New Chicks - a little skittish and shy


In the Brooder
9 Years
Mar 1, 2010
Pacific NW
We just brought home 5 baby chicks

2 - two week old Light Brahma
2 - 4 day old Golden Laced Wyandottes
1 - 4 day old Araucana

We've had them home for two days now and they are getting along great. We have been petting, holding them, trying to get them to eat from our hands, but they are still very skittish when I reach into the brooder, and can't wait to be put down after holding them.
The two Light brahma have good reason- they had dried feces on their toes that I had to soak in water and scrape off - but the others have had nothing but gentle handling.

Of course we'll keep trying to hold them, and play with them - but is it expected that they would want little to do with us so soon after being brought home? Does it take a week or a few for them to warm up to human handling?

Also - we've given them a few worms to eat from the garden - it is a good idea to give them grit (parakeet grit) once we introduce treats like this?
they will warm up to you eventually. Try giving them boiled egg whites, mine LOVE them and whenever I reach my hand in they jump all over it and start pecking thinking I have boiled eggs. Trust me, their keep away game is a riot. You won't need much grit for the eggs, but insects you might.
That's interesting, you feed boiled egg whites? Reason for that? I always thought you should give em boiled egg yolks as that's where most of the nutrition is...
I give the yolks.

I like my chicks and chickens, too, but except for a couple of the Bantie breeds, they don't usually sit on my lap or anything.

I do notice that these little Golden Comets are friendly and less skittish than most chicks.

I know some will disagree with me, but I think nature intended for chickens to be skittish. After all, they are prey animals.

That said, if you pick one up and hold it until it settles down for a while, and do this, and do this, it will probably get so that it likes to be held.

I just enjoy being around them, without holding them, pretty much. My Black tailed Japanese banties will often fly onto my shoulders, though.

I'll try giving them some yolks- always sounded a little cannibalistic - but seems like a popular food for chicks.

Should I be giving them fine grit (like parakeet grit) now that I've started giving them food other than chick starter?
In the calcium in parakeet grit a big concern?

We'll keep handling them and playing, and see how tame they become - the Brahma and Wyandottes should be pretty calm breeds - not sure about the Araucana.
They seem to like the whites much more than the yolk, but they'll still eat it. I give the whites because I hear it has more protein than the yolk. Which is what the chicks need the most. For the first few weeks.
If you just give a little extra food, you don't need to worry about adding grit.

And I do think it is a good idea to get them used to eating things other than chicken feed, especially if they are going to be expected to go outside and russle up some of their own food.

Fun little things, aren't they?

So far they have turned their beaks up at both the egg yolks and whites - one little peck, and they walk away - I'll try again in a few days

But live worms send them into a frenzy - chasing each other around, stealing it from one another, hilarious to watch. Now when I stick my hand into the brooder they come running up to see what I've brought.

They are still not yet fond of being held - but we'll work on that.
Oh wow, they denied egg white? Hmm, first time my chicks saw egg white the battle was on! They were only 3-4 days old and chased eachother everywhere trying to snatch a big chunk from the other's mouth. They'll eat anything though, whether it be grass, bread, I can't help but give mine several treats a day. I guess I need to stop that, even though they eat a lot of their chick starter.
These 5 seem to be pretty picky - as I also tried to entice them with some freshly cooked pasta that they basically ignored.
The worms are the only thing so far that really gets them going - of course they are very happy with their regular chick food.

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom