New chickens?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by RooksMom, Oct 14, 2014.

  1. RooksMom

    RooksMom Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 14, 2014
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    I recently acquired some five month old hens. they have been confined to their coop for four days, and this evening I let them out about an hour before sunset to roam a little. Just as it was getting too dark to read, I put down my book to herd them back into the coop and they were walking into it all on their own.

    Does this mean that they are ready for their confinement to end?
     
  2. lightchick

    lightchick Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes, they usually do fine after 3 to 4 days of being in the coop.
     
  3. RooksMom

    RooksMom Out Of The Brooder

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    thank you.

    i know chickens are the smartest of animals, but I thought that a week might be a little long for them to realise that the coop was safe.

    I've had a couple people suggest to me that they stay in the coop as long as a month, which I thought was rather excessive. I had one person suggest I let them out for an hour or so, near sunset, so they would be inclined to go back in on their own, on day four and keep doing that for a week. I liked this idea, because the poor dears aren't meant to be copped up all the time, but I wondered that, if they are going back in on their own, doesn't that mean that they feel secure and safe in the coop?
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2014
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    I keep mine in a coup/run combination but only a day or two, and they have always come back.

    Mrs K
     
  5. RooksMom

    RooksMom Out Of The Brooder

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    Another question I had.

    They're a bit shy. They'll let me get close to them, but not touch them, and they are very leery of me. How do I tame them down a bit so they don't mind me so much? The animals I have experience taming are all larger animals. I never worried overmuch about the rabbits. Most of them I was there from the day they were born, so whether or not they liked me, they were used to me and would let me pick them up and move them.
     
  6. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Food, quiet and slow movements. Just sit a few moments with them after you feed them. Bring the treats and call them when you do. They will often always be skittish if you reach for them, but if you sit still, they will come up.

    Mrs K
     
  7. RooksMom

    RooksMom Out Of The Brooder

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    Harvey county Kansas
    Thanks. I've actually got some bread heels I was planning on giving to them today, I think I'll start with those.

    I got really mad at my sister yesterday. I had to clip their wings, and I asked her to hold them while I did (my grandfather showed me how) and instead of being slow and grabbing them gently, she just lunges in and grabs the first one she can get her hands on by her feet and holds her out like that. She expected me to clip her wings just like that. I took Agnes from her, cuddled her properly and pet her. Pip told me "You're coddling them." as if it were a bad thing. Agnes calmed right down once I had her right side up and was stroking her neck gently.

    Then, Pip proceeds to try and corner the other two to try and catch them, the whole time I'm telling her, "it's not a big deal right now, if I have to wait until tomorrow morning when I let them out so be it, you're scaring them." Then she tries to herd them back into the coop so she can wrangle them more easily. I put my foot down on that one. I told her that if they go in the coop, leave them alone, that is their safe spot. She tried to argue with me about it saying that that would be the easiest place to catch them from, and I told her that I didn't care, the coop is their safe spot, if they go in there, unless you're collecting eggs for me, leave them alone.

    After she did that they went from letting me sit down next to them, but not touch them, to running away from me if I come within ten feet of them. :(
     
  8. appps

    appps Overrun With Chickens

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    Oh dear, she didn't really help did she.

    Food is the way into their affection and ordinary old cockatiel bird seed is one they can't resist. Let them know what you have for a couple of days by just throwing them a handfull whenever you are out with them. Then next couple of days throw the handfull next to your feet, next couple of days throw some near your feet and also hold some in your hand. If there is a treat it won't take them long to come for it, Just keep your sister away while you are doing it!
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. lightchick

    lightchick Overrun With Chickens

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    Too bad. Sometimes people just don't understand having any kind of affection toward animals (chickens especially).
    I hope you can tame them. My chickens trust me the most because I don't scare them (at least not on purpose) and I give lots of treats.
     
  10. RooksMom

    RooksMom Out Of The Brooder

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    I can have yet to now win the heart of an animal that I set my mind to.
     

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