Leg bandettes from a young age?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Ariana, Jan 20, 2014.

  1. Ariana

    Ariana Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 31, 2013
    Grant, Florida
    I've got a shipment of chicks coming in soon and I'm going to be keeping records on each individual bird to make sure I only keep the best for breeding purposes. I have 20 pullets (10 each of Buff Orpington and Black Australorp) and 10 cockerels (5 each of the same breeds) coming. At adult age, they'll be about a size 11, yes? Maybe 12 for the roosters?

    Since I'm wanting to start keeping records near immediately is there any way to do the bandettes from a young age? I assume I can just get smaller bandettes and switch them out with the larger sizes as they grow. Has anyone done this before? I just need help knowing which size to start with. I understand if there aren't bandettes to fit them while only days/weeks old but I would like to keep records on them starting at one month old, at least.
  2. RiddleMe

    RiddleMe Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2011
    Central Oregon
    I have used SyrFlex (similar to VetWrap), VetWrap, colored Velcro (like what you buy to organize cords), and colored zip ties, all with good results. I like the VetWrap on the really little guys, then transitioning to the smaller zip ties, then finally the larger ones. With that few birds you could probably get away with just using zip ties vs numbered bands, you would only need 10 colors (you could do pullets on the right leg, cockerels on the left). Standard caveat, they can all do damage if allowed to get too tight, but I never had an issue. I would band one bird, tighten to the desired size, then trim. Then use the trimmed piece as a guide when tightening the other bands to try to keep them all the same size-ish. Fortunately, because of the way their feet are, you can get away with leaving a decent amount of growing room without having to worry about them falling off.

    I have also heard of people using twist ties and dabs of water-based paint on their heads (like what some of the hatcheries do). I might actually try the paint this year on the day-olds. On top their head it will take a few weeks before the new feathers come on.

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