Thursday, November 10, 2011

How To Catch A Chicken

My chickens are free-range chickens. I've tried to allow them free-range in our backyard and garden. I've grown plants for them to eat, mulched areas for them to dig and scratch in and have put out scratch grains in the dirt. The only problem is they get tired of my mulch, plants and scratch. Leaving our place looking for alternatives, like my neighbor's yard. Leaving me trying to catch them and put them back.

Chickens foraging in the garden. 
Chickens foraging in the garden.
Foraging in the mulch in the blackberry bed. 
I've did what I could to catch the girls before they get over the fence. I've discussed options with my husband on how to prevent their excursions. And of course I've went catching, chasing and scaring chickens back into our yard. In my experience with my flightful fowl,  I've learned a few things that has helped me, (sometimes.)

Chicken in the front yard, close to the street and chicken eating dogs. 
Catching a chicken depends on her response to you when she sees you. In my tiny bit of knowledge on catching my little wanderers, here the ideas I've tried.
  • Chicken Response; just stops foraging and looks at you; try talking softly as you move slowly toward her, if she doesn't move you can catch her. If she moves you can attempt to herd her back. (Good luck on the herding)
  • Chicken Response; looks at you and keeps foraging. Just go pick her up and put her back. Talk softly to her and make sure her wings are tucked in or you may get smacked in the face with one. 
  • Chicken Response; looks at you, stops foraging and squats. Walk over slowly, reach down and rub her back. (she will think you are a rooster), after petting her back pick her up, wings tucked and place her back in the yard.
  • Chicken Response; looks at you, stops foragging and runs or moves away. Good chance your not going to catch her. Things I've tried; calling them by a pet name, herding them, running after them (look around to make sure neighbors aren't gathered around laughing at you), running to try and get in front of them to turn them in the homeward direction, or act like you're lunging at them to scare them and hopefully they will go back over the fence. Or just wait until a neighbor calls and states your chicken is in their house foraging in the house plants. She will be easier to catch then. 
Chicken at the neighbor's, making a mess for me to clean up.  
She enjoys scratching in the neighbor's mulch. (I have the same mulch. Why can't she stay home!)
Yes all these ideas I've tried. I think I will call the vet in the morning to learn how to clip chickens wings!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...