Access to treat block - all the time?

Cypress Fey

Hatching
Jul 18, 2020
5
3
8
Hi!

I'm a newbie, I have neighbors who have a lot of free-ranging chickens and they have inspired me. I will have a coop and enclosure.

My question: If I get a treat block, do I leave it in there with the food all the time? Will they ignore their regular feed and mess up their nutrition if I do? If not, do I put it in for a couple of hours in the afternoons or....(name another suggestion)?

I really like the idea of a treat block for their pecking and scratching entertainment.

Thanks in advance for your help and advice!
 

sourland

Broody Magician
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
May 3, 2009
105,657
250,681
1,887
New Jersey
:welcome I'd play it by ear. If they are overusing the treat block and cutting back on their regular feed, I'd limit their exposure to it.
 

rosemarythyme

Crossing the Road
Jul 3, 2016
11,747
21,709
792
WA, Pac NW
My Coop
Food is not an ideal form of entertainment for chickens, as these treats are higher in fat, not nutritionally optimized, and they may stop eating their regular feed in favor of holding out for treats.

Better entertainment would be perches, other obstacles to go around or on top of, piles of dried leaves or grass or compost to dig through, etc.

The only times I've used flock blocks are on bad winter days where the chickens are choosing to hole up inside the coop, so just to give them something extra to interact with for a couple of days, I may add a block for a few hours.
 

MadamPoofyBrow

Songster
5 Years
Jun 15, 2015
1,383
787
226
I only offer treats when I am out with them, it limits how much they can have and makes them like me more ;) If I didn't do this, they would ignore their food and eat far too many far too fatty treats.
:welcome and good luck with your flock!
 

Cypress Fey

Hatching
Jul 18, 2020
5
3
8
I only offer treats when I am out with them, it limits how much they can have and makes them like me more ;) If I didn't do this, they would ignore their food and eat far too many far too fatty treats.
:welcome and good luck with your flock!
Thank you for your warm welcome! I like the idea of only when I am actually with them. Will probably make it unpredictable too so they don't "hold out" for the treats leaving their feed. Nice to meet you!
 

Cypress Fey

Hatching
Jul 18, 2020
5
3
8
Food is not an ideal form of entertainment for chickens, as these treats are higher in fat, not nutritionally optimized, and they may stop eating their regular feed in favor of holding out for treats.

Better entertainment would be perches, other obstacles to go around or on top of, piles of dried leaves or grass or compost to dig through, etc.

The only times I've used flock blocks are on bad winter days where the chickens are choosing to hole up inside the coop, so just to give them something extra to interact with for a couple of days, I may add a block for a few hours.
(((Thank you))) I'm glad you mentioned the winter idea because I'm in Montana.
 

Cypress Fey

Hatching
Jul 18, 2020
5
3
8
:welcome I'd play it by ear. If they are overusing the treat block and cutting back on their regular feed, I'd limit their exposure to it.
Thank you, and thank you for the warm welcome too. I'm really glad this site exists, I'm learning so much!
 

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