putting chicks outside for playtime...is there an easier way?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by newfmadible, Apr 18, 2009.

  1. newfmadible

    newfmadible Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 4, 2008
    North central Ohio
    I finally took the plunge today and let my 22 4 wk old chicks out in the yard for fresh air, sunshine and all around chicken fun. Their brooder box (a large cardboard box with heat lights) is in the garage. After reading ideas from this list I rigged up a pen in the side yard with some chicken wire. First problem...how to get the chicks into the pen? [​IMG] It is a bit of a distance from the garage out across the concrete drive to the yard. They don't exactly come when called or follow me around since they live in a box at this stage! I have been giving treats by hand so they usually run right up when I put my hands in the box. I was able to pick up the first few brave ones with no problem and transfer them to their original small rubbermaid brooder for transfer to the great outdoors. Then it got hard. REALLY hard. The remaining chicks were running away from me and it took me almost an hour to catch them all to take outside! [​IMG] Once in the outside pen they had a great time running around stretching their wings, scratching in the grass, just being chickens. Second problem...catching chicks to bring back inside to brooder. I basically did the same thing and was a little more successful catching them to bring inside. More of them seemed inclined to just let me pick them up. But the last remaining 6 or so were a real challenge. There has got to be an easier way. I feel like what was suppsoed to be an enjoyable time was traumatic for them at least in the beginning and the end. So, all you chicken experts, any suggestions?
     
  2. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    I am laughing at how funny you made that sound. I never have and trouble getting them out of their box. I just scoop up an armful!
     
  3. NWchickenLuv

    NWchickenLuv Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 31, 2009
    Bellingham WA
    I took my chicks out for the first time yesterday too. [​IMG] I only have 7 and they are 6 weeks old but they didnt' like being put in the transfer box to go out side or being put in it to go back inside. I think that is just how they are, go quick, I also think being out side it a good reward and well worth the little bit of peeping and wing flapping they may do. [​IMG]
     
  4. Big dreams

    Big dreams Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 5, 2009
    Well mine are about 6 weeks now and have only been outside once, because like you I had a time getting them from one place to another. It was a matter of them jumping out of the container I was trying to put them in, one in two out, two in one out ect. [​IMG]
     
  5. zippy11455

    zippy11455 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 31, 2009
    Get them used to going into a cat/dog portable kennel for treats. Then you can just close the door and transport them to their outside play area. Reverse process to return to the brooder at the end of playtime. I've only managed this with small numbers of chicks. Not sure how to handle a larger group. I only have 12 chicks.
     
  6. sangel4you

    sangel4you Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2009
    Halifax, Pennsylvania
    It's 75 and sunny here today which is about where their brooder is so I am taking my girls out today for the first time too!!! Should prove exciting as I dont have a pen persay to put them in, I'm putting them in our dog run...
     
  7. Knight Hawk Ranch

    Knight Hawk Ranch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 19, 2007
    Labelle, Florida
    I have a small wire cage with a feeder in it. I let them see me put food in it and they can't wait to get in it. Then once to their play pen out they go. Reverse the process for going in the night time pen.
     
  8. newfmadible

    newfmadible Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 4, 2008
    North central Ohio
    I had to laugh at your description Big dreams, of the "one in two out" scenario. That is exactly what it was like. Jeez!

    The portable kennel Idea is good, but we are using the sides from ours to cover the top of the brooder box. The box is big (6' x3') but not very tall and they can jump out now at will without some sort of cover on. So, that means buying a whole new dog kennel just to transport chicks and I am not sure hubby will be thrilled with that.
     

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