How much feed?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by pixiedouglas, Apr 11, 2011.

  1. pixiedouglas

    pixiedouglas Chillin' With My Peeps

    Currently I have 11 standard sized birds, only 4-5 weeks old at the moment. DH asked me to figure out how much feed is going to cost once they're grown. We may add 2-3 more easter egger chicks, also standard size, so possibly 14 birds total in the flock if we do that. They will get to free range part of the day on about a 1/4 acre I estimate? Our lot is 1/2 acre, so I figure discounting the house and front yard that's about what's left. We'll give them treats from the garden/table, whatever doesn't go in the compost. Our orchard is young, we planted 25 bareroot fruit trees this year, but I expect they should have a steady supply of bugs off the fruit trees someday. We're counting on them to do our pest control since we don't want to use any pesticides.

    So about how many lbs of feed will they go through in a month?

    Thanks!!!!
     
  2. hennyannie

    hennyannie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2011
    North Carolina
    I had a group of 14 that used about one bag a week. So that's about four a month. I feed mine free choice and kept the feeder full all the time, and they still only ate about one bag a week.
     
  3. LarryPQ

    LarryPQ Easter Hatch!!

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    Depending how much they waste, and how much the wild birds eat, you can count on ~2 50-pound bags of feed a month. Probably less, with all that free-ranging.
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    If your feed is like ours, it is going higher all the time. It is easy for a dozen full sized birds to eat a bag of feed every 20 days, especially in the winter. I fed out 13 production reds this winter, with point of lay in late January. They easily devoured a 50 #, $12 bag of feed every 24-25 days. They need it to keep themselves warm and they lay almost every day.

    Safe to say, confined birds, full sized, given feed costs, your husband should expect $25 a month. your mileage may vary.
     
  5. panner123

    panner123 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 15, 2007
    Garden Valley, ca
    A full grown layer will eat 1/3 pound of feed per day. Free range them and it will be a little less.
     
  6. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    "free ranging" on 1/4 of an acre simply will not provide much help. Marginal at best. Great entertainment and quality living for them, but it isn't going to greatly change the feed requirements.
     
  7. pixiedouglas

    pixiedouglas Chillin' With My Peeps

    As long as they eat the pests off the trees! [​IMG] That helps me thank you. I'm trying to calculate how much feed equals about how many eggs, rough estimate to see if I can supplement feed costs selling my excess eggs and just get a general idea for my budget how much I'll be spending a month on feed (not counting the rising prices!).

    My neighbor is on an acre and we can see and hear her chickens in her yard all day, do you suppose my flock will "talk" to hers? They make a pretty funny ruckus whenever someone lays an egg.
     
  8. pixiedouglas

    pixiedouglas Chillin' With My Peeps

    One more question for those of you who grow supplement to feed or entirely grow your own feed.

    What would you recommend someone to grow with limited space as a treat or supplement to layer feed? Hot summers, some days as high as 95-100. Cold winters, get some hard freezes in winter, but no snow. DH tells me we're in the "grey pine zone".
     
  9. LarryPQ

    LarryPQ Easter Hatch!!

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    ... I mooch grass clippings off my neighbors.

    I also feed them weeds, garden waste, and mulberry leaves.

    I will sometimes grow bread flats of radishes---if only because they have such a fast turnaround. Let one flat go to seed, and you have free radish seeds for life LOL!
     
  10. panner123

    panner123 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 15, 2007
    Garden Valley, ca
    If all your hens are laying, you should get one egg from each every 25 hours.
     

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