A couple quick questions (1st time chicken owner)

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by FoxRiverRat, Jun 16, 2016.

  1. FoxRiverRat

    FoxRiverRat Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi all,

    My 5 eight week old cinnamon queens seem to be doing good, but have a couple things about them that seem odd from what I've read and heard.

    1.) They don't seem to have any interest in eating anything other than their feed. I put a head of lettuce in the run...it goes untouched, spinach, even meal worms just sit there and rot. Why won't my chicks eat anything beside feed? lol What can I do to help them eat all the organic veggies I have for them?!?!?!?!

    2.) They have not gone on their roost yet. it's a 2 x 2 board about 2 feet off the coop floor. They don't use it at all. I'm not even sure if they have looked up to realize it's there. They did have and use a little mini-roost when they were in the brooder. Does it matter if they roost? how can I encourage them to go on it or even find it for that matter lol

    also, when trying to hand feed spinach last night, the little dino's were more interested in pecking my finger than the spinach plant and I swear the "alpha" was trying to step up to me lol. feisty little gals.

    Thanks in advance

    Josh
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016
  2. ejcrist

    ejcrist Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just got my first flock up and running and they're laying eggs now, and they're 6 1/2 months old. So I'm no expert but I noticed a couple of important things while raising them. I'm not sure what type of housing and living conditions yours are in but mine were in a secure coop and run I built when they were 6 weeks old. At first I put their heat lamp in the coop because it was chilly at night, and I was baffled why none of them used the nice roosts I built in their coop. I decided to take the heat lamp out at about week 7 and voila, all of them roosted like little soldiers in formation. So I deduced the heat lamp was keeping them from roosting. I don't know if they liked the extra warmth or they were just accustomed to sleeping under it, but the minute I removed it they no longer had the motivation to sleep under it.

    Regarding the greens, I didn't offer any greens or meal worms to mine until they were about 12 weeks old. I read it was best to keep them on regular feed until about then so they get their complete nutrition. I don't think that's necessarily true because free-range chicks raised outdoors under a hen get other food such as bugs and they seem to do fine. But anyway mine only had feed at first. Then one day I wanted to hang a cabbage in their run because I read it gives them a bit of entertainment and also a varied diet, so I did. At first they were scared of it and wouldn't go near it. I was baffled but figured I'd leave it there and take it down if they hadn't touched it by the next day. Probably an hour went by and still no one touched it but I could tell they were curious about it. I came back about and hour and a half later and it was completely gone. The only thing remaining was the bent hanger I hung it on. So 25 birds consumed it in that short a time. I had a hard time believing they completely ate every morsel so a week later I decided to hang another and watch what happened. Well, I got ambushed just carrying the cabbage into the run. I managed to finally hang it after be swamped by the Paparazzi and immediately the birds went at it like piranha's on a wounded fish. So I wouldn't be too worried if they aren't going at it just yet. If I were you I'd probably wait till they're slightly older to give them greens, but when you do I'd just put it in their run and forget about it. They'll get to it eventually.
     
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  3. TheTwoRoos

    TheTwoRoos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Their only weeks.they may just catch on.Try bread first.My grown hens will only eat Lettuce&Tomatoes.You need to sit them on the roost at night,they'll catch on,trust me.
     
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  4. TheTwoRoos

    TheTwoRoos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Chicks do not even have to be raised under hens to know to eat veggies,BUT it is probably easier to get them to eat veggies with a mom calling them over to eat.
     
  5. Dipsey

    Dipsey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My father got some Australorp's last year at Rural King. All of them huddled in the corner for 16 weeks until I told him to start putting them on the roost at night. After about a week of doing it every night they finally started to get up on the roost by themselves. Also certain veggies they wouldn't eat at first like tomatoes until we would break them open. They would peck at the seeds and eventually eat the whole thing. After awhile they caught on to use their beaks to break them open. Now they know the bowl my mother uses to give them goodies. They get perked up and excited.
     
  6. FoxRiverRat

    FoxRiverRat Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks everyone for the reply's.

    so...I can't really put them on the roost. The way the coop was built I just won't physically be able to place them up there. [​IMG]

    the roost can be seen in the attached pic through the window. I have the big "clean out" door below the window, MAYBE I could manage to place them up there, but I'm not too sure I can. Would there be any other way to entice them to go up there? If I hang something shiny from it to get there attention maybe? If not, and they just never take to it....does it really matter? Thanks again for al the replies!
     
  7. threescompany

    threescompany Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Beautiful coop. I never physically sat my girls on the roost and as I remember it, they were older than 8 weeks before they got the hang of everything. I still have an RIR that prefers the corner of the coop sometimes and it has not been a problem. I think as long as they are not sleeping in the nesting area and pooping it up, they are just doing what they want to and there is no need to worry. Of course , that is just one small flock owner's opinion. I just want the girls to be happy and healthy.
     
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  8. Too2much

    Too2much Just Hatched

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    I started sitting with my chicks in the evening hand feeding them little bits of food, they associate whatever my fingers are holding out for them must be very tasty. I started giving them a pan of mixed vegetables and fruits, now they must have their salad and their special treat time everyday. Of course now I have 7 very large lap chickens with no sense of polite eating habits.
     
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  9. ejcrist

    ejcrist Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Gosh I know what you mean. I've got 25 lap chickens and weigh an extra 100 lbs when I try to get up because they're roosting all over me. And it always ends like this:

    [​IMG]

    Josh - I wouldn't worry about where they want to bed down for the evening unless like 3's Company said, they're roosting in the nest boxes. You wouldn't want them roosting there but anywhere else ain't gonna hurt anything.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016
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  10. pauleberly

    pauleberly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mine would not eat any treat till around 10-12 weeks old. Try red treats. Raspberry, strawberry, maters.

    After I started giving them maters they would verge out to other things. They love steamed brocolli , rice, pork , maters. They are willing to try everything now
     

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