Feb 092012

How to Clip Chickens Wings

  • Do your chickens “ignore” your chicken fencing and pretty much go where they want to?
  • Are you worried that predators are going to kill your free ranging chickens that ignore their boundaries?
  • Do you want to STOP your chickens from wandering off your property?

One way to limit your flock’s mobility and prevent them from flying across fences is by clipping your chicken’s wings. Clipping a chicken’s wings is an owner’s way of saying “You can’t go anywhere.” It is the best method to prevent backyard chickens from fly anywhere they want. Some people think that wing clipping is inhumane, and they don’t mind that chickens fly over fences and go where they want to. But, as a person who has seen many of her chickens needlessly killed, I see it as more of an advantage than a disadvantage.

One of the basic advantages of wing clipping is that if you keep your chickens in a free-range status, you significantly decrease the abilities of your chickens to fly anywhere they want and say “So Long!” If you wanted to keep your chickens inside their boundary area and keep them alive, you have to adapt to certain measures no matter how unfair it may seem.

For those who agree that the idea of wing clipping is one way to better protect your chickens and who want to learn the proper way to clip the wings of their chickens, it is easier than you think. If done properly, there is NO bloodshed involved and the chickens are none the worse for having their wings clipped.

The only part that you need to clip are the long primary feathers. For first timers, ask for assistance from someone who knows how because if you don’t, things might get messy between you and your chicken. There is a definite knack for holding onto the chicken and properly clipping the wings. For me, it is a two person job because it is just to hard to do this by yourself.

Clipping chicken wings may be a hassle and you definitely need to know what you are doing, but it is the best way to outsmart your chickens. If done correctly, you can take away the balance and flight coordination thus making them want to stay even if they are dead set against staying their area.

Things you will need before you begin:

1.Sharp scissors with a rounded tip.
3.Used towel
4.First Aid Kit
5.Your vet’s number


a. Which chicken should you pick first? The perfect candidate for wind clipping is the chicken that has her wings growing very prominently. Usually these are the chickens you see who fly proudly above other birds. Catch the bird by the feet. This is the most ideal way of getting her under your grasp.

b. Hold the chicken by the legs and support the body by holding her underneath using the palm of your hands to stop her wriggling. Use the towel to wrap it around your chicken’s body to avoid any unnecessary movements. Leave either the left or the right part of her wings free.

c. Spread the wing displaying the entire feather section that needs cutting. The feathers must be the primary ones. From the tip of the longest wing feather, estimate at least 5 inches then start cutting at that point. Use very sharp scissors so that the process will not be that agonizing for your chicken to take.

d. You know you’re done if you see that the clipped wings are already on ground and the remaining ones are aligned in proportion. In cases of mistakes, mistakes that made your chicken bleed profusely, either call the vet and ask for an advice or rush her to the nearest animal clinic for treatment.

Stop losing your chickens to predators.  Find Out More

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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