Feeding my hens

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by revmarcie, Dec 7, 2016.

  1. revmarcie

    revmarcie Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 12, 2016
    I have a sparrow problem. my girls free range during the day but their coop is open with feeding buckets and water all day. I have a small doorway for my girls to enter and exit. so do the sparrows no matter what I try I cannot keep them out. I am now keeping the girls locked in the coop and closed run for 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the afternoon when I give them open bowls of feed too. They are feather pickers since we got them and I cannot break the habit (tried every thing there too). When one tucks her head into one of the 3 feed buckets somebody else takes advantage and bites her butt and tail feathers. They all look like they have bee attacked by weed walkers on the tail ends. We got them last Oct at between 9 to 11 weeks old with already established picking habits. Anyway question is, will my 2 hour am and pm bowl feeding schedule be enough. tHey still have the buckets available all day but I don't really know if anybody tigers a chance to use them,
     
  2. revmarcie

    revmarcie Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 12, 2016
    Sorry about the crazy typing. I'm using a tablet and stylis and I'm no good at this.
     
  3. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    For the feather picking, have you tried switching to a higher protein feed? Plenty of people here only feed twice a day.
     
  4. revmarcie

    revmarcie Out Of The Brooder

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    Yep, tried the high protein food fix, aprons/saddles, pinless peepers... they got around all of that and still pulled feathers, and the high protein didn't help either. I'm stuck with some wild "women" chickens who love pulling each other's feathers. They really look awful and I have to keep a close eye that they don't take it too far to bleeding. Thanks for the input on the feeding schedule though --- I'm really trying to cut down on those wild sparrows -- it can't be good for my girls to be exposed to them.
     
  5. revmarcie

    revmarcie Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 12, 2016
    Yep, tried the high protein food fix, aprons/saddles, pinless peepers... they got around all of that and still pulled feathers, and the high protein didn't help either. I'm stuck with some wild "women" chickens who love pulling each other's feathers. They really look awful and I have to keep a close eye that they don't take it too far to bleeding. Thanks for the input on the feeding schedule though --- I'm really trying to cut down on those wild sparrows -- it can't be good for my girls to be exposed to them.
     
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    How big is your coop? How many birds? How much roost space?
     
  7. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    What about spreading their feed out in the coop bedding so they have to work for it? (use a pellet) Or switch to fermented feed, give them a Multi-flock 20%, and then give them 10 - 20% of their daily feed in a scratch tossed on the floor.
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2016
  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    It can take a couple months for a high protein feed to start working, if the picking is deficiency related.
     
  9. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    First off try a flap on the Pop door....One the Hens can easily open themselves...Like a cat door flap........

    Anyways.....

    About your pecking issue........Nutritional issue comes to mind.......I


    What feed are they eating?.....I take it they are not laying yet?


    Cheers!
     
  10. revmarcie

    revmarcie Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm sorry, I goofed about their age -- we got them last October. They're wonderful Rhode Island Red brown egg layers. They have a lot of lovely space in their coop and in their enclosed run and as I said they are out most of the day free ranging. We have them now on 16% protein and I also add scrambled eggs to their diet for extra protein. I tried a door flap and they freaked out and wouldn't go in (or out) of the enclosed run. I truly am frustrated about the sparrow issue and the feather issue. I am grateful over the confirmation that they are able to get enough to eat though from the other posts. (Still laughing over my crazy spelling while trying to use my stylis and tablet (tiger and weed walkers) lol. Thanks for your input, it is appreciated.
     

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