was it a mistake to hand-feed?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by vtsarahb, May 3, 2009.

  1. vtsarahb

    vtsarahb Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2009
    Bradford, VT
    I started hand-feeding my chicks treats to get them to be more friendly... it worked [​IMG]

    Now they are nearly 3 weeks old. Whenever I put my hands in the brooder to change water etc., some of them peck me to see if I have food, some of them climb onto my arms just to hang out. It's very cute, but they are getting bigger and it's starting to hurt! I want them to remain friendly as they grow up, but at the same time I don't want to be pecked and climbed on by 11 adult chickens some day. For this reason, I've stopped hand-feeding them treats.

    Will they eventually get the right idea, that I'm not a walking buffet/jungle-gym? Should I start training them to stay off of me? Has anyone had a problem with this before? I'm a first-time chicken-mom so any advice would be great [​IMG]
  2. okieroy

    okieroy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 29, 2009
    Bethany, Ok
    One idea is to continue to take the treats with you to their coop. As soon as they begin to come at you throw the treats on the ground. They will still look to you as the Treat King and bringer of all good things, but they will start looking on the ground for the treats instead of in your hands or on your person.
    Last edited: May 3, 2009
  3. momofdrew

    momofdrew Chillin' With My Peeps

    Hand feeding helps keep them tame so they wont run away from you if there is a problem and you have to pick them up...
  4. Nikki28

    Nikki28 David Bowie is my co-pilot

    Dec 15, 2008
    I did that with my Red Stars and after I moved them into their run I began bringing them yummy treats in a basket. Now they freak out and get excited when they see the basket and chill out when it is just me.
    Being chickens though I still get my hands pecked at from time to time but they love to be picked up and cuddled and carried around.
  5. mmtillman

    mmtillman Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Good advice okieroy....I just posted a reply in regard to this very subject! I will begin doing this today!! My 4 week olds are about to maul me!! [​IMG]
  6. mmtillman

    mmtillman Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:I do a trick sorta like this..when I enter the coop...I only say ''chick chick'' IF I have food. If I DON"T have food or treats....I just say ''hello girls''.
    I honestly think they understand the English language!!! [​IMG]
    I tell all the grandkids not to say ''chick chick '' unless they plan on bearing gifts to the girls!!

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