Wing clipping?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Lionbee, May 21, 2011.

  1. Lionbee

    Lionbee Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    22
    Apr 10, 2011
    Northwest
    My chicks have become quite brave. Yesterday they were on their gate. Today while I was in the house they escaped to the rest of the backyard. I am reluctant to clip their wings. How do I do it? What type of clippers do I need? Any advice is very welcome. New to raising chickens.
     
  2. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,852
    32
    249
    May 23, 2009
    DFW
    I don't clip. I just covered over the brooder with a wire top to keep our chicks inside.

    We have bantams who are very good fliers. We do let them free range in our yard with supervision, and my thinking is that if they should ever be threatened by a predator, they need to be able to fly to save their own lives. Clipped chickens are like sitting ducks.
     
  3. Lionbee

    Lionbee Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    22
    Apr 10, 2011
    Northwest
    Hard decision. Hubby says clip them. I like being able to get into the fenced area with them. If it was covered it would be hard.
     
  4. UC Student

    UC Student Out Of The Brooder

    40
    0
    32
    May 1, 2011
    Davis, Ca
  5. floridachickhatcher

    floridachickhatcher Chillin' With My Peeps

    576
    2
    131
    May 22, 2011
    Hollister,FL
    Yeah its really easy my mom has me clip the wing while she holds the hen we dont have the yards covered with anything it gets way too hot to keep them covered
    i just barely clip a few inches of the feathers and she is tossed back into the yard never knowing what happened or you can just clip one wing that works too

    Opps sorry i thought you meant to clip the hens wings not the chicks
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2011
  6. Lionbee

    Lionbee Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    22
    Apr 10, 2011
    Northwest
    They are 7 1/2 weeks old. Just learning the flying thing. I'm kind of proud of their flapping and flying abilities. I LOVE THEM! But, I just can't watch them all the time. Rather safe than sorry. I am a bit concerned about predators but for the most part they are very protected. It would have to be a hawk or eagle to get them. Maybe a dog if it could somehow get in our yard.
    Anyways, thanks for the advice. I have a friend coming over to give me a hand clipping them tomorrow. Do you need to clip both wings or just one wing per bird?
    I'm going to go read the link now...THANKS!
     
  7. HHandbasket

    HHandbasket The Chickeneer

    You only clip the flight feathers (outer-most, large feathers), and don't clip them TOO close to the actual wing flesh. Clip about the 10 outermost feathers. If you clip both wings, they'll figure out a way to get airborne somehow--they'll compensate. If you only clip one wing, they'll never get airborne, no matter what they do. They'll just flap around in circles & cannot get off the ground. It's harmless and effective.

    And if you're crafty like me... you can make earrings out of the feathers. [​IMG]

    I usually clip their wings for the first time at around 10 to 12 weeks of age. Because we live in the mountains with wilderness/woods right outside our yard fence, I really don't want them getting over the fence. I've seen Rocky Raccoon lurkin' around out there on the other side of the fence in early evenings, right as the sun is fixin' to go down. Our dog keeps the predators out of the yard (Ginger the flock-guard dog is awesome), but if one of my chooks got over the fence, I fear a predator would find it before we did. So, we clip.
     
  8. Double T

    Double T Out Of The Brooder

    69
    0
    39
    Mar 11, 2011
    W Texas
    ok here's prob a weird Q (and I'm very new to chickens and chicken raising) but if you clip once will that do it for the rest of their lives or will they eventually grow back? Seems when I was a kid we had a parakeet that we clipped it's wings and had to do it periodically.
     
  9. Lionbee

    Lionbee Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    22
    Apr 10, 2011
    Northwest
    good question!
     
  10. Lionbee

    Lionbee Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    22
    Apr 10, 2011
    Northwest
    A friend and I clipped the right wing of each bird today. A couple hours later they were out of the fence again! ARGH!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by