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Thread: Opening release pens

  1. #1

    Opening release pens

    When will you guys start letting your poults out of the pens and start feeding into the drives?

  2. #2
    We don't even have our poults yet!!!!

    End of this month.

  3. #3
    our poults came last week, some are almost fully grown, they come and go as the like as we dont net the pen.

  4. #4
    Unless your pens are totally secure (roof netted) the releasing of poults really starts the sec you let them out the cases into the pens. I usually open the case side doors and leave the pen to allow the young birds to leave the cases as they are ready. If you do otherwise the poults are liable to fly up, over the top of the pen and off. What you are trying to achieve is getting the birds to realise that the pen represents safety.
    If you pens are ready for release eg feeders/water are in place best to leave the pen alone for a few days to allow the birds to settle.
    When you do go back do so quietly looking for birds that have escaped. Open your pop holes and slowly herd them back in. Keep at this practice for a good few days (a few times a day) till the birds have established themselves (if your pen is correctly placed hopefully this will happen) and you can leave the pop holes open. Thereafter allow them to wander further afield but maintain regular patrols sending your birds back in the general direction of the pen (dogging in). As your birds wander from the pens get your feeders out attracting them to the areas you want them to frequent (your drives).

    In preparing your pens if there are branches overhanging the fence cut these back. Poults have a habit of going up to roost, working their way along the branch and when coming down in the morning landing outside the pen.

  5. #5
    This does not apply if the poults are wing clipped! I assume the pen is a decent size and not on a steep hillside!
    Release in to pen quietly and without fuss. if they do fly they will only go a few yards and drop in, you may get a few drop ouside but these will soon be called back in through the pop holes. Leave them a couple of weeks then open up and let them find their way out. They will not go far and will do much better feeding on natural feed than pellets alone.
    Years ago i used to clip and try to hold them in as long as possible. I have much better results letting them out ASAP. They can fly to roost and the biggest advantage is they avoid gapes etc: Do provide a ready supply of water,(more important than food), As has been said dog them back towards the pen a few times a day.

  6. #6
    It depends year on year I try to keep them in for two to three weeks, unlike lot of people I prefer them not to be clipped
    Start to feed outside the pen as soon as some are out once around half of them are out I will open up the pen, I train them to the whistle to call them in or you can rattle a bucket or whatever as long as they get used to it only any good if you can spend the time to hand feed every day, holds them better, but not as wild as hopper fed, I wean them on to hoppers before shooting starts.

  7. #7
    We do have roof netting & our pop holes are closed down tight, we will start to release mid September.

    Hopper feed from then on.

    Life should be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving skidding in sideways, Merlot in one hand, Cigar in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming WOO HOO what a ride!

  8. #8
    never had roof netting on a phezy pen or even heard of it round our way .have net only on our partridge pens ,as for pop holes always leave em open so if they flutter over early morning they can get back in and avoid charlie ,buzzard ect ,even clipped they can still flutter my big pen is 600 m perimeter 1/3 wood 1/3 double hedge 1/3 rough grass ,try and keep birds to pen for 3wks or so then feed to covers via the hedge rows diffcult with wild food everywhere once TRAINED up lol the pen seems to be the roost for most of the birds till we start and shoot they then spread all over the shoot ,we dont shoot the pen till mid jan
    regards norma

  9. #9
    I know I'm slightly ambushing the topic but can someone please explain to me why you would close a pop hole? I just don't see the point in it ?

  10. #10
    Agreed, you need the pop holes to be open from the word go. Strangely, poults when first released seem to go through the pop holes much easier than when they are going "over the top" and once they have started they are much easier to get back in.

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