4-H Chick Chain hosts Showmanship Clinic

Published 3:52 pm Wednesday, June 16, 2021

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On June 15, the Chilton County 4-H hosted a Showmanship Clinic for its Chick Chain participants at the Chilton Research and Extension Center.

The participants in the 4-H Chick Chain program received 10, three-day-old chicks that they have been responsible for raising since April 6. They had to provide brooding boxes and coops for the birds to live in, and have places for them to scratch, roost and nest, according to Janet Lovelady, regional extension agent.

The students are also required to receive their Youth for the Quality Care of Animals certification and prepare their birds for the show and auction on Sept. 11. This clinic was designed to show them how to train and clean their birds, according to Thomas Elliot.

“I think I will have them trained really well,” Elliot said about his chickens. “Buddy, (his rooster), will jump on my arm when I hold it out and sometimes he’ll jump on my shoulder.”

While perching on their owners is not part of the show, it does mean Elliot’s chickens are very comfortable around him. According to Lovelady, the birds will have to walk across a table, pose and be comfortable with the participants handling them.

MaryElla Bailey said that she was unsure of how well trained her birds will be for the show, but that one of her chickens learns quickly.

“I have one that will come when we tap on something, so we named it Tap,” Bailey said. “It learns faster than the other ones, Tap already knows how to roost on my hand and on the rails.”

For more information about the Chick Chain Project or the show on Sept. 11, contact Janet Lovelady at lovelj1@auburn.edu or 256-284-3572.