Food in Coop or Run?


In the Brooder
6 Years
Apr 23, 2013
As a new chick owner (4 babies) I am doing all kinds of research ... and among my questions is:

Should feeder & waterer be in the coop or the run? Why??


7 Years
Mar 28, 2012
My feeder and waterer are in the chicken coop because I think they should have access to their food at all times (I lock up the coop at night so they aren't allowed into the run) and also, if I sleep in late they will already have food and water with them so no need to worry. The only reason why I would consider not keeping the food and water in the coop is that sometimes it can be a little messy.


In the Brooder
6 Years
Apr 16, 2013
Hi there, We've kept our oldest hens food & water inside their coop, but now that we've had them a year I'm beginning to see how little they actually use them in there. Whenever I put any water or food in their run or around our yard they are all over it, so I'm considering moving them out of the coop. But our hens mostly free range during the day anyway, and don't seem to go back to their coop other than to lay eggs.


In the Brooder
6 Years
Feb 25, 2013
Atlanta Metro
I moved my chicks to their coop about 2 weeks ago. I put a watering bucket with nipples in the coop, and had their food in an old dog dish moving it in and out at night / morning. I will be making another bucket for the outside so they have water anytime - day or night. I'm thinking of making a food dispenser for the run, and only move it in if there is an extended rain since the run doesn't have a roof / cover. It gets too messy inside the coop otherwise.

They don't need access to their food 24/7. My father-in-law's dad raised chickens for a living back in the 40's - 70's (and his family before him - they sold off the business after he passed away). My father-in-law was telling me they only fed them twice a day: morning and evening; and they did just fine. Good luck with whatever you choose!
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Michael Apple

11 Years
Mar 6, 2008
Northern California
As a new chick owner (4 babies) I am doing all kinds of research ... and among my questions is:

Should feeder & waterer be in the coop or the run? Why??

It depends on your coop and run situation I think. Redsoxs point was sensible as that is what I do with my adult birds. Everyone has their own methods for chicks. At around 4 weeks, I set my chicks up in their grow-off pen. I have a coop attached to a secure, fenced run outside. I prefer rearing chicks in the months of March, April, or May. It may still be too cold in March or April, so I'll hang a brooder lamp in the coop until they chicks are fully feathered. Since the red lamp is on at night for warmth, I make sure the growing chicks have a hanging feeder and access to water. When I open the coop in the morning. I hang feeders and place waterers outside the coop in the run. Before I lock them in the coop for the evening, I place the waterer and feeder back in the coop. This begins training them to go in and out when I want them to, instead of fumbling around to get them in and out of the coop.

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