranging and you can enjoy neighbors that still like you :D

    Good luck!
     
  3. JaysGirl

    JaysGirl Out Of The Brooder

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    [​IMG] Thanks! I guess I had a notion in my mind that we could go out and they would stay with me and come when I call! [​IMG] Lol! I may look into a portable pen of some sort. I just want to do whatever I can to make sure they are happy!!
     
  4. TLWR

    TLWR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Try it. If they head toward your neighbors, herd them back to your yard.

    But I would not suggest unsupervised free range time without fences and having neighbors near by.
     
  5. BirdaMay

    BirdaMay Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm following this thread. I'm planning to build my chicks a tractor in addition to having their coops being mobile to roll around the property (I'm a renter), but really would like to also let them free range in the back yard some times. My yard is really super small, though, so IDK if anyone is going to get ambitions and want to take advantage of the freedom and run off or not allow me to catch and contain them.

    Right now, they just turned 4 weeks on Thursday, and as soon as I open the brooder, they come out to "free range" on the bedroom floor. :) But they always stay near me, so I assume the unfamiliarity of the back Yard will make them also stick near me.

    Also, at Home Depot, I saw some plastic fencing that looks like it would be easy to set up in a playpen formation which would be big enough for me to be in there with them as well. Could be secured with a few sticks of rebar and some PCV zip tied to the plastic fencing. That would be a really inexpensive way to start at least. I want them to be close enough to me that I can catch them.
     
  6. JaysGirl

    JaysGirl Out Of The Brooder

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    May 31, 2016
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    I only have 6 but they are fast little girls!! I guess I am just going to have to play it by ear. Maybe with my husband to help herd them and some treats[​IMG] I just didn't know if anyone in a situation similar to mine ever had there's out of the run. Thanks for the encouragement!
     
  7. JaysGirl

    JaysGirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Yea my husband said let's finish the coop before we worry about a pen/ tractor!! Lol! When I took mine in my patio area the first time they were timid and stayed fairly close to me but every day since and the more they forage, I have to practically chase them down to get them back inside! I'm hoping that is just youth and it may change as they mature. I guess we'll see[​IMG] When you get your coop/tractor done please put a pic, I'd love to see them.
     
  8. BirdaMay

    BirdaMay Out Of The Brooder

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    You can train them to come when you call by offering a favorite treat! Maybe a teeny, tiny amount of scratch (but really small, bc that stuff is really fattening) or some Dubia roaches! Dubia roaches are a great treat and very high in protein! I got some adults who are breeding and should have small roaches to feed the chicks by the time they give birth.
     
  9. plynneb

    plynneb Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a neighbor about a 1/4 mile away from me. They have at least 50 chickens on about an acre. No fencing and a couple neighbors. We see their chickens wander quite far onto the neighboring property and even into a cornfield that's across two neighbors yards. They go home to roost every night, I never see anyone herding them. I don't know how their neighbors feel abt it but, I assume they must have some agreement since I see those birds out every day.

    I need a tractor for the spring so I can put them out front where we have no fence. Our front yard coukd benefit from the chicken grooming!
     
  10. Sandy80

    Sandy80 Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm having similar dilemma.... How To let my 10 week old hens out to free range safely & when they can be supervised ( aka me[​IMG]). . They have freedom in a fenced in protected outside run 8'x 6' but I want to let them forage in the backyard sometimes. Suggestions from anyone where to get movable fencing? My local Tracter Supply & Lowes didn't have what I'm looking for & that I know is out there- as I've seen it.
     

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