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chickens appetite dury cold weather

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by samsr, Oct 14, 2012.

  1. samsr

    samsr Songster

    Jul 24, 2012
    Fountain, Colorado
    Lately my flock has nearly doubled their food intake. A five pound feeder tube (home made pipe feeder) lasted them 3 days. Normally this would last them 6 to 7 days. This change happened when the weather got cold. (below freezing) Is this normal? I wuld think so, because they need to generate more heat for their bodies and thus need more food. I am just trying to get some confirmation or some imput form people on the site.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2012

  2. flockoffour

    flockoffour Chirping

    Jun 28, 2012
    West Coast
    I would think so, because their food has a good amount of protein, and their bodies work harder to digest it, and that's what heats them up. Giving them some mealworms or warm oatmeal can also help in keeping them warm.
  3. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Crowing Premium Member

    They can no longer find nearly as much grass, nutritious bugs, worm, etc while they are wandering about. That's our experience here, as fall deepens and winter approaches. Additionally, yes, they'll need more calories to keep them warm during winter. Feed costs almost double from spring/summer.
  4. mickey328

    mickey328 Songster

    May 4, 2012
    Northern Colorado
    The shorter days and cooler temps trigger their bodies to use more energy for maintaining their bodies, so they'll increase their food intake and generally egg production will be lowered. You can supplement their food with various other things like cheese, yogurt, cooked beans and meat scraps (for protein) as well as greens like spinach, chard and kale...these will help maintain those lovely golden yolks. I notice that on days when we give them lots of "other stuff" they eat less of their feeds...often by about 25%.
  5. samsr

    samsr Songster

    Jul 24, 2012
    Fountain, Colorado
    Thanks for the confirmation. That is what I thought. Good thig feed was on sale at Big R this week end.

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