At how much food chicks eat!! We bought 100lbs of chick feed for 36 chick, and I thought for sure that would be way too much. Now I don't think it will be at all!
I am amazed.....
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What sort of feeders are you using and are you feeding dry, soaked or fermented? There can be a LOT Of feed waste that contributes to an appearance of massive consumption.
I am using one of the long rectangular plastic feeder trays with the peaked top and the double row of oval holes.
Just dry chick starter crumbles.
I actually wasn't referring to any specific quantity of consumed feed so far...we've only had them for less than 48 hours! LOL. It was just an observation that they are either sleeping under the warmer, or eating! Eating seems to be the only thing they do when not sleeping. I guess that's better than not eating though, right?
It is amazing how much those little bodies can take in - but when you see how rapidly they grow and change (literally daily changes in development, feathering, size, etc) you'll understand where all that food goes. It's hard to believe but those little puff balls will be fully feathered miniature chickens in just a few weeks!
With the feeder you are using you will start to see bedding, waste, etc getting into the feed and their feet and beaks throwing feed out (they reach through the holes to scratch instinctively) so raising it up can help to prevent both issues -- I place all my feed and water stations on an elevated surface (wood or stone blocks work great) and raise them as the birds grow to keep the rim at about chest height. Soaking feed is a great way to ensure good hydration as well as cut down on the birds flinging feed into the bedding - I offer dry crumble 24/7 but also offer a tray of soaked feed 2-3 times a day as a treat. The soaked feed is definitely seen as something better than the dry crumble. There are those who take it a step further and ferment their feed and report less feed being needed for better results overall, not something I've ventured into yet.
Meant to add - the peaked top of the feeder is also attractive as a potential roosting spot for chicks - resulting in lots of feces being dropped into the feeding openings. Adding an alternate roost pole in the brooder will help to lead them to a more desirable place to roost.