THE CIRCUMSTANCE: I currently have 4 RIR's and they have a pretty large run for them to pick around all day. THE QUESTION: I want to know if i can feed them by hand instead of using the feeder that I currently have (where they get food all day)? and if so about how much feed should i spread out per bird (not including scraps) THE CAUSE: the local wild birds are eating all of my feed. Dozens and dozens are feeding everyday, and i have done everything and i mean everything to try and thwart their efforts to no avail, putting the feeder in the coop is not an option due to the setup that i have. MY PROPOSED SOLUTION: So i was thinking may be if i just feed them by hand twice a day the chickens will eat just when i put out the food and free range the rest of the day. Any suggestions or experiences are greatly appreciated. THANKS in advance. PS: i also have 5 Plymoth Rock chicks that i will place with my reds in about 2 months.