How much feed a day?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by animalpro24, Feb 28, 2012.

  1. animalpro24

    animalpro24 Chillin' With My Peeps

    928
    5
    121
    May 13, 2011
    Oregon
    I have 5 RIR chickens and 7 ducks of various breeds. The ducks and chickens are separate so they each have their own feeder. Currently they have food 24/7 except for the ducks, they don't get food or water at night. It's getting expensive to feed 12 birds all day, so how many cups a day should they both get? They can't get much bugs or anything from foraging cause they yards are bare. Would it be fine if the chickens don't get food and water at night too?
    And what feed do you think is good for laying and is pretty cheap?
    ~Thanks!
     
  2. CluckyJay

    CluckyJay Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,596
    11
    163
    Feb 23, 2011
    Crossville, Tennessee
    I do not free-feed mine anymore. They freerange though. I give them a few handfulls of oats (I free-range so they get their own extra food) once a day, and whatever scraps they fight the cats for. I have over twenty chickens/roosters and that is all the help they get from me. If they start costing a lot more than buying organic eggs/meat at the store, then I would probably get rid of most of them.

    Five chickens shouldn't cost a lot to keep, even if you're buying their feed. I would give them 1/4 to a cup a day, each, and then see how they are doing with that. They do not have to be fat to be healthy.

    If they look good, are not bony/emaciated, and they're laying well, you're probably fine.

    I also leave them access to all the oystershell they want. At times they nibble the goat minerals.

    I don't know about ducks.

    Chickens do not have to have access to food 24/7. Keep their water in there at all times though. I have found chickens will pretty much eat all day and waste their food if you leave it out all the time.

    If you're not free-ranging on good land you'll want something better than plain oats.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2012
  3. CluckyJay

    CluckyJay Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,596
    11
    163
    Feb 23, 2011
    Crossville, Tennessee
    They also get fish though. I forgot to add that. Hubby fishes and they usually get quite a bit of raw fish.
     
  4. vickifiveoh

    vickifiveoh Chillin' With My Peeps

    277
    1
    101
    Aug 24, 2011
    Burnsville, NC
    Thanks for your info on about how much to feed. That helped me a lot.
     
  5. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

    6,034
    837
    336
    Oct 16, 2010
    NEK, VT
    Our 6 chickens go through 5-7 pounds of feed a week depending how much they can forage themselves free ranging or out of our compost. I found that pellets are the way to go as there is far less waste. Crumbles end up all over the ground. We provide feed all day in run, no feed in coop.
     
  6. nanncee

    nanncee Out Of The Brooder

    16
    0
    22
    Oct 18, 2011
    Northern wasatch front
    I currently have 11 layers, 8- 4 to 12 week chicks, and 10 - week old chicks. I am going through probably 5-7 lbs of food a week(dry whole wheat, ground wheat, oats, flax, sunflower, pumpkin) and any table scraps that would normally go in a compost pile. Given it is currently still winter and there is 4 inches of snow on the ground, so this will go down as the weather gets better. From our 11 layers we get 6-9 eggs a day. The older layers do have free access to a lot of land, free ranging makes the world of difference. Have you considered trying a paddock method to introduce better free range while using the same amount of land?
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2012

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by