Am I overfeeding?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by billmac, Oct 12, 2009.

  1. billmac

    billmac Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2009
    I have 12 Rhode Island Red hens who have been laying (first time) for about a month. Besides, grit, shells, and some veggie scraps, they are fed Agway Layer Pellets.

    It seems to me that they are eating a lot now. They are going through about 16 cups of the pellets per day.

    Does that seem like a lot? I looked up Agway Layer pellets online and it says specifically not to give them scratch grain in combination with the pellets. I was hoping to cheapen my feed costs a little without sacrificing their nutritional needs.

    Thanks
     
  2. rdranch

    rdranch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are you sure that they are eating all that food and not billing it out? Sometimes they can be quite the little pigs when feeding, meaning more food falls to the ground than gets in their mouths. If that's the case then raise the feeder to just lower than head high. [​IMG]
     
  3. billmac

    billmac Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2009
    I don't notice a lot of stuff on the ground. Wouldn't they just eat it off the ground?

    Does that seem like a lot of feed for 12 hens that are laying?
     
  4. rdranch

    rdranch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Food that falls to the ground will likely get eaten. I have read on the forum here that layers need about 5 oz. of feed per day so I don't think they are over fed. Also is there any chance mice or other critters are eating the food? Maybe wild birds.
     
  5. cnj-tx50

    cnj-tx50 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 19, 2009
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    I have notice since it is beginning to get a little cooler here mine have been eating more and I have 3 gallon feeder that is hung and I feed crumbles. I was only having to refill this about every 3 to 4 days and it's everyother day. So I am assuming that the weather and the fact there seem to be fewer critters for them that they are eating more.
     
  6. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    If they're spilling and you can't raise the feeder for some reason, take it off of them for a couple hours. They'll clean up their spills [​IMG]
     
  7. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Overrun With Chickens

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    My Coop
    I have 12 Australorps in one pen and they eat anywhere from 5-6 oz each per day. Plus whatever scraps I give them. I also throw them a little scratch daily.
     
  8. jjconcepts

    jjconcepts Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 24, 2009
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    They don't sound over fed, and I don't believe they will overeat. Mine did eat alot when they first started laying.. They also can keep a lot in their crop. I think you are going through a lot of food because of so many birds - but most people I know just fill the feeder once a week or every few days and the birds have at it when they are hungry..I don't recall ever hearing about an overweight bird.

    are they meat or just eggs... I am naot familiar with the breed but know there is a meat bird diet and a layer diet..

    they sound fine

    -joe-
     
  9. billmac

    billmac Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2009
    Thanks everyone. Rhode Island Reds are primarily laying birds.
     
  10. rstampa

    rstampa Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Unlike dogs, chickens know when they are full. Don't worry, they do eat a lot more then most people think they do.
    Your doing just fine. If they are at laying age I would worry about giving them some extra treats including scratch. But just enough that they will eat it all in about a minute.
    At least that's what I do. It doesn't seem to stunt them in anyway.[​IMG]
     

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