When to clip wings on ~3 week old chicks?


9 Years
Apr 12, 2010
Southern California
I've got a couple of buff Orps that are trying to fly a bit -- even before they're outside.. On top of that these two tend to be a bit skittery and are easily startled which seems to trigger the interest in flight.. Should I consider clipping the wings before it's time to be out in the coop or wait a bit longer..?
As far as I know you shouldn't clip wings until they are adults. Put a lid on the brooder, or put them back if they fly out when you open it and make sure any outside coop is roofed as crows/hawks will make short meals of them!
I'm not sure why you would want to clip their wings - are they able to fly out of their enclosure? In which case I would put a top on it or something. Or because you can't catch them? (sad truth - even chickens that can't fly can get away from us if they want to). Or are you thinking if they never LEARN to fly it will be easier? BO's mature into good sized chickens, and once they are grown and laying, they really don't fly very high. I myself wouldn't clip the wings of a 3 week old for any reason - they are growing and developing and learning how to do stuff - important stuff, like get away from something dangerous - so I wouldn't want to interfere with their development that way. They do go through a phase of being very unfriendly - 'skitterish' as you say, but they will get friendly again as they mature and learn that you are the bringer of all good things... I've never heard of clipping the wings of such a youngster, actually.
Personally, I wouldn't clip any chickens wings. I especially wouldn't clip a BO's wings. When they get to be adults, they are too heavy to fly very high anyway, so it's kind of redundant to do so. At least Henrietta is

Thanks.. I wasn't sure.. Yes, these two look to be able to fly about 2 feet high now and I'll be investing in a screened top to ensure they don't roam the house while we're out (kids at school,etc).. It's just a matter of time.. I think these two BO's skittery behaviour is part of the issue.. When I reach in to grab one these two run like crazy to get away from us. The other two (2 week old Aruacana's) are happy to be grabbed and really don't run much. I'll skip the clipping and will wait and see.. Thanks all!

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom