1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Chickens appear to not be eating from feeder and pecking each other

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by jimmyneutrontx, Dec 28, 2010.

  1. jimmyneutrontx

    jimmyneutrontx New Egg

    4
    0
    7
    Dec 23, 2010
    I am new to raising chickens and need some help in figuring out how much to feed them. I have 6 all white hens (California White). At no time do they free range. I am currently getting an average of 5 eggs per day. They are getting fed Layena crumbles and chicken scratch mixed together in a hanging feeder which is currnetly full and has been for a few days. The problems is that 3 of my flock have lost feathers around their vents and tail feathers. They do no appear to have mites, but I have noticed them pecking at each other. I'm wondering if they are no longer going to the the feeder so yesterday I piled up there food inside the coop and they all attacked it like they hadn't eatten in a while.
    I wonder if I should remove the feeder all together and just put their feed out for them on a daily basis and if this will stop the loss of feathers/pecing problem. And of so how much food should I feed per chicken.

    Thanks for the input.
     
  2. snowflake

    snowflake Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,834
    55
    231
    Aug 21, 2009
    Belding Michigan
    what kind of feeder do you have? I would not mix the scratch with the feed. scratch should be a treat and can be thrown on the floor to entertain them. they scratch around on the floor, helps to break the boredom do they have grit and oyster shell? enough water? If you are getting 5 eggs from 6 hens this time of year you are doing well. Most people have a feeder available at all times and scratch one or two times a day as a treat, by mixing the 2 you are cutting down on the protein they get from the Layena.
     
  3. jimmyneutrontx

    jimmyneutrontx New Egg

    4
    0
    7
    Dec 23, 2010
    I have a hanging metal feeder, its about 6 inches off the ground. I'm not worried about egg production I'm worried about the loss of tail feathers and vent area from pecking. Since I'm new to chickens I'm trying to figure out of Purina Layena crumbles is all I need t feed them or is there something else I need to provide for them.
     
  4. snowflake

    snowflake Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,834
    55
    231
    Aug 21, 2009
    Belding Michigan
    try the injury sight you might get better feed back. your feeder is good but they could be going at each other out of boredom. It is very cold here in Mi. but if I don't leave the door open so they can go out once in awhile they start to peck at each other. You could get some 7's and try dusting them just in case it is mites? Usually if mine peck at each other due to pecking order it is in the head area. not really sure about the vent area except when I had roosters going at each other and the but was up and the head tucked in a corner. Hope some one with more experience responds.
     
  5. SSDR106

    SSDR106 New Egg

    4
    0
    6
    Aug 22, 2010
    R.I.
    We found out our chickens will not eat from the hanging feeder and will not eat the pellet food either unless my wife mix's it with water and it becomes like oatmeal, then they attack it! Besides the scratch we feed the chickens a couple pcs of bread (They Love it) a day. I have read that chickens can eat anything you eat except chocolate and avocado. So, try out some leftovers. We have only two birds and treat them mostly like pets. [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by