Am I feeding my chickens enough?HELP!!!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by chickcrazzy, Sep 4, 2014.

  1. chickcrazzy

    chickcrazzy Out Of The Brooder

    53
    0
    41
    May 17, 2014
    Usa
    Am I feeding them enough? I give them 3 ounces of layers feed in the morning 3 in the evening and 3 before they go to sleep. I let them free range in my large backyard (4 acres) and give them my organic table scraps. But I'm wandering if theire eating enough, how much should a normal sized chicken eat? And btw they have a couple more days till they end a molt ;) hope all this info helps and I would love to hear all your answeres and sugestions :) thank you [​IMG]
     
  2. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

    17,018
    5,307
    501
    Mar 9, 2014
    Oregon
    My Coop
    Do you mean three ounces total or 3 ounces per bird? Are they eating everything you give them immediately and looking for more or do they pick at it, it last them a bit and they aren't acting like starving at the next feeding? Are you opposed to free feeding?
    What is the current body condition of your birds? How old are they?
     
  3. chickcrazzy

    chickcrazzy Out Of The Brooder

    53
    0
    41
    May 17, 2014
    Usa
    They are very healthy and act just like all my other friends chickens do. I check them every day, the eyes, under the wings, feet, etc. I feed them 9 ounces total- 3 oz in the morning 3 in the afternoon and 3 before they go to sleep. The ages range from 5 months to about 2 years. 9 of them are 1 1/2 3 are 2 1/4 8 are 5 months, about to start laying. They do fight over food but only if its like only 1 apple then they all want some. But they don't act "STARVING".
     
  4. pdirt

    pdirt Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,612
    196
    198
    May 11, 2013
    Eastern WA
    Still not sure if you're feeding 9 ounces a day to your ENTIRE flock or is that 9 ounces of feed PER bird?

    If that's for the entire flock, that is probably a tad on the low side of feed amount, but since they have 4 acres for 22 birds to free range upon, it's probably more than enough.

    If you're feeding 9oz a day per bird AND free ranging, then I'd say you're definitely overfeeding. Some chickens will act like they are starving when they're crops are bulging full. That's a good thing to look for when they go to bed...are their crops looking full?

    It also depends upon genetics...some chickens are more accustomed to formulated feed and others still have more of the natural desire to forage. We have some chickens that won't leave the feeder (if we leave it open) all day whereas some have a snack of feed and then spend most of the day foraging.
     
  5. chickcrazzy

    chickcrazzy Out Of The Brooder

    53
    0
    41
    May 17, 2014
    Usa
    For the Third time I'm feeding them 9 oz for all of them! And I have only 20 chickens not 22, but thanks for the help :)
     
  6. chickcrazzy

    chickcrazzy Out Of The Brooder

    53
    0
    41
    May 17, 2014
    Usa
    Oh and yes I check there crops and they look pretty full to me during feeding time.
     
  7. pdirt

    pdirt Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,612
    196
    198
    May 11, 2013
    Eastern WA
    Sounds good then. If their crops are full, they are surely getting enough to eat, and most likely balanced nutrition, especially if they get a varied diet from the foraging.

    For the record, I've found that especially on BYC it is way too easy to misunderstand folks. I mean, if you and I were in the same room, we'd both be able to read body language and I would have likely completely gotten that you mean 9oz total for the entire flock. However, with this online format, I was left scratching my head, when you said, "I feed them 9 ounces total- 3 oz in the morning 3 in the afternoon and 3 before they go to sleep." I wasn't sure if that meant 9 ounces total (for the entire flock) or 9 ounces total (per bird). I know YOU know what you meant, but I was unclear! I have at times started writing a response to a friend via email or someone on the BYC forum here and left it unfinished and came back later. When I came back later, I would re-read what I had written and sometimes, I thought, "This is good" (press send) and other times, "Aaagh! That's not what I meant to convey whatsoever!" (And I re-wrote it before sending).

    Happy chickening :)
     
  8. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,384
    305
    148
    Jun 10, 2014
    The typical recommendation is 4-6 oz per adult bird, per day. Or, for 20 birds, 5-7lbs a day. Free ranging certainly cuts down on that, but I can't see 9 oz being enough.

    I've got 16 free range birds of a smaller breed (about 5lbs each), and they go through a couple lbs a day.
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

    17,018
    5,307
    501
    Mar 9, 2014
    Oregon
    My Coop
  10. earlyredrooster

    earlyredrooster Chillin' With My Peeps

    448
    60
    128
    Apr 19, 2014
    Harrisburg, Ar
    From what I'm reading here I may be over feeding. I have thirty-three chickens and five ducks. Every morning I give them a gallon jug of laying pellets, a half-gallon jug of scratch, two quarts of fruited yogurt and a half gallon of butter-milk. They free-range all day, then about four-thirty they get a gallon jug of cracked corn, the yogurt and two quarts of cottage cheese plus any table scraps we may have. Now with harvest just starting around here I plan to add several fresh grains to the menu.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by