Skittish chicks

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Love my Critters!, Apr 25, 2008.

  1. Love my Critters!

    Love my Critters! Songster

    Apr 15, 2008
    Carlsbad, NM
    Does anyone have any ideas on how to get my chicks used to me? I have 9 little chicks that are 5 weeks old. They are all silkies, and are supposed to be mostly pullets. We got them at 1 day old, and I admit that with a 4 year old daughter and a sick hen inside that house that I have been nursing back to health, I haven't been able to spend as much time with them as I should have. Anyway when any of us get near them they chirp LOUDLY and all run into a corner. Then they try to climb on top of each other to get the farthest away from us. I've tried using treats, and they won't even try them. Even if I lay fresh fruit and veggies in their brooder they avoid it like that plague. Like I'm trying to kill them with treats! Can anybody give me some suggestions? My older chickens are very gentle and it upsets me greatly that these do not trust us.[​IMG]
  2. Chickaroo!

    Chickaroo! Songster

    Dec 27, 2007
    I put chick starter in the palm of my hand and let the chicks come to it. They do eat right from my hand and some even stand on my arm or fingers. Sometims it takes a couple of seconds for them to approach but once one does, they all come!
    Good luck!
  3. CUDA

    CUDA Songster

    Mar 4, 2008
    Just keep handling them as much as you can, and talk to them also. Treats can help, but I have had the most luck just picking them up so they learn you aren't going to hurt them. Good luck!
  4. wynedot55

    wynedot55 Songster

    Mar 28, 2007
    as your chicks grow an get used to you.they will tame down an let you handle them.i never handle my chicks much cept when im when they get tobe hens they are super follow me all over the place.
  5. Love my Critters!

    Love my Critters! Songster

    Apr 15, 2008
    Carlsbad, NM
    Thanks for the replies everyone. I'll keep trying![​IMG]
  6. zatsdeb

    zatsdeb Songster

    Oct 2, 2007
    Lincoln, Illinois
    I put myself in their position, you are in this nice warm box and this big hand comes in and trys to grab you!!
    Mine always run to a corner, but I still try to pick them up and handle them. By the time the get outside when I go with treats they come running, but usually the only time I can pet them and handle them is when they are in their nesting boxes or on the roost, unless I manage to have a few that I pay special attention to from the start. I have so many, over a hundred, it is hard sometimes to remember which ones I have handled. I usually try to make friends with any rooster I plan on keeping.
  7. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    I do this with my work animals too...
    I'm always talking to them so that they know my voice and don't freak out when I'm cleaning their cages...
    Even just sitting quietly may get the bravest of the bunch getting curious about the big hand from the sky.
  8. Patchesnposies

    Patchesnposies Chickens.....are my ONE weakness!

    Mar 5, 2008
    Southern New Mexico
    My three older kids (8, 8, and 10) all like to go out and "play" with the chickens. They sit in the pen and the chickens all come and sit on their heads, backs, in their laps, and up next to them.

    Our pullets were inside the house until they were feathered out (in a kiddie pool with a chicken wire frame over the top). So, they were very used to us, our noises and a lot of activity.

    We are a family of kooks.

    Deb, wife to Brad
    Mom to: 6 Kids, ages 1,2 3,8,8 and 10.
    2 English Mastiffs, 3 Cats, 2 Ferrets, 1 Hamster, 1 Tarantula, 1 Whiptail Scorpion, 18 Buff Orpington Pullets, 6 Americaunas, 2 Peking Ducks, 4 Crested Ducks, 6 African Geese and 2 Toulouse Geese......with 2 little Nigerian Dwarf Doelings on the way!
  9. AudreyO

    AudreyO Hatching

    Mar 28, 2008
    I have silkies too and I read on forums how sweet chicks were. I have had mine since they were 2 weeks old and have handled them everyday (they are about 7 weeks old now). And they STILL freak when I go to pick them up. I have a 4 year old too. Atleast when my daughter handles them they don't flap and squeal but when I do I they go wild. I am with you on this one... confused. Even if they don't act like a pet, I still love them and their chicken ways.

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