Chicken camp 2

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Chicken camp 2

Post by Lorraine on Mon Apr 06, 2015 9:35 am

I've just spent a great weekend at the second of three workshops arranged at the Oxfordshire Animal Behaviour Centre, and taught by Chirag Patel.  If you ever get the chance to see him speak or teach, he is a wonderful teacher and great human being.  We were developing on the skills we learnt at the last workshop, by teaching chickens we were learning the skills for clicker training dogs (or any other animal for that matter).

Again, we had two chickens each with a different task.  We taught all our hens to come out onto our hands to work on the table.  My first hen was Black Beauty.  She was a little shy, and needed a lot of coaxing as she had not worked before.  Her task was to peck at the white dot on a target, on cue of a red light.  It took me 2.5 days to get her pecking at the target on the table, but eventually got her reliably pecking the target, so moved it up, and added the laser.  She got distracted by laying an egg just before this video clip, so she'd forgotten what she'd learned temporarily, but got there in the end:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=La37HUlrni4

Red Rum was my other girl, and she learnt very quickly, and did everything at 100 miles per hour!  Her task was to circle around two bottles placed on the table.  She got it very quickly, and was doing it easily by the second day.  That made me overconfident with her, and I pushed her too fast, and didn't consolidate our learning - so we'd gone backwards on the third day.  Videoing our training allows us to see our own mistakes, and here you can see that I inadvertently signal when I'm about to click and treat by leaning forward - I wasn't even aware of it until I watched it back:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsbxbdEAtWk

There are places on the level one course if anyone is interested: http://www.oabc.org.uk/seminars/practical-training-skills-workshops-for-dog-trainers-and-behaviourists/
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Re: Chicken camp 2

Post by Shisa on Mon Apr 06, 2015 12:05 pm

Amazing what you can teach a chicken isn't it?
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Re: Chicken camp 2

Post by tracyp on Mon Apr 06, 2015 1:06 pm

That is trully amazing!
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Re: Chicken camp 2

Post by Lorraine on Mon Apr 06, 2015 5:08 pm

Thanks both - I can't wait to see what we've got to teach them at level three!
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Re: Chicken camp 2

Post by Eleanor on Tue Apr 07, 2015 2:43 pm

That sounds really interesting! happy I love chickens love

I'd love to be able to do that. Money and exams wouldn't allow me at the moment, but thanks for the link! happy
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Re: Chicken camp 2

Post by Caryll on Tue Apr 07, 2015 3:17 pm

Absolutely fascinating!

I'm also looking forward to the level 3!

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Re: Chicken camp 2

Post by Lorraine on Tue Apr 07, 2015 5:39 pm

Thanks both happy
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