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Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by djennings, Jul 1, 2011.
How much food do you feed 12 chickens?
I'm pretty sure most of the members here give unlimited access to feed when the chickens are in the run or free ranging. Feed in the coop is a preference.
If you want to use the portion feeding system, it will take some trial and error. Depending on the breed.
Start by feeding a healthy portion, 2 quarts of feed in the early morning. Watch to see how long they take to finish it. If they gobble it down in 20 minutes, you'll need to feed 2.5 quarts the next morning. The goal is provide slightly "more than enough" for the morning feeding.
Once you've established what they need/want in the morning, look and see how long it takes them to finish picking the trough clean. Noon? 2 pm? That would be my goal. You know you've fed them enough for more than half the day.
Then, feed a smaller portion around 5-6 pm. This portion needs to be smaller and needs to be cleaned up completely within the hour. The goal here is not to have any feed remaining through the night, which tends to encourage visitors of the rodent variety. This puts them to bed with a full crop.
Try the system. See if you like it. See if your hens like it.
What we have been doing is about 6:30 am, we feed them 8 cups. They will eat what they want and leave the rest for later. I always make sure I stay in there for awhile to make sure my little girl silkie gets to eat. I have 10 RIR's, so they pick on her at feeding time. I also throw 3 or more tomatoes in there for them also. They love them. Then when we get home we throw them some chopped corn to scratch around and eat. Does that sound like enough?
I have a flock of LF, and I have noticed that even when the feed bin is full of pellets they have room for BOSS, whole oats and shell corn! If they are asking for more and I think they need more pellets(calcium source), I throw handfuls out into the straw like its the BOSS and they suddenly love the pellets.
How much birds eat varies; you will get to know your flock when you follow Fred's Hens suggestions and then adjust accordingly. GL
Just keep the feeder filled when needed. There is really no weighing of food or micro-measuring of amounts needed unless you are doing laboratory research.
Lots of people on this forum tend to over-analyze. Chickens will eat almost anything and eat until they are full. Thats about it.
Quote:There ya go. Keep feed in the feeder and let em choose for themselves.