Taking chickens on an airplane?


Feb 15, 2019
New Jersey
(Sorry in advance if I’m in the wrong forum)

There’s a great breeder in NC that had a trio of a very rare bantam breed available that I just adore, and I’d love to get them! Problem is..I’m in NJ. I know they could be shipped but..I’m scared to death of that. A couple of my immediate family members will be in GA and it got me thinking..could we take chickens on a plan? I’m ok if it’s more expensive, I just want to ensure their safety.

Has anyone done this before? Any thoughts or experiences? The flight from GA to NJ is only 1 1/2 - 2 hours long if that helps. 😊

Thank you so much in advance! 😁
I have not had any poultry flew to me before, but have you had chicks that were shipped to you? If these are adult chickens then they are more hardy than chicks, so I think they could last through a shipment. If they are chicks, then they will still be fine, if you think it through. I've had chicks be shipped to me from 6 states, so I think, to save money and worry, to have them shipped. Just make sure the breeder intelligently knows how to ship the birds and give them a full meal before shipment to ensure survival through the trip.
This is my thought, but I may not be right. I just thought about it and used common sense in some variables. Good luck!
I know some airlines including Delta allow pet birds but I’m unsure about chickens. It’s also worth noting that if it’s anything like flying a cat or dog across state lines the birds will probably have to pass a bunch of expensive health tests before they allow them on the plane. I’m sure someone else on here will know more specifics though.

Excerpt from the official tsa blog: A little birdie told me that this weekend is the start of the annual Wayne Chicken Show in Wayne, Nebraska! This year’s theme is Chickens from Around the World. So if you’re planning on flying the coop with your backyard bird to compete in the crowing contest, here are some travel tips to ensure your next trip is free of fowls.

Fresh eggs and wings are good to go in your carry-on or checked bags! We don’t mind if you bring your chicken through security; however, you may want to check with your airline first. Check out our traveling with pets article for more travel tips. Remember the early bird gets the worm. This year has been a record breaking travel season, so beat the flock and get to the airport early. Found at https://www.tsa.gov/blog/2019/07/10/tsa-week-review-july-1-7
I imagine that people from Hawaii have animals, including chickens, flown to them all the time. I would imagine chickens on a flight would be fine as long as the airline knows you have live animals.

If they were chicks, I'd personally want them to fly with me and probably stow them under the seat in front of me. If you follow this route, you'd likely need a small animal carrier that is compliant with the airline of your choice.

ETA - if they ARE actually chicks, I'd bring some Hot Hands warmers with you and keep them in the carrier which should help the chicks not get chilled while in transport.
Thank you all so much! They are all full grown (four total) but we are thinking that shipping them (via USPS) may be a better idea after all. 😁 Cucumbers for hydration and food is a fantastic idea, thank you for the suggestion!

Thank you all so much! I’ll try to keep this thread updated as this breed is really exciting! 😁

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