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Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by riley, Dec 6, 2008.
I am getting chickens in the spring and I wondering what feed laying hens and how much they eat
Feed depends on the age of your chickens and what the intended purpose of the bird is. If they are laying you will want to feed 16% layer. If they haven't started laying or you are raising them for meat then you would want to feed a 20% grower.
Riley, their maintenance feed requirements also depends on the breed. A Leghorn-type hen eats abut 1/4 pound of feed each day, 85 to 95 pounds in a year. A heavier breed hen will eat 1/3 pound daily, or thereabouts.
Here's some info from the University of Missouri Extension on what the chicks will eat as they grow.
Hope it helps .
i just got chickens, 2 naked neck hens and 1 rooster (not sure of his type) a farmer down the road gave them to us, he raises all his chickens for eggs. My hens haven't started to lay yet, he said they were close (not sure how old that would make them). He gave us some feed too, it's all in french...i think it's some barley of some kind and then he gave us some pellets. But I'm not sure how much I should feed them. I am feeding them in the morning in the coop and put about 2 handfulls of each in their pan. Not sure if that's enough or too much, since they won't even leave the coop (another post regarding that problem), wondering if i'm overfeeding and so why would they leave.
If you free range the birds, the amount of feed they eat is significantly lower as they will always choose what's around them over the feed in the late spring to early fall.
For what it is worth: I fill up a 7# feeder and sit it in the coop. I top it off daily. This way my birds always have feed available to them. I do the same thing with water. I fill a 5 gal waterer and refill it with fresh water daily. I've kept layers for more than 30 years this way.