Feeding at night?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by cookinmom, Apr 2, 2007.

  1. cookinmom

    cookinmom Songster

    Mar 14, 2007
    Saint George GA
    I want to get a hanging feeder to put out in my chickens' run, hanging from the "ceiling", but I'm wondering, how early is too young to not have them eating through the night? (Did that make sense?)

    If their food is outside, and they are inside, obviously they won't be eating. Chicks with their mom don't eat all night, I assume. Once it is warm in the night, probably a couple more weeks, I will leave their chicken door open at night so they can come out and eat as soon as they're ready in the morning. Their house is in a pretty secure run, so I'm hoping this will be ok.

    The motivating factor in this is that, for the last few days, in the morning, they have emptied their chick feeders and knocked them over.

    Any suggestions?
  2. wynedot55

    wynedot55 Songster

    Mar 28, 2007
    at 6 or 8 wks you dont have to keep feed in front of them 24/7.depending on where your feeder is they wont have feed in front of them 24/7.youll most likely fill their feeder morning an evening.
  3. keljonma

    keljonma Songster

    Feb 12, 2007
    8A East Texas
    Our flock is 10 months old and we always leave feed, water, grit and oyster shell available to them 24/7 free-choice. The feed is in hanging feeders, the waters are on stands, and the grit and oyster shell in separate small tubs.

    We don't have a fenced run and we don't keep any feed outside of the barn/hen house. This prevents wild birds from eating the feed. Our birds forage our 2 acres and come back to the barn to get feed, oyster shell or grit.

    If you don't provide feed 24/7, how do you know all your birds are getting enough to eat? I know our flock eats in shifts, the ones lower in the pecking order eat after the others have gone to roost or preen.
  4. ElioraImmanuel

    ElioraImmanuel Songster

    Jan 8, 2010
    So, do your chicks have light 24/7? They can't eat in the dark, right?
  5. Mandalina

    Mandalina Songster

    Apr 1, 2009
    As long as it is dark they wont eat.You will also notice that even if you leave their door open at night they will not come out of the coop to feed or drink, they cant see well enough and even if it is secure they still have the instinct to stay up high and away from predetors that can get them during the night. Our chickens feed is in the coop as well as their water so that way when they get up in the am before I go open their door they have food and water, sometimes with the kids I cant get out there until 10am.
  6. boogiedog

    boogiedog Songster

    Apr 19, 2010
    Oakland hills, CA
    I keep feed and water in both the coop and run 24/7. I find that sometimes some of the birds choose to go back into the coop and pick around. Also, if I can't get my lazy rearend down there at 6am to open up, they can start on breakfast.
  7. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Songster

    Dec 28, 2009
    Chickens aren't goldfish, they will not eat continiously if they are not hungry. I have 71 chickens and I have hanging feeders in all the hen houses and fill them on an avg. about once a week....the water gets filled each day. they only eat when they want to. At night they will not leave the roost to eat, and the babies in the brooder with a light on them 24/7 still only eat when they want to..I can go in at any time and they will be asleep or eating or just walking around...in other words they are fine give them the food.
  8. SouthernChick

    SouthernChick Chirping

    Nov 12, 2009
    I keep feed inside the coop 24/7. They eat when they are hungry but not at night.
  9. k7ailaan

    k7ailaan Chirping

    May 25, 2010
  10. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Chicks with their mom don't eat all night, I assume.

    Exactly. Eating at night is not a requirement.

    The motivating factor in this is that, for the last few days, in the morning, they have emptied their chick feeders and knocked them over.

    Any suggestions?

    They are probably knocking it over which empties it instead of emptying it then knocking it over. Change feeder types or secure the feeder so they cannot knock it over. I don't know what type of feeder you are using. If it is one of those red ice cube tray type feeders, try wiring it to a board or a brick. For the quart jar type waterers, I've been know to make a loop of heavy wire that sort of hinges against the wall. You raise the wire up to fill it and then snuggle the wire around the waterer to keep them from knocking it over. And I have made a loop of heavy wire that sort of clamps around the plastic quart jar and hung that from the top. Neither of these keeps the waterer level but it does keep them from knocking it over. If it is another type feeder, you might describe it and maybe someone can offer suggestions on how to secure it.

    Good luck!

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