View Full Version : clipping chicken wings
29-12-2009, 03:41 PM
My chooks have discovered there's a whole world to discover outside their yard, and have worked out a multi-step way to get over the fence. My yard is not really ready for a chook assault, so I've got the choice between extending the fence upwards or clipping their wings (or rather, 'wing').
I've googled a bit to get more info on the latter approach, and have found conflicting info ('cut as much as you can, it'll be fine' VS. 'careful you don't cut too much and have your little bird bleed to death in your arms'). For example, this article (http://everything2.com/title/Clipping+chicken+wings) suggests being very careful.
Opinions? How easy is it to go wrong?
29-12-2009, 05:35 PM
cut the fethers on one wing
hold the bird under your arm with its head under your armpit
open the wing and clip the four or five feathers closest to the wing tip
I cut about half way down the feather - you can go further but no real need
clipping the wing only puts of the birds' balance - it doesnt stop them flying but when they find they are unbalanced that usually stops them going any further
if you clip both - the flight pattern of feathers are balanced and it can still fly
DO NOT use an angle grinder
30-12-2009, 06:37 AM
I'd pretty much do the same as paradisi, except i'd use a 2 person approach. One to cut the wing one to cuddle the chook.
Cutting further would only increase the time between clips.
I can remember an RSPCA story once where a lady cut the whole wing off her budgie so it wouldnt fly. She said she heard on tv cutting the wing would prevent flying so she took the advice and cut THE WHOLE THING off. The budgie survived apparently.
09-01-2010, 05:11 PM
I'm having a problem with the choice of words here. Paradisi and Eric mention it, but to be perfectly clear, don't cut the wing (meat/skin/bone), cut the feathers! All you need to do is cut off some of the main flight feathers on one side.
(Eric's story makes me cringe ... = P )
10-01-2010, 09:20 AM
you know those lovely scrumptious tiny quail you can buy in the shop - they have the end of their wing chopped off when young
I dont eat quail since I heard that one
11-01-2010, 09:11 PM
So far, I've opted to amend the enclosure, raising the walls with bamboo sticks in each corner, then string and cloth. Just a bit freaked out about cutting anything not supposed to be cut. However, I'm considering renaming one of them to Houdini - this is getting a bit ridiculous, so I think it's time to go snip snip. Sister-in-law grew up on a farm, so she said she'd come over and show us the first time.
Thanks for all the advice guys!
12-01-2010, 05:46 AM
Once you do it once to a chicken, by the time they grow their feathers back the have forgotten all about flying. Or so I have found
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