Author Topic: Leg bands for tracking breeding  (Read 5010 times)

Rebecca G Howie

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Leg bands for tracking breeding
« on: January 12, 2016, 09:11:59 AM »
I only have a few chickens but already sometimes I have to look back and figure the ages of some of the girls.

I am looking at using the colored, numbered leg bands to document and track my Wheaten Bantams and eventually the Lavenders. I don't want to do punches.

Who uses leg bands and what ones do you like the best. There seem to be a few styles out there. I want to track the origin, mating, and notes on a spreadsheet of the birds. By the middle of the year I will have Wheaten hens from 3 sources.

Any guidance welcome.

Temple DaSilva

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2016, 09:18:57 AM »
Hi Rebecca,

I start with the super tiny colored zip ties and when the birds are a few weeks old, add the American Bantam Association legbands.  The colored zip ties are a quick ID for me and the ABA bands are great as they are permanent, include the hatch year and a unique number.  I actually just replace the zip ties as they grow since I come to know the birds by their zip tie colors.  I can't bring myself to toe punch nor do I trust my proficiency at it.

-temple in CT

Rebecca G Howie

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2016, 12:19:19 PM »
Thanks Temple,

Tiny zip ties are great. I use them for quail and chicks, also. The ABA bands are really nice.
I used to breed horses and am really anal about who came from where and which one produced which. So far I know each hens eggs and write the name on it.

When hatching chicks I am usually standing over the 'bater for each to emerge. Thank goodness I have a small flock!!

Becky

Temple DaSilva

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2016, 02:12:22 PM »
Hi Becky,

I bred dogs so I hear you on being a bit crazy about pedigrees.  I actually started and maintain the only online international pedigree database for my rare breed of dog.  But you have one up on me knowing which hen laid which egg!  Now that my husband built me a chicken condo for breeding/conditioning, I hope to rise to your level of geneology obsession!

Best,
-temple

Tailfeathers

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2016, 07:53:02 AM »
Why don't ya wanna toe-punch?  That's all I do.  I can tell ya from having put leg bands on birds that I pick out to take for a show that they can and do get them off somehow.
God Bless,

R. E. Van Blaricome
Seek Ye first the Kingdom of God, and all His Righteousness
- then these things shall be added unto you (Matt. 6:33)

Beth Curran

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2016, 12:58:52 PM »
I do not recommend numbered plastic bandettes alone - I lost an entire year of record keeping because they either broke, pulled off, or the numbers rubbed off of them. I tried everything including, but not limited to: bandettes, rigid spiral bands, NPIP bands (which come off if you look at them), rubber bands, zip ties, nail polish (yes, I'm serious), tattooing, and wings bands. Of them all, wing bands are the best I've found for growing birds. I've used them for about 4 years or so and out of hundreds used I've had less than a half dozen come off. The downside is you have to catch the bird and dig through feathers to read them, and for that reason I use aluminum butt-end bands once they are finished growing. It might be worth it for convenience to use bandettes on growing birds for quick ID but I would definitely use a more permanent form of ID in conjunction with them.

I strongly recommend toe punching as well. I do that to track breeding groups, while the bands identify individual birds. All bands fail sometimes, and with the toe punch you may not know which bird it is but you will at least know who it's parents were. The only thing more frustrating than getting a bird with a serious defect and not knowing who produced it is getting a really great bird and having no idea how to do it again.   ???
Beth Curran

Suki

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2016, 04:18:51 PM »
Hi Beth == .  Looking at butt-end bands I can see why you want until they are fully grown -- it seems you need an applicator for each size.
https://nationalband.com/bird-band-applicators-style-number-1242s/ 

I never tried the bandettes either, https://nationalband.com/products/plastic-banettes-907/  though they do look sturdier than the spiral jobs I use.https://nationalband.com/products/plastic-spiral-bands-2104-2116-2/

Thanks for the info.

Beth Curran

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2016, 05:51:10 PM »
Yes, and the butt end bands don't give so you would have to be really careful about not letting them get too tight. And although I've removed and reused them, they aren't really designed for that and it's a pain to do, so I don't put them unless I'm pretty sure it will be there for life.

The bandettes are good for quick reference because the numbers are big and easy to read, and they expand some as they grow, and if they do get too tight they'll usually break before they do any damage. Just don't trust them to stay on. Or the numbers to stay on them.  :-\
Beth Curran

Rebecca G Howie

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #8 on: January 24, 2016, 09:20:51 PM »
Thank you, good info about the types of bands. Still debating what to use. With my small flock, zip ties are still working but not for long if my girls get busy and start laying.

Rebecca G Howie

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #9 on: January 25, 2016, 10:30:35 AM »
Why don't ya wanna toe-punch?  That's all I do.  I can tell ya from having put leg bands on birds that I pick out to take for a show that they can and do get them off somehow.

I am not opposed to toe punching, in fact I may order a punch and try it. I like the idea of looking over a group of birds and quickly knowing which they are by a band. Have a few that are almost alike, until I do a closer look.

Suki

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #10 on: January 26, 2016, 12:43:53 PM »
Well  Rebecca here's a nice jpg to show you the combinations.

http://www.ultimatefowl.com/wiki/index.php?title=Toe_Punch_Chart

John W Blehm

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #11 on: January 26, 2016, 01:43:02 PM »
Also here is a link to an older topic just about "Toe Punch"...
http://ameraucanaalliance.org/forum/index.php?topic=31.0

Rebecca G Howie

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2016, 08:37:48 PM »
Thank you Beth and John, great points. I will probably use a combination of both methods. I printed the chart already. I have 12 eggs in the hatcher, including 3 Wheaten Bantam eggs and looking forward to chicks from John this spring.

Suki

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Re: Leg bands for tracking breeding
« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2016, 01:45:31 PM »
A friend from another Club, recommend elastic legbands for newly hatched chicks.