Identifying different chickens in the same Flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Lancaster KY, Nov 14, 2013.

  1. Lancaster KY

    Lancaster KY Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 7, 2013
    The easiest way I have found to identify each and every bird in my flock is to use Zip Ties. The main reason I chose zip ties is that they are very cheap. They are also available in many different colors. I personally would stay away from the striped multi colored ones as well as the magenta and other weird colors. Stick to the basic colors, white, black, green, blue, red, yellow. I went with Yellow, Red, Green and Blue for my flock. There are also many different sizes of Zip Ties to choose from and here again i went for the least expensive ones that I could find and those were 4 inch Ties which are plenty long enough to go around any chickens leg. I do not put these ties on any young birds, the birds will soon out grow the tie and the Zip Tie will become a part of the bird. If you have a small flock you can change the Zip Ties every week or so to keep up with the birds expanding leg but that's to much work for me. When I need to mark chicks I use a toe punch, It's Fast easy and does the job. Once the chicks grow up I will band them with Zip Ties simply because I can identify each bird at a distance. Leave the Zip Ties loose !!!! replace them every year, or they will rot and fall off.

    The zip ties are not just thrown on the birds in any random order, they must be put on with a lot of organization and record keeping then becomes a easy task for each bird. This is how my system works.

    1. Single Zip tie identifier
    Always Start with the chickens Left leg. I do this because we read from left to right. A chicken in my flock with the color green zip tie on it's left leg is simply referred to as Left green. A chicken with a green zip tie on it's Right leg is called Right green.

    2.Two Zip tie identifier
    A chicken with a green band on his left leg and a red one on his right leg would be referred to as my green red chicken. The first color always being the left leg and the later color being the right leg. You could put two bands on the same leg but I have found that when I did that, I couldn't remember when I got back to the house which leg the bands were on. So for me I find my system better.

    3. Three Zip tie Identifier
    To use three Zip ties just like before I always start with the left leg. lets say we put a yellow Zip tie on the left leg and a red one on the right and green one on the left. This would be my yellow, green, red chicken. or my green, yellow, red chicken. The first two colors refer to the left leg and the third color refers to the right leg. Now it is important to say that it is very possible to duplicate colors and end up with two chickens with the same colors on the same leg. so be very careful when setting up your system so you don't have repeating colors. as in green yellow red chicken and yellow green red chicken they both would be the same chicken in my system but if used on two different chickens you would not be able to tell them apart. . In the chart at the bottom of the page i have eliminated all recurring colors and I use this chart to know what new Id to use. In the three Zip tie system I will always have two Zip ties on the left leg and one on the right.. I never have one Zip tie on the left leg and two on the right. it's just easier to remember three colors rather than which leg which color is on.

    4. Four Zip tie Identifier
    The Four zip tie part of the system works pretty much just like the 3 Zip tie part of the system. Always start with the left leg. So my chicken known as yellow yellow, red blue has two yellows bands on his left leg and a red Zip tie and a blue Zip tie on his right leg. The first two colors always referring to the left leg and the third and forth colors referring to the right leg.

    I know where every chicken came from and its history. I can breed for egg color, I know which chickens have the best looking off springs. I know how old each bird is. AND BEST OF ALL my grandson knows which birds are his without me having to guess at it.

    This chart show's all the color combinations without repeating the color pattern on more than one bird. Four colors and two legs will identify up to 164 different birds.

    Bird # left leg left leg right leg right leg

    1 yellow
    2 red
    3 green
    4 blue
    5 yellow
    6 red
    7 green
    8 blue
    9 yellow yellow
    10 yellow red
    11 yellow green
    12 yellow blue
    13 red yellow
    14 red red
    15 red green
    16 red blue
    17 green yellow
    18 green red
    19 green green
    20 green blue
    21 blue yellow
    22 blue red
    23 blue green
    24 blue blue
    25 yellow yellow yellow
    26 yellow yellow red
    27 yellow yellow green
    28 yellow yellow blue
    29 yellow red yellow
    30 yellow red red
    31 yellow red green
    32 yellow red blue
    33 yellow green yellow
    34 yellow green red
    35 yellow green green
    36 yellow green blue
    37 yellow blue yellow
    38 yellow blue red
    39 yellow blue green
    40 yellow blue blue
    41 red red yellow
    42 red red red
    43 red red green
    44 red red blue
    45 red green yellow
    46 red green red
    47 red green green
    48 red green blue
    49 red blue yellow
    50 red blue red
    51 red blue green
    52 red blue blue
    53 green green yellow
    54 green green red
    55 green green green
    56 green green blue
    57 green blue yellow
    58 green blue red
    59 green blue green
    60 green blue blue
    61 blue blue yellow
    62 blue blue red
    63 blue blue green
    64 blue blue blue
    65 yellow yellow yellow yellow
    66 yellow yellow yellow red
    67 yellow yellow yellow green
    68 yellow yellow yellow blue
    69 yellow yellow red red
    70 yellow yellow red green
    71 yellow yellow red blue
    72 yellow yellow green green
    73 yellow yellow green blue
    74 yellow yellow blue blue
    75 yellow red yellow yellow
    76 yellow red yellow red
    77 yellow red yellow green
    78 yellow red yellow blue
    79 yellow red red red
    80 yellow red red green
    81 yellow red red blue
    82 yellow red green green
    83 yellow red green blue
    84 yellow red blue blue
    85 yellow green yellow yellow
    86 yellow green yellow red
    87 yellow green yellow green
    88 yellow green yellow blue
    89 yellow green red red
    90 yellow green red green
    91 yellow green red blue
    92 yellow green green green
    93 yellow green green blue
    94 yellow green blue blue
    95 yellow blue yellow yellow
    96 yellow blue yellow red
    97 yellow blue yellow green
    98 yellow blue yellow blue
    99 yellow blue red red
    100 yellow blue red green
    101 yellow blue red blue
    102 yellow blue green green
    103 yellow blue green blue
    104 yellow blue blue blue
    105 red red yellow yellow
    106 red red yellow red
    107 red red yellow green
    108 red red yellow blue
    109 red red red red
    110 red red red green
    111 red red red blue
    112 red red green green
    113 red red green blue
    114 red red blue blue
    115 red green yellow yellow
    116 red green yellow red
    117 red green yellow green
    118 red green yellow blue
    119 red green red red
    120 red green red green
    121 red green red blue
    122 red green green green
    123 red green green blue
    124 red green blue blue
    125 red blue yellow yellow
    126 red blue yellow red
    127 red blue yellow green
    128 red blue yellow blue
    129 red blue red red
    130 red blue red green
    131 red blue red blue
    132 red blue green green
    133 red blue green blue
    134 red blue blue blue
    135 green green yellow yellow
    136 green green yellow red
    137 green green yellow green
    138 green green yellow blue
    139 green green red red
    140 green green red green
    141 green green red blue
    142 green green green green
    143 green green green blue
    144 green green blue blue
    145 green blue yellow yellow
    146 green blue yellow red
    147 green blue yellow green
    148 green blue yellow blue
    149 green blue red red
    150 green blue red green
    151 green blue red blue
    152 green blue green green
    153 green blue green blue
    154 green blue blue blue
    155 blue blue yellow yellow
    156 blue blue yellow red
    157 blue blue yellow green
    158 blue blue yellow blue
    159 blue blue red red
    160 blue blue red green
    161 blue blue red blue
    162 blue blue green green
    163 blue blue green blue
    164 blue blue blue blue
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2013
    2 people like this.
  2. kuulgrl

    kuulgrl Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 9, 2013
    Central Michigan
    Awesome! Thanks for making less work for the rest of us. ;-)
  3. lalaland

    lalaland Overrun With Chickens

    Sep 26, 2008
    Pine County MN
    wow lancaster, that is a fantastic first post! welcome to byc.

    that is quite a system, and so nice of you to put all that detail in it.
    thank you!
  4. Lancaster KY

    Lancaster KY Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 7, 2013
    You are so welcome !!!! It doesn't take money to be wise.
  5. Lancaster KY

    Lancaster KY Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 7, 2013
    And thats a wonderful welcome you just gave me. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
  6. ll

    ll Chillin' With My Peeps

    [​IMG]wow, awesome!

    [​IMG]for the 1st indeed!

    welcome to byc! [​IMG]
  7. Lancaster KY

    Lancaster KY Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 7, 2013
    LOL I fell so welcome here. wait till you see my ccop, its an original for sure. Can i post video here?
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Yes you can post pics and video here.......but you might have to wait until you have I think it's 10 posts.
    Can't wait to see them.

    Thanks for the sequencing...I cut and pasted into right into a spread sheet to save it!

    Where do you buy your zip ties?
  9. Lancaster KY

    Lancaster KY Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 7, 2013
    I got mine off ebay, i think it was 2 bucks for 200 of assorted colors red, yellow, green, blue. but its been a long time so i'm sure the price is higher now.
  10. rojororeo

    rojororeo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2013
    We don't have nearly that many chickens, but I do the same thing, just putting single different color bands on whichever leg I happen to have in my hand for the matching birds. We only have two sets of 3 for the BOs and the BRs, so it is much quicker than yours. But yours is awesome work! I am going to remember that specificity if I ever get tons of one type. :) God job!!

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