1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

rescued feral chicken is ANXIOUS

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by cobrien, Apr 25, 2011.

  1. cobrien

    cobrien Songster

    Mar 16, 2009
    Oakland, CA
    Hi Everyone, my neighbor and I are city chicken folk. we heard about a loose "turkey" in the neighborhood and we discovered it was a black naked neck chicken, and that it was not only loose, but feral. we figured out where she slept and we caught her last night. we considered leaving her wild as she was doing quite well on her own as far as finding food and a very tricky sneaky place to sleep, well, except for the poop evidence under the shrubs. but there were reports of her running in the street and we worried about the hot dry weather that is on its way to northern CA. so, she is now confined at my neighbor's place and HATING it. pacing back and forth and kind of panicky all day long. her run is fairly spacious for a single chicken- ~4'x8', but not what she's used to, of course. we feel really bad for her. she is eating and drinking, though.

    do you think this feral chicken can adjust to captivity? how long do you think it might take? there are 2 other chickens she can live with after the quarantine but we think she is mainly PO'd that she's locked up.

    she's getting treats of course but any ideas on distracting her would help. i already suggested that we try cabbage/lettuce.

    final question: she has spurs about 1" long. should we trim them before introducing her to the 2 others?


    PS how do you like her name: CHER!!! the resemblance is quite amazing.

  2. welasharon

    welasharon Songster

    Jun 28, 2010
    North Florida
    It may help if you have some partial covering on the pen so it doesn't look to her like she can get out too easily. I think eventually she will adjust. I have a feral rooster that I am trying to tame as well. Can't get him caught yet though. He roosts way up in the pine trees.
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2011
  3. TeamChaos

    TeamChaos Songster

    Nov 8, 2009
    Yes, give her plenty of cover to hide in too.
  4. Pinky

    Pinky Songster

    Nov 15, 2008
    South GA
    Quote:^This and a few shrubs or bushes may help her calm down.
  5. geebs

    geebs Lovin' the Lowriders!

    Sep 28, 2008
    It may have a nest of eggs it was sitting that you are keeping her from.
  6. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

    Aug 25, 2008
    "She" has spurs? Are you sure it's not a rooster? hens can get spurs, but it's pretty unusual.....
  7. KBlue

    KBlue Songster

    Apr 21, 2011
    Katy, TX
    Quote:^Was thinking the same thing....

    In any case, I concur with the suggestions of providing some sort of cover for her to hide in, she may be feeling "exposed".

  8. cobrien

    cobrien Songster

    Mar 16, 2009
    Oakland, CA
    Quote:She looks just like the hen pics of naked necks I've seen and nothing like the rooster. very tiny comb and wattles, and shorter tail than the roosters have and no crowing. she does not seem to be young enough to trick us. but maybe s/he has. but i'll get some pics to be sure. thanks!
  9. Patricia Jane

    Patricia Jane Songster

    Oct 28, 2010
    Petaluma CA
    Not trying to ruffle any feathers but I would release her if she doesn't calm down. I understand you wanting her to be safe but she has lived this long in the wild why place her in a stressful enviroment. Hope all works well.
  10. cobrien

    cobrien Songster

    Mar 16, 2009
    Oakland, CA
    Quote:thanks - no ruffled feathers here. we considered the same thing before catching her, and it wasn't an easy decision to reach, my neighbor and i were both kind of on the fence about it. the plan after the quarantine was to let her free range the back yard with 2 other chickens, at which point she could take off if she wants (fences around yard are 6' tall). or maybe at that point she could get her free ranging enjoyment in during the day and come back to the coop. we are in a densely populated area and she will likely damage some gardens if loose, and then some feathers might get ruffled. at least we are not in a snobby rich neighborhood and we have a live & let live kind of culture. we did clip her wings, if she does take off or if we release her i hope her flight feathers are grown back. now i wish we hadn't done that. ugh, sometimes it is hard to decide what is best for the animal.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by