Dumb question about my chicks spilling their food...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by coocooforcocoapuffs, May 2, 2007.

  1. coocooforcocoapuffs

    coocooforcocoapuffs In the Brooder

    Apr 22, 2007
    My first chicks are about two weeks old, and I'm feeding them chick starter in one of those things with the plastic jar that drains into a round dealie with holes for their wee heads (am I making sense? lol). Well, in the last few days I keep coming home to most of the food all over the floor of their brooder. The feeder isn't tipped over or anything, but somehow they get all the food out and spread it about! How the heck are they doing that? It isn't like they can get in and scratch in it or something like that.

    Help! The waste is driving me bonkers.
  2. Pringle_Sussex

    Pringle_Sussex Songster

    Apr 19, 2007
    if i think its what it looks like... i reckon they are sticking their head in and draging it out... so like flicking out the feed.. my chooks do it when they're looking for certain grains in the mix i give them... thats all i can think of...
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    It's called billing out their feed and thats what chickies do. To reduce this or nearly eliminate it, raise the feeder or hang it up so that the upper lip of the feed dish is just above their back level so they have to stretch to eat out of it. It's too much work to scoop it all out for the most tasty bit then. Make sure the littlest one can still reach though.
  4. rotzilla

    rotzilla In the Brooder

    wow it took 2 weeks for them to do that mine were doing it on day 2 and i thought what a waste but just figured thats what they do......
  5. coocooforcocoapuffs

    coocooforcocoapuffs In the Brooder

    Apr 22, 2007
    Well, rotzilla, it would appear you have gifted chickies! [​IMG]

    Good advice, silkie - I will give that a try!
  6. Corey NC

    Corey NC Songster

    Mar 28, 2007
    North Carolina
    In this pic you can see what I did with my waterer because the kept getting there shavings all in it. I just took one of our kid bowls and turned it over and screwed the bottom part of the waterer to it, works great! For the food I usually just set it on a block of wood.

  7. Jay Bee

    Jay Bee In the Brooder

    Apr 22, 2007
    North Florida
    Hi all: I had the same problem, the Dutch chicks that I raise are very small and the the chick feed is granulated so I started grinding it in a electric coffee grinder. This has cut my waste down by about 80%. Hope this helps. JB
    Last edited: May 3, 2007
  8. coocooforcocoapuffs

    coocooforcocoapuffs In the Brooder

    Apr 22, 2007
    Awesome. I put the feeder and the waterer up on blocks and now I have very little spilled food and fewer shavings in the water (we have that problem, too, but I just thought it was inevitable). Wooot! [​IMG]
  9. keljonma

    keljonma Songster

    Feb 12, 2007
    8A East Texas
    Also, I've read that if you only fill the feeder part of the way, instead of near full, they have a harder time billing out feed and waste less that way.

    Good luck!

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