when can I clip the wings? chickies flying already!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by littlebowpeeps, May 2, 2009.

  1. littlebowpeeps

    littlebowpeeps In the Brooder

    Apr 27, 2009
    Oak Harbor WA
    Hi everyone! My easter eggers are about 2 1/2 weeks old now. I have a large dog carrier that I took the top off to use as a brooder. They have discovered they can fly up to the edge and perch there. I laid a baby gate over the top so they won't fly out, but I was just curious how old should they be when you clip their wings? The coop is completely enclosed so they couldn't fly out. But when I take them around the garden I wouldn't want them flying off. Any ideas?

    Thanks for all your help!

  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    I know your question is when and not how, but I'll give this link anyway.


    You need to wait until the feathers stop growing. While the feathers are growing the shaft is filled with blood. And you'll have to redo it after every molt. Only clip one wing so they are off balanced when they try to fly. If you do both wings, they can still do quite well jumping and flapping.

    Wing clipping does not hurt them if you wait until the feathers stop growing. One argument I've heard for not clipping the wings is that they might be able to get away from a predator if they are attacked. Of course, if they can fly, they may go right over a fence to a neighbor's dog. You'll have to look at your set-up and make your decision.

    Good Luck!
  3. littlebowpeeps

    littlebowpeeps In the Brooder

    Apr 27, 2009
    Oak Harbor WA
    Thanks! See that was my other question. They have an enclosed area- with a top and all. but when I take them out around the yard to eat bugs and what not, I would just use the doggy portable pen without a top. so I wouldn't want them to be able to get out.
  4. Bird Brain

    Bird Brain Songster

    Mar 25, 2009
    Hixson, TN
    My EE have all their feathers still and are only about 3 months old if that. They can still run trough the fence. Anywho, since they were my first to be had raised, I was afraid they would take off when I introduced them to the barnyard with the other critters. We have a nursery side of our barn, fenced with wire with smaller holes luckily, that I let them stay in for days with food and water so they could see and smell other critters. After that the barnyard was second nature. They come and go as they please, but they never go very far away from the fence.

    The long winded point I am trying to make is...if you let them go they probably wont go far and they know where the food is, and will come back.

    And like ridgerunner said....the whole predator and neighbors dog thing will have to be considered, too.
  5. noitulover

    noitulover Songster

    Apr 23, 2009
    Central Virginia
    if you've got the top enclosed, i wouldn't worry about them getting out. we've got the top enclosed on ours and it hasn't been a problem.

    depending upon the breed, but a lot of times chickens don't like to go too far from their coopmates anyways. we let one of the chickens out of the run to free range, and she flew/ran back to beside the run where she could see her coopmates.

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