Tuesday, February 19, 2013

chicken or poultry crook

chicken crook

    No, it's not a person who steals chickens. It's something that I have noticed most people do not seem to know about. And although I enjoy watching people chase chickens all over the place, I think it's time to clue you in on an easier way of catching chickens or poultry. 

    Chicken crooks have been around for as long as sheep crooks or shepherds crooks have been around. In the days before fencing was invented, chickens and turkeys were herded much like any other livestock. My father would tell me stories of getting up before the sun came up in order to herd a couple hundred turkeys into the alfalfa fields during the day. Then before the sun would set he would herd the turkeys back to the roost. This was an 8 foot tall 10 foot wide ladder that the turkeys would sleep on at night, to keep away from the coyotes. My father would complain that sometimes he had to climb the roost and pretend to be a Turkey, in order to convince the turkeys that this is where they needed to go to sleep. From time to time he would have to use the crook to catch a few stray turkeys and physically put them on the roost. Trying to catch poultry on a large farm would have been impossible without the use of a crook.

    The all metal crook on the left has been in the family for almost 100 years. The steel crook has a finger width gap and is constructed from a light rebar that is about pencil thickness (1/4”). The one on the right is one that I made from a mop handle and some heavy steel wire (1/8 to 3/16”) wire. This crook has a Pencil sized gap but because it is more flexible it can be used on a variety of chicken sizes.

   Unlike sheep crooks which are used around the neck, these crooks are used to snare one of the legs of the chicken. You will also find that you can use this device in tight quarters where a net would not be an option. 

1 comment:

  1. Guess I'll have to make one. I was hoping I would find one already made but apparently not. My grandfather had a really nice one but I have no idea where it went when he had to retire from the ranch.