I've gotten back into chickens after a few years absence and I seem to have lost the touch!
I have 5 girls who should be close to laying - the lady who I got them from was fairly non-specific about the age and I have now had them for 8 weeks. The younger ones I've also had for 8 weeks were 6 to 9 weeks old, the youngest being 6 weeks. Total of 10 pullets and one rooster. They are all together in a large chicken house which is new, built from all recycled materials, and in an area where chickens haven't ever lived before. My problem is they just don't seem to be thriving. I have a large self feeder with Dumor layer pellets which they won't touch, and smaller feeder with Dumor grower crumbles which they nibble at. I've been supplementing their food with lots of veggie and fruit scrapes and also soaking their crumbles and pellets together with scratch which they like, however at anytime I can pick one up and her crop is empty. The younger ones do look better than the older batch. Two of the older ones are, well, just dummies! I can throw treats and they are just too slow to react and always miss out. Is there an IQ test for chickens? Lol.
Any suggestions? A good worming, perhaps? Or maybe I'm just being too 'mother hen-ish'?