4.5 week old freedom rangers- not eating grass

speedy2782

Hatching
7 Years
Oct 15, 2012
8
0
7
I brooded 31 freedom rangers indoors and placed them in the tractor 3 days ago. They are not eating the grass. It is lush and about 3-4" tall. Are there ways to train them to eat it?
Should I hold their feed rations until they get hungry enough to eat the grass?
Place clippings in their feed trough?
Hold each chickens head to a blade a grass and yell "EAT IT"?
Much thanks,
Ben

PS: I threw a few worms in their and they were afraid of them. and did not eat them. Chickens...
 

Elke Beck

Songster
8 Years
Jun 24, 2011
444
109
186
Sunny So Cal
Chickens are like toddlers, if they don't recognize it then they think it is yucky and won't eat it. Try mixing some grass into a mash of chick starter and hot water. Also, if you have an older chicken that won't beat up the youngsters, you can put that bird in to show them how its done.
 

coloradoalice

In the Brooder
8 Years
Dec 21, 2011
54
3
33
Give them a few days. Mine didn't eat grass at first either but once they weren't so freaked out at the new surroundings they got curious and now they munch at it. They are still wayyyy more about their feed than the grass though. It's what they have been eating since they hatched, I can't really blame them.
 

Life is Good!

Songster
9 Years
Apr 14, 2011
1,179
227
236
suburbia Chicagoland
Our tractor is big enough for me to 'join them' and sit in there with them. So one fine day, I sat (on a mat!) and had feed in one hand, grass in the other - I kept switching which hand was underneath their beaks....they figured it out really quickly at that point!
Same with worms - similar technique, but by then, the chicks understood I was the food provider - and life was GOOD!
 

Mingming

Chirping
7 Years
Feb 15, 2012
239
5
93
NJ
I don't know. I've heard meat chickens are dumb as ice-cubes, and I've found that to be true. I started putting bread at their feet so they'd peck the grass and get used to it - and they'd stare up at me starving, with bread surrounding their feet. I thought if I did it first thing in the morning when they hadn't eaten for about 12 hours - they'd figure it out.... but Nooooo.

It had gotten to the point that my layers would make a bee-line for their coop when I let everyone out to free-play because they knew all the treats were in their coop sitting around. If it's not in the food tray, they're not eating it! They enjoy running around after my daughter for some reason, though!

 

farmer boy

Songster
7 Years
Jul 5, 2012
1,229
15
131
Canada,NB,River Glade
my chicks i brought them out at a few days old and i was peaking the grass with my fingers and making noises trying to get them to eat and they did and i had other chicks that hadn't gone outside before and i put them with my chicks thats been outside for a while and they showed the other chicks what to do
 

SIMZ

Crowing
10 Years
Apr 29, 2011
2,168
229
281
Northwest Indiana
We've never had red rangers, but our cornish X eventually catch on to the grass after a few days or so. I've found that if I don't start giving them treats right from the start that they tend to be scared of any food other then their usual feed in the trough. The same is true for foraging......the chicks started with treats early do a much better job of foraging.
 

bwmichaud

Chirping
9 Years
Jul 19, 2010
155
7
91
I feed both Cornish X and Freedom Rangers 12 hours on and 12 hours off and they eat lots of grass during the 12 hours when there is no feed. It just takes them a day or so to figure out it's food.
 

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