How to Safely Catch and Treat and/or Medicate Peafowl

Discussion in 'Peafowl' started by casportpony, Jan 7, 2015.

  1. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    Here is a place for us to share how we catch and treat our peafowl.

    Last edited: Jan 7, 2015
  2. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

  3. MinxFox

    MinxFox Crowing

    Sep 16, 2010
    Pensacola, FL
    This is a pretty good explanation of how I catch peafowl and why I don't use a net:

    Basically, before when I tried using a net I would use a fish landing net like what you might find at Walmart in the fishing section. I didn't like using a net though. I found it too cumbersome and I couldn't maneuver fast enough. I am used to going to the beach and netting little minnows, but something about swinging a big net at a bird just makes me feel worried that I will hurt them.

    What I prefer to do is wear long sleeves and long pants, otherwise you will get a few peafowl scars like what I have. You may even want gloves, but I don't wear gloves. Then I use a small dog pen that is attached to my aviary as a catch pen. I usually need one other person to help me coral the bird I need into the small dog pen, then we close the door to that pen and I walk around waiting for a good opportunity to catch the bird. I like to corner them and wait for when their back is to me and I will grab them. I have seen some images of people carrying peafowl by the base of their wings. I myself think that might be kind of dangerous to do. I don't want to hurt the bird's wings. So I wrap my arms around their whole body, keeping their wings down. Then I bring the bird in close to my body to keep it from wiggling. Sometimes I have to re-catch the bird because they wiggle out of my grasp. Then, if I need to give them meds, I hold the bird close and have a second person give them medication and we use the method on the Hopkin's Livestock site for getting the birds mouth open:

    Sometimes when catching a peacock, if he has a decent sized train I grab his train and use that to help steer him the way I want him to go and help in catching him. I don't pull on his train I try to hold on gently. It works pretty well.

    I know some people catch their peafowl by the legs. I have never tried that and once I read a story about someone who tried doing that and broke their peacock's leg and he had to be put down. You have to grab both legs at once, or the bird could twist and break a leg. So I just grab their body not the legs, wings, etc. I try to give the bird some space and move in on them at the right time to avoid spooking them soo much that they ram into the fence. I think if you catch them by the legs you have to grab them above the knee joint on them as well.

    Anyways, I don't catch mine to worm them but I have had to catch ones to sell, catch them to treat them for mites, and catch them if they are sick. I don't have any photos of catching them since mainly we are so focused on catching them and being careful with them that I don't think to get any photos.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2015
    2 people like this.
  4. MinxFox

    MinxFox Crowing

    Sep 16, 2010
    Pensacola, FL
  5. Garden Peas

    Garden Peas Songster

    Sep 23, 2014
    I've heard there are different kinds of the netting itself, as well as different kinds of frames... Some sold specifically for birds. Was wondering what works, what doesn't, what's safest...???

    Also, when I have tried to catch my birds (other than getting them to walk into the cage), I have been afraid that they were going to hurt themselves in their panic to get away, and I have been worried about damaging wings when trying to catch them by hand.

    @KsKingBee , can you explain more about how & where you grab your birds, and how you keep from injuring them? @AugeredIn , can you share with us some of your expertise on catching birds that don't want to be caught?
  6. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    [​IMG]Waiting for more people to share... Gotta catch my spalding hen, and she's a real nutter compared to my other wild ones. Would also like to hear from @connerhills .

  7. new 2 pfowl

    new 2 pfowl Crowing

    Jan 13, 2012
    San Francisco, CA
    First let me say that I don't have a lot of experience with this!
    However, I could never manage to net a grown pea. I found that the net is so big that they really see it coming and panic.

    The only way I can catch them is somewhat like MinxFox describes; corral them into a small space, move slowly, place hands (tightly!) over both wings.
    This is the only picture I can find that shows a similar move, sorry:
    (image borrowed from

    Then lift them up and basically tuck them under your arm.
    When you lift them you have to make sure the feet aren't against you - they will scratch, and it gives them leverage to push off and get free.

    I will say please please don't grab their legs - too much danger of breaking or injury if you wind up only holding on to one leg and they twist away!
    This happened to Peggy before I got him and he now has such a bad limp.[​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2015
  8. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    X3 on the leg catching... I read somewhere that there is a large vein that attaches to the liver and that catching them incorrectly can cause injury to the vein and death from internal bleeding. But I don't remember where I read that, so don't quote me on it, lol.

  9. thndrdancr

    thndrdancr Songster

    Mar 30, 2007
    Belleville, Kansas
    I usually use a big dog cage, I set in the pen or the yard, depending on if they are free range a few days ahead of needing to catch them so they become accustomed to the sight of it. Then I start putting cat food in there everyday so they get used to going in there for goodies. After a few days, I then tie a rope onto cage door so I can close it when I see the rightpea go in.

    Now this does not usually work on boys with long trains, and hens are not nearly as wary of the cage. None of my boys want to go in an area where they can't turn around easily, I imagine that's instinctual. I have caught juveniles this way though many times.

    Once I have them in dog cage, I put a dark blanket over it so they don't jump and hurt themselves. Very important!!
    Then I crawl in dog cage with blanket to cover them to bring them out. Pretty soon I am gonna be at the age where I can't wriggle into dog cage tho, blah.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2015
  10. DylansMom

    DylansMom RIP 1969-2017

    Jan 10, 2014
    For me it depends on the bird, you've all seen pics of my BS Poppie, when he has a full train I will just grab ahold of that, trying to get as much in my hand as possible, I pull him backwards toward me by the train. He never pops that train loose, but some will, so this doesn't work for all of them. When I get him close enough I reach down and pin the wings to his side and lift him up, tuck him under my arm, I've never carried any of them backwards but I know people do. The wildest ones get netted, some I just corner and sooner or later they will spring up into the air to try to get away, often times I can get into position over top of them and when they spring they just kind of jump up into my arms. I've never caught by the legs, I will often hold the legs once I tuck them under my arm, keeps them from scratching me. I actually do not have any Peafowl scars, but I've had a couple shirts ripped. And there will be Poo, doesn't matter how you catch and hold that's pretty much a given, so keep it in mind.

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