How old are chicks/chickens before they start becoming easier to catch?

Donna9302

In the Brooder
5 Years
Sep 24, 2014
19
5
26
Hello, I have five 18 week chickens (3 hens, 2 cockerels) and they are all a nightmare to catch. My 3 older girls (about 40 weeks) are a lot easier to catch, they stop crouch when you get near. I was wondering if they reach an age where they are easier to catch or do I just have some naughty chickens who like keep me exercised by making me chase them around!
 

Judy

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
34,024
577
448
South Georgia
Some chickens never like to be picked up. The best way to get tame chickens is probabl to start training them as chicks. You can always wait til they are asleep and pick them up one by one off the roost; much easier than chasing them. Of course, bribery with treats at least brings them within your general vicinity.
 

cafarmgirl

Crowing
10 Years
Mar 24, 2009
5,521
610
327
California, central valley
I've had chickens here and there that didn't mind being picked up, I've had many more that really hate it. Many prey animals hate to be caught and held for obvious reasons. So to make it easier I take birds off the roost at night if I need to catch them up for some reason such as deworming etc. No chasing or cornering involved, just pick them up, do what needs doing and back to the roost.
 

Donna9302

In the Brooder
5 Years
Sep 24, 2014
19
5
26
They have all been handled a lot since they hatched, my sisters would have them in their rooms, in their dressing gowns and sat watching tv with them. Once you get hold of them they are perfectly friendly and calm. They will also come and sit on you when you are sat out with them. I don't like to leave them out when no one is around or if it's getting late as there is a fox that I have seen come into the garden. Also the neighbours get a bit funny when they squeeze through the fence. :( I'll have to try the bribery option. What is the best treat to use?
 

azygous

Enabler
11 Years
Dec 11, 2009
23,061
32,821
1,102
Colorado Rockies
Oh this is such an easy problem to solve! And it will take practically no time to start working every single time you do it.

Here's what you do to make it simple to "catch" your chickens. Start off with a small container, something that will fit in your pocket for convenience, and fill it with meal worms. In fact, if you do not have meal worms on hand, go to an aquarium or pet store and buy a small carton of them, being prepared to pay the rich price, and keep the container.

Every time you want the chickens to come to you, show them the container, then pass out some of the worms. They will very quickly associate the container with a treat they can't resist.

I keep a small carton of meal worms always handy just for this purpose. Sometimes I don't have time to grab the carton, needing to catch a chicken right away. All I have to do is cup my hand while making a motion like I'm picking some delicacy out of my hand with the other one. The chickens come running up to me even though I have nothing in my hand.

When it comes to treats, chickens are really easy to manipulate.

If you don't already raise your own meal worms, you might consider it. They're very expensive, and so easy to raise. It's something anyone can do, and it's even a lot of fun.
 

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