How do I tame my chicks??!!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by OrpieLover31, Mar 12, 2013.

  1. OrpieLover31

    OrpieLover31 Overrun With Chickens

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    I recently got 4 baby Orpingtons! 2 Splashes and 2 Blacks. I know for sure that I got 2 boys and 2 girls. When I got them the Splashes were a little younger then a week old and the Blacks were a little older then a week old. I have had them for a week now. I am doing my best to get them more tamed! Im putting my hand in the brooder, giving them chicken treats, letting them get used to my voice. Nothing is working! When I give them chicken treats I usually poke my fingers in the brooder with the treat. They all come running. But when I have my hand in the brooder with chick food or treats they all hide in a corner. I will literally put my hand in the brooder for 20 minutes with chick food in my hand, just waiting for them to come over and eat out of my hand! But they never come over! They stay in the corner terrified! I want you advice on what to do now. All I want them to do is eat out of my hand, Im trying to pick them up or anything...
     
  2. mammat

    mammat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pick them up and hold them. They will calm down after a few minutes. I hold each of ours 2 x a day. They are 7 days old today and literally jump on my hand and lap when i open the brooder. Are your other chickens tame?
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2013
  3. OrpieLover31

    OrpieLover31 Overrun With Chickens

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    I tried that today. But they were going bonkers! I only got to hold 2 of them for 15 minutes each! But they would not calm down! They just jumped out of my hand and back in the brooder! Literally!!!
     
  4. OrpieLover31

    OrpieLover31 Overrun With Chickens

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    I just held 2 of them. They finally calmed down some, but were not calm enough to take a meal worm from me..... So I just do this 2 x a day? And how long does it take for them to start getting used to me?
     
  5. Bellatrixed

    Bellatrixed Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think it might depend on individual chicken personalities too. I haven't been trying *too* hard to tame my chicks, but I have let them peck food from my hand once in a while and talk to them a lot. Out of my 22, only about 5 are very calm and friendly and come up to me willingly. The rest hide and stare at me hatefully. [​IMG]

    When you reach in the brooder, I've found it helps to try to approach them from the side as much as possible. By this I mean they're much calmer if your hand is already down in the brooder before you start reaching for them. It's their natural instinct to be scared of anything lowering towards them from above. I've also had good results letting feed sort of roll around on my hand to catch their attention. They seem to like movement, also due to their instincts.
     
  6. OrpieLover31

    OrpieLover31 Overrun With Chickens

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    LOL! Well I guess I will try it that way for a little while then.... I dont want mine too tame... Just tame enough to eat out of my hand..
     
  7. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    Don't worry. It's not a now or never situation. I tried and tried the hold them often routine with the first batch. They would freak out and squirm and peep. Sure, they eventually give up and tolerate being held but they weren't any more enthusiastic the next time. They wouldn't even approach for food. I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong. Well, I'm pretty sure they simply had a normal fear of predators and approaching from above (the only way with the old brooder) is especially terrifying. Now, though? They run to me on sight to see if I might have a bug or something from the garden or a bit of scratch. I got there by bringing them little "treats" often. It doesn't take long for them to associate your approach with the possibility of a cricket. So, don't worry if your chicks are afraid. You don't have to train away their instincts. You can win their hearts later.
     
  8. Kilsharion

    Kilsharion Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have two groups of 'em. The first group of girls were tame as could be right from the start. Never had a problem with me picking them up even as chicks; and, now days, they follow me around when they are out foraging and I walk outside. They do their "fly-hop-run" thing to get over to me and follow me wherever I go, so long as it's not across the driveway.....they don't like the chat for some reason. They'll stand there and squawk at me like mad when I walk across the drive....pretty funny.

    The other group - I call them my Rascals. They wanted nothing to do with me. They were so irritating as chicks that three of them got named Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. Just recently (about two months later), they have taken to eating out of my hand, and the roo (he got in the mix by mistake) is finally getting to where when I pick him up, he settles pretty fast. It's taken some real patience with these six to get them to come to me. But, now, they will follow me or my husband around just sure they are going to get a handout. Dinner, the roo, has been told by my husband that he better be sweet or he will become what he's named.....not sure how much weight that threat carries; but, so far, the older he gets the more 'tame' he's becoming.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2013
  9. myfester

    myfester Chillin' With My Peeps

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    With my babies, I've done pretty much what everyone has mentioned as well as take them out and play with them...literally. If you run your index finger along a rug, tip of fingernail scraping the rug, they chase it! Just like a cat chasing a string. Usually one starts, then all get curious...next thing I know, I have a little clan chasing my fingers around. They love it and seem to look forward to the gave.
     
  10. BethRose

    BethRose Out Of The Brooder

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    My chicks are the same way. The last batch of chicks I had hated me. But now, they are over a year old, they love to be held. One jumps up and tries to get in my arms. Just keep offering them treats and holding them.
     

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