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How Long to Domesticate Pullets?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by LoriE, Sep 1, 2009.

  1. LoriE

    LoriE In the Brooder

    Aug 21, 2009
    Carson City, NV
    Hi! We just got some pullets this past weekend. How long will it take to "befriend" them? They are pretty calm, but don't come running when I come to the coop or anything that I hear other chickens do. Will it affect the process since they were pullets and not chicks when we got them?

    Also, how long does it usually take for them to actually "free range"? We let them out late last afternoon, but they only went about 2 feet from run.


    Thanks for your help!

  2. Birchwood

    Birchwood In the Brooder

    Apr 17, 2009
    Southern Vermont
    Dont worry, they will be all over your yard in a matter of days. I just finished rounding mine up. They get smarter and smarter everyday. As for becoming friends, it took my pullets acouple months to feel 100% comfortable with us petting and holding them. They now come running to the porch when we come outside or to the run door if they are locked up! Enjoy, I have had so much fun learning to be a ""chicken farmer" as my husband calls me.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2009
  3. PeepsInc

    PeepsInc Songster

    Jun 18, 2009
    NY Tri State region
    I call "Chick chick chick" then throw down some sweat feed. They get use to hearing that,and come running.
  4. fiddledeedee

    fiddledeedee In the Brooder

    Aug 8, 2009
    I'm very new to this chicken keeping caper, and was concerned about this too at first. My girls were terrified of me when I first brought them home and just huddled in the back of the coop, too scared to even move for a day or two. Once they were feeling a bit more comfortable and scratching about I started bringing them treats a couple of times a day - just some greens and once a day some scratch. After a while they got so excited about the food that they would come straight over and eat from my hand. After about a week I started letting them out to free range for a short time in the late afternoon. When the sun is setting they put themselves back in the coop so I didn't have to chase them or pick them up. I encourage them to go back in with a handful of cracked corn (which they love!). Now they have decided that apparently I am harmless and get excited when they see me. They run after me when I'm in the garden and will tolerate being picked up (when they get into the veggie patch!), but I couldn't say that they enjoy it! They don't really like to be petted yet (and maybe never will) but I'm working on it!

    When they are feeling more at home they will start to venture further away from the coop when you let them out.
  5. Mine aren't afraid of me per say, but they don't want to be petted, or held. I've had most of them since they were a day old. But it suits me OK! My 17yr old son is the one that keeps grabbing them and holding them for some reason! [​IMG] I'm just happy if they go to roost every night, and lay me some eggs.

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