Feeding/Watering in the Hen House

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by CorporateGranola, Sep 8, 2010.

  1. CorporateGranola

    CorporateGranola Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We just transitioned our 5+ week old flock from the brooder to the outside coop. Because they are still very young, DW and I were very concerned they'd need food & water overnight. We lock them in the hen house ~7-8pm and let them out by 7AM. My question is this: should we continue feeding/watering inside the hen house, or just let them eat/drink once they wake up in the morning?
     
  2. sharol

    sharol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Admire, KS
    My feeder is actually in the coop to discourage mice/rats at night when they aren't in the run to defend it. I have been putting their old chick waterer in there at night, too. It has been sweltering hot until this week, and I didn't want anyone to dehydrate. I also put in one of my little solar lights from the fence at night. OK, so they are spoiled rotten. (mine are 8 weeks old)

    Quote:
     
  3. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    At about 6 weeks is when I transitioned mine to just food and water during the day. And I DO get out there at daybreak to let them out, fill the feeders and waterers, and stir up the shavings in the coops. I don't rush them at night, letting them fill up on food and water and put themselves to bed. Then I come out to lock them up.

    It works well for me, since I was noticing mold growing under the waterers, food was being kicked everywhere, and the food wasn't being eaten much at night.

    I remove all food at the end of the day to prevent rodents from eating it. This is what the songbirds do!!! No water/food in their nest!
     
  4. CorporateGranola

    CorporateGranola Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I still keep their red heat lamp on them at night, but they have plenty of room in the hen-house to get away if they are too warm. That said, they seem to prefer the comfort of the heat lamp. It hasn't gotten below 70 degrees at night, so I know they can tolerate the temps, but it's kind of like a security blanket.
     
  5. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Forest Grove, OR
    I have the larger feeder and waterer in the run. I have a small feeder in the coop (the coop - which is just barely large enough for four birds). I was keeping their chick waterer in the coop as well until a few days ago. Since they began laying they all go up there and pace around and kept knocking the thing over. Now they just have to wait until morning for water. But, really, I had no problem at all keeping a waterer in the coop until that point.
     
  6. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    If you have a heat lamp on them, you may want to at least keep water in there for them for now. They might get thirsty under the lamp.
     
  7. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Yay Chicks! :

    I have the larger feeder and waterer in the run. I have a small feeder in the coop (the coop - which is just barely large enough for four birds). I was keeping their chick waterer in the coop as well until a few days ago. Since they began laying they all go up there and pace around and kept knocking the thing over. Now they just have to wait until morning for water. But, really, I had no problem at all keeping a waterer in the coop until that point.

    If it were me, I would worry about them choking on the food without water to wash it down. I'd take the food out, too.​
     
  8. CorporateGranola

    CorporateGranola Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I agree. I'd prefer to either leave both, or take both out. The heat lamp really covers less than 20% of the floor in the hen house, but I hadn't considered it might be causing them to get thirsty. That alone would be enough of a factor for me to leave their food/water inside until I stop using the heat lamp at night. [Week 6-7 probably, just to be safe]
     
  9. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

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    My food and water is inside the coop, and they have access to it 24/7. In the summer, when it's really super hot, I put an extra plastic wash tub with water out in the run, but I always keep the food inside. That way, you don't have to worry about it getting wet or exposed to the elements.

    Chickens don't eat after dark. (At least mine don't.)

    Hope this helps!

    Sharon
     
  10. snowflake

    snowflake Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 21, 2009
    Belding Michigan
    [​IMG] I agree they don't eat after dark, go up on the roost and stay. I always have food and water it my coop so little ones can eat with out harassment from the older ones, I also put my out side feeder in the coop at night to keep mice, coons and other critters from getting into it.
     

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