Chickens don’t fly as well as other birds, but they can flap their wings enough to carry them over low walls and fences. If you have chickens in your backyard and you don’t want them escaping or getting lost, or worse in trouble with an angry dog or some other predator, then clipping the chickens wing is a must.
The more regularly you handle your chickens, the easier it will be to catch them. For some chickens this may not be an issue. For first timers, this will be a little challenging.
This is probably the first question you will ask yourself… Does wing clipping hurt ?
No …. Not if it’s done correctly. You need to be sure you are cutting the proper feathers while avoiding the secondary feathers or coverts.
If able to, aim to cut just below the smaller feathers that overlap the primary feathers and don’t take more than 6cm off. Remember; it is only necessary to trim one of the chicken’s wings, doing both will serve no useful purpose. The theory behind just one wing is that the bird will be thrown off balance enough by having just one smaller wing, that their flight capabilities will be drastically limited.
Clipping a chicken’s wings won’t really prevent it from flying, but will prevent it from flying as high because their flying won’t be as controlled anymore. Chickens don’t normally go into full flight to roost, so, it doesn’t affect their ability to roost at all.