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How much should I feed my laying hens

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 

I have 6 hens in my yard and don't know for sure how much to feed them I been feeding laying pellets with corn chucks one little coffee can a day  but they are not laying right am I not feeding them enough or what. Thank you god bless

post #2 of 22
I fill a feeder with mash and they eat what they want, you can do that and then estimate how much the consume daily-there you have it.-
post #3 of 22

How old are the hens?

Are they free-ranging?

 

I leave food available for my chickens at all times, they eat as much as they want - if they are layers, they will not overeat.

Poop Cleaner Extraordinaire...

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Poop Cleaner Extraordinaire...

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post #4 of 22

A laying bird, with little natural environment from which to gather free range sustenance, will easily consume 1/4 to 1/3 pound of feed, per day.  If your hens look fat and happy, you're likely doing OK by them.  If they seem ravenous and there is a feeding frenzy each time you feed, and they choke and gobble up every bit in seconds, you're likely under feeding.  Why not put out 2 coffee cans of feed in the morning, in a trough feeder of some kind, and see if they've eaten all of it by night fall?  That's the easiest way to determine how much they themselves wish to intake.

 

 

Practicing Sustainable Agriculture At The 45th Parallel

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Practicing Sustainable Agriculture At The 45th Parallel

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post #5 of 22

To encourage my chickens eating, I have this recipe of "good stuff". It's a mixture of kitten food, sunflower seed, Calf Manna, race horse oats, and oyster shell. I have heard lots of posts saying that "Cat food isn't good for chickens!" well guess what, I've been feeding my chickens kitten food for over 2 years now, and nothing bad has happened, their feathers are healthier also. 

 

I'm not sure if you have Calf Manna around your area, but that's okay. 

 

So what I do is I pour 1 quart of cat food in a big container, same with the sunflower seed, racehorse oats and Calf Manna. Put 4 handfuls of oyster shell in the container. Then you mix it up real well. After that you're going to put 1-2 quart of the mix per 25lbs. 

 

The mix with the food encourages eating, strong egg shells, and healthy feathers. After I started doing this they ate more, and water would soak through their feathers as much as if you didn't feed them the mix. 

 

What you're feeding is fine, some chickens could still not be laying, but I'm just recommending this, it's healthy for them. smile.png

Good luck~

 

It's the shape that makes the breed, and the color that makes the variety.

 

  -- -- Spa Days for Chickens -- --

 

 

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It's the shape that makes the breed, and the color that makes the variety.

 

  -- -- Spa Days for Chickens -- --

 

 

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post #6 of 22
My girls have food available at all times. My feeder holds over 50#'s of feed.

I let them free range everyday for bugs and worms. Yesterday they were finding the biggest beetle larvae. Bleh! They hit the jackpot of bugs, larvae and army worms.

They eat less feed the longer I let them free range. My girls are very thick and healthy looking. They always have full crops during the day.
post #7 of 22

I have little baby chicks, on chicken crumble.  Should I just leave clean fresh food out for them all the time?   My question is because I was ready that they shouldn't over eat because of leg problems when growing.  I'm unsure what to do but the seem hungry

post #8 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcappy2 View Post

I have little baby chicks, on chicken crumble.  Should I just leave clean fresh food out for them all the time?   My question is because I was ready that they shouldn't over eat because of leg problems when growing.  I'm unsure what to do but the seem hungry

 If they are meat birds that is the case.  Layers or dual purpose don't have that problem.  I like to give my chicks a little more than they will eat in a day.  So in effect I leave food for them all the time.

Den
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Den
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post #9 of 22

We are thinking about buyi g chickens.  What do I need to know especically how much do they eat and about how much.  carol

post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by george10 View Post

We are thinking about buyi g chickens.  What do I need to know especically how much do they eat and about how much.  carol

 

Hi Carol, welcome to Backyard Chickens!  If there is any place that can answer your questions it would be here.

 

Check out the Learning Center here:  http://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center

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