How much food?
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We have seven hens and one drake all are 5-7 months old and at least two of the hens are laying. One Pekin, two Cayugas, one Rouen, three Welsh Harlequins (one is the drake) and one White Layer. They are in a 1100 sq ft pen during the day and in their house at night (they have no access to food at night). They are eating us out of house and home and I was wondering if this is normal. They are fed layers crumbles. Every time we go outside they come to the fence quacking wanting us to feed them more food, we give them more and they gobble all that up too. Just wondering approx. how much they should be eating? Thanks!
Do they have access to foraging during the day? and you have to also take into account laying eggs takes up alot of energy so food is a must.
You could try putting feed out in the morning for around 30-45 mins then again in late afternoon for same amount of time before closing them up for the night. You'll have to make sure to watch for any egg laying issues like soft shell and if your ducks begin to lose weight. unless you think they are over weight. I keep feed out all the time during the day even though mine are able to forage on a half acre. Yep they eat alot. I have 8 ducks/ 4 geese and 13 chickens. In colder weather this may not be a good idea since lots of bugs will be non existent.
- Overrun with Runners
How much are they eating now? I mean, how many pounds of food per day? Per week?
Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks recommends 0.4 to 0.6 pounds of food per duck per day, for adult ducks that are of laying age, in the size ranges you have. That's 22 pounds (at the 0.4 rate) per week for your flock.
Edited by Amiga - 10/2/15 at 6:46pm
Have you tried giving them pellets instead? One thing I don't like about crumbles other than for bitty babies is that you tend to have a lot more waste than with pellets. Also, do you give them healthy scraps of stuff from your kitchen that you'd otherwise throw away anyway like the trimmings off veggies and fruits? I do not mean any offense by that, so please don't take it that way. Many of the women I know don't cook at home and eat out or get takeout all the time and don't like being asked about scraps from cooking. It's fine if you don't have those, and I don't mean the question to be offensive.