New Chickens

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splash101

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  • Location: Leicestershire
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New Chickens
« on: November 03, 2012, 08:13 »
I collected some new chickens this week. (I know i have broken the rules, no photos yet).

Four light sussex 18 weeks old. They are fairly placid. They dont mind being handled (well so far any way) which is a good thing because im not designed for this running malarky.

The first evening, which was anticipated, they wouldnt go into the coop, even with the light on. Two of them were happy to go in and out but one of them was really getting quite anxious and almost wimpering which was unsettling the other three.
After 20 minutes I picked her up and calmed her down for a few minutes and then placed her in the coop where the other three shot in after her quickly.

The next morning i opened the door expecting them to leap out, but they stayed in the coop pretty much all day. They came out to poop, eat and drink then dash back in. 15 minutes before bedtime is when they come out and do their main eating and drinking and then settle in for the night. Its was the same the next day as well.

They are now spending a little more time outside and they do come out in the morning and when i go to the gate and call them they come over (the power of corn).
They seem really timid outdoors, I wonder if they have been shed raised and are not used to being outdoors. They'll soon settle down and they are getting better day by day.
Other than that they are good clean healthy birds.

I really like light sussex and have wanted some for a while. I know there common but i just like them. They are also lot easier to see in the garden as all of my fences are really dark and seeing the black rocks was somewhat of a challenge.

Photos will follow at some point, if they stay out long enough for me to get some.

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compostqueen

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Re: New Chickens
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2012, 15:12 »
They are kept indoors as young birds til they are sold to you at the point of lay.

So, they need to get used to their surroundings and are being naturally cautious.  They will get used to you and will come to you readily if you always have a mealworm or a healthy tidbit. It's a good idea to handle them regularly as you will invariably need to be able to handle them safely to administer medication etc.  You have to check their feet and under their wings and all sorts so being able to handle them easily is a must.  Also they seem to like a cuddle  :)

When they are warm and cosy after a night locked in the coop they might be slow to emerge into the freezing icy blast of the November outdoors.  Always hang around to make sure they all come out to ensure that all is well.  Can you make sure too that you do a head count when you put them to bed. I once locked one of mine out all night. Luckily foxy didn't call  :ohmy:

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splash101

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Re: New Chickens
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2012, 16:08 »
They've been out most of today (Wahoo) despite being a very cold then wet start of the day we've had sunshine from 11am.
They seem really docile in handling respect, maybe is just because im used to something a bit more feisty, hope it continues though as it makes life a lot easier.

I Always do a head count, my hubby put them away once and didnt. When i asked him if he'd counted he looked at me gone out. Good job i went to check as there was one missing and she buried herself under a bush for the night. I lifted her and put her away as no doubt we would have been visited in the night.



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