Anything Like This Available?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Orchidsilkie, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. Orchidsilkie

    Orchidsilkie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello BYC!

    As you may already know, my family and I are in the process of getting chickens. There is only one problem. We do not live near any of our friends or relatives, and we do not want to hire someone to take care of our chickens that we do not know. Is there something we can put in the run or coop that will feed the chickens while we are out of town?
     
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    How many chickens and how long would you be leaving the chickens on their own? A few days isn't usually that big of a problem to arrange. Chickens are usually free-fed so you just need a feeder big enough to last them as long as you are gone. Water can be a little tougher (especially in the winter) but the same general idea. It is usually a good idea to have multiple water sources while you are gone in case one leaks or something. There are plenty of plastic or metal feeders and waterers commercially available. Or you can make your own, there are a number of threads on automatic nipple water systems on BYC. Eggs are something else to consider, if you are gone for more than a day or so, you probably want roll-out nests so the eggs don't pile up too much.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2013
  3. mudhen

    mudhen confidently clueless

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    I am thinking that depending on the size of your flock, and if there is electricity available, you may want to check out the automatic pet feeders available. Some hold up to 45 cups or 20# of food.
     
  4. gander007

    gander007 Chicken Obsessed

    You might want to check coop and run design I believe I say something on that earlier some on was using a PVC pipe one pipe went up this held the feed and a short piece running 90 degrees with a stopper on the end and a hole on top for the chickens could access the feed [​IMG]
     
  5. Orchidsilkie

    Orchidsilkie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We would probably have a flock of three to four hens, and we don't usually go away for more than a week. We just want to have all of our T's crossed and I's dotted before we get chickens [​IMG]
     
  6. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Feeders and Waterers big enough for three or four hens should not be a problem, though you want to change water more often than that. But leaving them unattended for a week at a time is rather long, think if something goes wrong. Even if you don't have relatives near, are there any neighbors in the area that would check on the birds in exchange for the eggs? Someone from church, school, vet office etc that could stop by every couple of days?
     
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Sounds like you need to make some new friends [​IMG]

    Seriously, start meeting people now, and when you need to have them watch the birds, they won't be "people we don't know". It's always good to have folks local you can call on in an emergency. Start with co-workers, church members, neighbors, whatever. Local facebook, check byc for local members.
     
  8. LoneOak

    LoneOak Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have homemade feeders made from PVC pipe that when filled will feed 8 to 10 hens for at least a week without having to worry about them at all. I have a 55 gal drum of water plumbed in with auto cup waters that last a month or more without having to be refilled, I live in the south where I seldom have to worry about freezing either.

    You can do a search of this sub forum and find many topics about homemade feeders and waterers. You might just want to search my forum name to begin with to read some of the topics I posted last summer. i would put some pictures here but for some reason the reply editor is not working like it used to and the picture posting option is not showing as being available.
     
  9. Orchidsilkie

    Orchidsilkie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do have a grandmother, but her arthritis limits what she can do. Maybe someone might be able to stop by every few days, but they probably will not be able to stay the entire week just to take care of the chickens.
     
  10. chiknhurder

    chiknhurder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feed generally isn't a problem but water is. There are some covered water systems (to keep dirt and other debris out) with automatic top off that keeps a clean, fresh supply of water at all times. As others have mentioned, having a large enough feeder to hold the amount of feed they'll consume during your time away is all that's needed. Another important thing is having someone to lock them in their coop and let them out each morning.
     

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