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free feeding

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by ben is a terror, Mar 13, 2013.

  1. ben is a terror

    ben is a terror Songster

    Apr 9, 2011
    Do you leave food out all the time or do you have a feeding schedule? Which is better?

  2. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Songster

    Dec 15, 2011
    SE Pa.
    I have a feed trough in the coop that has feed all the time. The feeder outside, in the morning I only put enough for the day. I think it depends on your situation as to which is better.
  3. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Crowing

    Assuming we're talking laying hens, yes I leave them with a full feeder all the time. It's natural for birds to eat a little here and there all day long and slowly fill their crops rather then trying to consume one or two big meals a day in a short amount of time.
  4. Mtn Laurel

    Mtn Laurel Songster

    May 18, 2012
    Northern Virginia
    My Coop
    I have a feeder inside the coop that is available 24/7. They will snag a few pellets from it first thing in the morning - or on torrential downpour or snowy days when they don't want to go out - but usually don't touch it for the most part as they'd rather eat from foraging. I also give them kitchen scraps.

    I don't keep any excess food outside the coop for fear of attracting pests and predators.
  5. smedly9921

    smedly9921 In the Brooder

    Apr 20, 2012
    North East Ohio
    Mine always have plenty of layer feed and i also leave them grit and oyster shell. I find it helps reduce the pecking of the lower chickens because they don't have to fight over food all the time. Plus i get big healthy eggs and lots of them. Also my chickens get plenty of excercise. I think you will find in the summer when they can forage around you wont use much food.
  6. cinch920

    cinch920 Chirping

    Mar 4, 2013
    Central Nebraska
    I have a hanging feeder in my coop that I always keep full with layer feed. I keep oyster shell outside along with tossing some scratch out for them. I like to have feed and water available 24/7 for them.

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