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Discussion Starter #1
What are your thoughts, concerns, suggestions and helpful tips?

So our free range expirement failed. Id have loved to have this great homestead utopia with my chickens roaming around the yard pecking and making happy noises. BUT

They are so destructive. Omg the even threw all the lava rock around the HVAC system into the grass. They dug up a 4 year old thyme bush, killed some mums, pretty sire they killed my moms 10 year old clematis. Thankfully the rosebushes are 20 years old and even though they dug all around those roots go deep! Not to mention I'm tired of all the dirt all over the sidewalk they throw our of the flower beds.

So. We fenced in about 1/4 of the back yard (3/4 acre back there) and well, they fly right out of the 5 ft fence. I dont want to keep them confined to a covered run so I figure my only option is clipping their wings.
 

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Is that link the one where step 1 is ..."catch a chicken, the hardest part about clipping wings is catching the chicken." ? Me and dh read that and cracked up. :)

So of the 5 that are outside only 1 seems to be getring out now. But I definitely see clipping in our future. It will be nice to not have to sweep dirt and mulch off the sidewalk every day lol.
 

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I was going to post an update saying i didn't think we'd need to clip them. We figured out how they were getting over....and engineering gaffe on our part. They had a spot they could fly up to a ledge aboit 3 ft and walk through a gap. Fixed that and rhe last few days they've been content in their 2k sq ft area. Not even trying to get over. They haf trouble finding the coop whicb was wierd but we figured our another oops we made and had blocked off the front of the coop and they werent used to having to walk around the back. Fixed that...no more chasing chickens into the coop at 8pm.

So i was going to post that we didnt have to clip them.

Then i spent an hour and a half chasing a chicken around the FRONT yard... We have a 6ft privacy fence their...how the heck? Well...

Threat of a very large fishing net ( i didnt actually try to use it i was trying to make myself wider.) I corraled her arpund the house to the back gate....which would have worked great except I forgot my stupid dog was out and the excitment made him bark and her dart past the gate and out toward the driveway....and worse ...the road.

So I quick ran inside with big dummy. And grabbed some bread and lured her back into the front yard...and used my net to get her through the gate and through the back yard and into the chicken yard. . . .
o_O

In my pajamas.


Im sure the neighbors got a good laugh.

:rolleyes:

So i think its back to clipping....

And bury some chicken wire along the bottom of the front yard fence. Just in case.
 

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Read the instructions about the flight feathers as too aggressive clipping can lead to bleeding and possible loss.

My Sweetie clipped the right wing of all our birds when they started to cause problems. It was fun to watch them try to take off, turn right and cartwheel. However that didn't last long and they were getting in trouble again soon.

The next time she clipped both wings quite short.. No more problems, but it took forever to clean up the clippings.

If you have problems catching them, do it after dark.
 
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Yep.
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That's chickens for ya, and why, eventually most of us old-timers just keep them in a secure run connected to the coop. Sometime quite early in 50 years of keeping chickens I realized there is no chicken utopia. Just meat and eggs.
 
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