Safe treats to feed chicks for imprinting?

Discussion in 'Peafowl' started by Helen in the Desert, May 24, 2016.

  1. Helen in the Desert

    Helen in the Desert Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 27, 2011
    Palm Springs
    What treats and at what age can I give treats to chicks? Don't want to make anyone sick. Do want to have tame birds when they grow up.
    I know what I can feed to adults, just not chicks.

    Thanks all
  2. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 21, 2015
    No where Nebraska
    You can feed them about anything an adult bird can eat as long as they have a source of grit.
    I give mine the rine of my cantaloupe and watermelon, they love it. Or canned corn, peas, carrot pealings, if you give dried corn be sure it is cracked (things like that) but any fresh fruit or vegetable would be seen as a treat.
    You can give treats as soon as they are eating their food well, and have had access to grit.
  3. Helen in the Desert

    Helen in the Desert Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 27, 2011
    Palm Springs
  4. DylansMom

    DylansMom RIP 1969-2017

    Jan 10, 2014
    Giving your Peachicks treats will not cause them to imprint on you. Imprinting generally occurs during the first hours/day of life, the chicks imprint on the first caregiver they are exposed to. It may be the Peahen if she hatched them, it may be a human if they were incubated, and if you are careful and several hatch they will imprint on each other. Imprinting Peafowl can have a downside, with the hens it is usually fine, but imprinted males can become aggressive toward humans when they mature, because they have no fear of people. Giving treats from a young age will get you calmer, tamer birds, but not like imprinted ones. I have both and imprinted ones can be petted and picked up without too much of a fight. Tame(but not imprinted) will eat from your hand, and will not be too nervous around you, but they probably will not tolerate touching or picking up. That said, I do not give my chicks any treats until they are at least 6 weeks old, it is very important that they eat amprolium medicated starter and treats can cause them to ignore their starter in favor of goodies.
  5. KsKingBee

    KsKingBee Overrun With Chickens

    I agree with everything DylansMom said. One thing I do is hand feed the chicks from the begining with medicated chick starter that has been blended with hard boled egg. Later when they go out to the brooder they get the crumbles that have been wetted with raw egg. I make it a bit sticky and they just love it. Some will become very friendly and the rest will be more calm, although they will not come much closer than to take peanuts after they grow up.

    Do be careful about trying to imprint cocks for the reasons given above. I have one I bought that is not scared of anything, he free ranges and will attack the lawn mower when I enter 'his' area. I have to tell company to be very watchful of him as he will flog anyone he deems is invading his area.
  6. Helen in the Desert

    Helen in the Desert Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 27, 2011
    Palm Springs
    I suppose "imprinting" is the wrong word. I think "taming and training" would be better. I just wanted to use the treats in conjunction with handling to make handling always a positive experience. The single chick I have right now is being raised with poultry chicks, but gets carried about when I do yard work and gets to sit in my lap and watch a bit of TV in the evening. I am getting some more pea chicks tomorrow and figure I will handle them one on one for awhile each day.

    Thank you so much for the advise tho - I will definitely NOT imprint if I have the opportunity since that could be really problematic.
  7. Dany12

    Dany12 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 20, 2011
    In pictures ..... :

    A specialist !


    What's the point ????


    This could end up like that!

  8. KsKingBee

    KsKingBee Overrun With Chickens

    These are tame birds, the product of hand feeding, and no, they don't want to be touched, but they will reach into my pocket when I am not looking and steal peanuts.



    This is imprinted.


    And to answer Dany's question of why, because when I enter my pens they don't freak out or explode like a pea bomb.
  9. SherrynBill

    SherrynBill Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2014

    I give my 3 week old chicks smashed up hard boiled eggs for treats. Too many treats takes away the nutrition that they really need so give them sparingly. As long as you pay attention to, hold, and give them what they need, they will be very tame. I have one Easter egger named Princess who is a year old and she loves my husband. She follows him everywhere and loves to be held. She even climbed a ladder with him and watched him while he was building their new shed.
    Last edited: May 26, 2016
  10. Garden Peas

    Garden Peas Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2014
    There's lots of good advice already [​IMG] I just want to add one thing -- I worry about dried mealworms & peachicks. I think it's important for the chicks to have had grit and be a little older, and to limit the quantities so the chick doesn't develop an impaction in the gut from the dried mealworms. Whenever I see dried mealworms recommended as chick treats, I worry about overdoing it.

    My chicks like bread for treats, and I don't worry so much about that.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by