The chickens got out!

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labradors
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The chickens got out!

Post by labradors » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:37 am

Returned from walking the dogs with a dead cicada for the chickens, but when I went to offer it to them, they were OUTSIDE the run. Some idiot (me) hadn't fastened the gate properly after changing their water!

The last time one flew the coop, we had a heck of a time getting her back. She ran into the woods and led us on a merry dance before we netted her. We had only had them a couple of days then, so she didn't understand that the coop was "home".

This time, they were all hanging around the coop. I threw the cicada into the run and one hen went in after it. I closed the gate behind her. My Lab/BC mix, Abbey, was with me, and I don't trust her around the chickens as she likes to scare them. I yelled at her to "leave it" as I grabbed the ring-leader, Isobel and put her back in the coop. Amazingly, Abbey decided not to make a meal of the chickens and the two remaining ones were hiding from her around the back of the coop near the woods. They felt a bit trapped by the side of the coop and a chair, and I was able to grab them one-by-one and put them safely back inside. Phew!

Must be more careful in the future.....

Linda
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Jaye
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Re: The chickens got out!

Post by Jaye » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:49 am

Phew - Glad that ended well!
I trained all mine to come when they hear me call "chick chick chick" and shaking a container with their favourite treat - freeze-dried mealworms. It's really easy to train them and it's saved more than one of them a few times when uninvited predators showed up in the yard while they were out free-ranging.
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Happy
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Re: The chickens got out!

Post by Happy » Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:17 pm

Glad you were able to chicken wrangle!
Mine come running from all directions when they hear me yell "come get your candy!" That always means sunflower seeds or scratch so they don't dilly dally lol. They hop right into their pen for it. Don't ever try tricking them tho...they will remember and make you show the goods first for weeks!
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labradors
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Re: The chickens got out!

Post by labradors » Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:44 pm

Thank you so much Jaye and Happy, I really must work on a "recall". They already come to me whenever I appear, as I feed them dandelion leaves and slugs/snails from the garden, and when I go into the coop they usually come to see what goodies I am bringing them, but getting them to voluntarily go into the pen would be amazing. Clicker training anyone? {LOL}

Linda
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KimChick
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Re: The chickens got out!

Post by KimChick » Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:09 pm

What an adventure!
When we first got our hens and wanted to get them into the habit of going in the coop each night, we said "in you go" as we did it. Now, we don't close the coop doors in the Spring and Summer, so some of them roost outside within the enclosure (that has chicken wire with a lower layer of corn crib fencing around it).
When we let them out to free range with our supervision and want to get them back into the enclosure, we slowly herd them with a long stick, saying "in you go". They are cooperative.
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