I can't tell them apart!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by PunkinPeep, Apr 7, 2009.

  1. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,642
    19
    229
    Mar 31, 2009
    SouthEast Texas
    I've had my chicks for a week, and i can't tell them apart at all. I have six, 4 week-old, buff orpingtons, and they all look exactly the same. My only problem with that is that i would like to, you know, look them over from time to time to make sure i notice if something's going wrong, but since i can't tell them apart, i never know who i've already checked out.

    Anybody have a way to mark them that is simple but won't hurt them?

    I did of course consider toe-nail polish and then realized they would probably peck each others' toes bloody.
     
  2. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

    7,096
    12
    261
    Sep 10, 2008
    Lakeland, FL
    You can use different colored sharpies and make a little mark on their heads. Or dye them a little with food coloring...doesn't hurt them.
     
  3. meezermom

    meezermom Out Of The Brooder

    91
    0
    39
    Jan 23, 2009
    Roy WA
    I had the same problem with mine...as they became adults a few differences showed up.

    Until then the food dye idea is a great one!

    [​IMG]
     
  4. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,642
    19
    229
    Mar 31, 2009
    SouthEast Texas
    You can use different colored sharpies and make a little mark on their heads. Or dye them a little with food coloring...doesn't hurt them.

    Do i need to be careful about what color i use?
    Won't they peck at each other if i do that?​
     
  5. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

    7,096
    12
    261
    Sep 10, 2008
    Lakeland, FL
    Quote:Do i need to be careful about what color i use?
    Won't they peck at each other if i do that?

    Mine don't usually bother with it. Even when I put leg bands on them (you can also use tiny rubber bands) they only peck at them for a minute, then find something else to move onto.
     
  6. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,119
    17
    201
    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    I'd go with the legbands from the feed store.

    With only 2 Australorps and 2 Barred Rocks, I have trouble telling them apart, also. Well, let's just say that I need to stop a moment and look at them.

    When they get older you may think that differences in combs and wattles will help ID the critters. Don't rely on that. Their combs and wattles change thru the weeks: higher/lower, larger/smaller, darker/lighter.

    Other than legbands, honestly, behavior is the best way to identify them . . . up until you've got about a dozen, I suppose [​IMG].

    Steve
     
  7. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,642
    19
    229
    Mar 31, 2009
    SouthEast Texas
    I'd go with the legbands from the feed store.

    I had no idea i could even get leg bands from the feed store! Thank you![​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 8, 2009
  8. HilltopFarm

    HilltopFarm Out Of The Brooder

    88
    0
    39
    Apr 3, 2009
    The Garden State
    How long does the food coloring last?
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by