Handling and socialising


May 18, 2015
Im a complete newbie my 3 chicks are nearly 2 weeks old and the breeder i got them from said to handle them daily so ive been getting them every day.. I get them out and kinda wrap them up in a towel while im walking to couch then let them walk around on me and settle in for a snooze perched on my arm but getting thrm back into the brooder they get all jumpy and i try and bundle them back into the towel but 3 at once is difficult then they jump off my lap and and onto the floor its just very stressful experience.. Any tips would be greatly appreciated i cant get thrm out 1 on 1 as the single one just calls at the top of there voice so need a way i can get thrm out all 3 together without it being stressful
Do you have a coop and run set up for them yet? Moving them into the coop would solve a lot of your problems and the chicks would be much happier. It's not written in scripture you need to brood indoors in a small box.

To get an idea of what chicks' lives are like in a small confining brooder and what it does to their behavior, read through my article, linked below this post, on outdoor brooding.

Meanwhile, while you're getting a coop ready for your chicks, start taking them on outdoor field trips and letting them romp in a temporary pen. You can climb in there with them, sit on the ground, and let them climb on you. It's much safer than the way you've been doing it.

Have the carrier you use to transport them right there on the ground, and they will go back inside when they get chilled. You won't need to chase them down to bring them back indoors.

But moving them outdoors as soon as you can will be a lot better for them and make for much more friendlier and self confident chicks.
No coop yet that's next weekends job.. Anyway if i moved them to thr coop ow anyways i would have no way of getting a heat source out there for them its winter here in Australia currently
I usually just take one or two chicks out at a time. That way it's easier to put them back up.
separating them from eachother by removing one at a time, or leavingone behind, causes needless stress. why not just handle them in the brooder, within sight of each other? or just leave them alone...
I started out handling my first flock. They hated it and it didn't help them get used to me. They became much friendlier when I started sitting down next to them and placing treats on my hands instead. With my subsequent flocks, I offered the treats they liked the most only on my hands. They would eat the treats and soon would be climbing on my lap, perching on my arms, napping on my shoulders. You can get some individual birds to tolerate and even like handling with time and patience, but their primary instinct is to panic when grabbed and held. Predators do that before they eat birds.
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i would set up a little temporary barrier around a spot on the floor so you can sit with them and they can come to you for treats rather than being caught all the time. I find that just undoes the trust you are trying to build up.

And I agree with poodle chick. We did exactly the same thing. The first lot we caught and handled never got as tame as the second batch we let come to us By just sitting with them.
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