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putting chicks in coop mid-day?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by siouxbee, May 9, 2007.

  1. siouxbee

    siouxbee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 8, 2007
    I'd love to let my chickens roam about while we're home and outside, but we have too many predators to be able to do this while we're out. [​IMG]

    On days when I have to be somewhere mid-day, can I just not let them roam, or has anyone had luck training them to come when called/having scratch so I can get them back into their run?

    Judging from our luck chasing chicks at 1.5 weeks old if they're not enclosed, we won't have much luck herding full-grown chickens somewhere they don't want to go...

    Thanks,
    siouxbee
     
  2. eggchel

    eggchel Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Ducks herd easily....... not chickens! The best thing to do is start training them right away to come when you call. Do this by calling them every time you feed them any treats (scratch, bugs, kitchen or garden scraps, etc.). Shortly they will associate your calling "chick chick chick" or whatever with yummy treats and they will come running from all directions. Then you can simply lead them to their pen, dropping only a teaser morsel or two along the way. If your property is small enough, just call and they will find you standing by their pen's gate. Then when they can see you, just throw the goodies into the pen and they will all run inside. Voila!


    chel
     
  3. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    Yep, what she said. That's what I do with my chickens and it works like a charm. I can put them up any time I want. Except for this one really chubby barred rock who pretty much does her own thing all the time anyway. If I have to leave in a hurry, sometimes she gets left out, but everybody else goes in fine.
     
  4. HenHappy

    HenHappy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 16, 2007
    on my way to you....
    I only have four lovely birds so I just pick them up and plop them in thier pen!! To many for you to do this?
     
  5. siouxbee

    siouxbee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, I'm glad to know there's a way to train them. I went out yesterday with some yummy multigrain toast (lots of seeds in it) and some romaine lettuce and tried this. They looked at me like it was nuts. One of the chicks (1.5 weeks old) took a crumb of bread, ran away, then dropped it and ignored me. No one was interested in the lettuce. Are they too young for food like that? I broke the bread really small, and still, only the one chick was interested, and not much at that.

    guess I'll have to go to the store and get me some scratch! Do you drop it on the ground in front of you first as you're training them, or do you think we can get them to eat out of our hands?

    We only have six at present, but they're FAST and so little they're easy to miss unless we corner them! Let me tell you, there aren't a lot of corners in our yard, but there sure are a lot of briars! And I don't want to get them in the habit of running when we come, so I don't like chasing them down. I want them to come at us, not run from us.

    Thanks so much for your help,
    Sioux
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2007
  6. cookinmom

    cookinmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Saint George GA
    HI Siouxbee, 1.5 weeks is too young for scratch. Try a smashed up boiled egg instead (no shell). Or cook up some quick oats with no salt and let them eat that from your hand (yeah, it's yucky, but they like it [​IMG] )
     
  7. eggchel

    eggchel Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Sorry, I didnt notice that you said that they are that young, duh! Yes, they are too young for most kinds of treats. As Cookinmom said.... boiled egg or cooked oatmeal or even a dab of yogurt. When they get a little bigger you will be able to feed them other treats and train them to come when called.



    chel
     

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