How much should my 10 week old chickens be eating?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by candice_111, Sep 13, 2011.

  1. candice_111

    candice_111 New Egg

    Sep 13, 2011
    Hello- we're new to keeping chickens, so any help would be greatly appreciated!

    We recently bought 6 chickens at about 8-9 weeks old (2 Rhode Island Reds, 2 Exchequer Leghorns and 2 Light Sussex crosses), and all seem happy and healthy. We kept them in their coop with integral run for 3 days to help them get settled; since, they have been 'free-ranging' for about 3 days in a fenced off area. The whole time, they have had access to growers pellets, however, they do not seem to eating very much. Advice I have read suggests that they will eat about 130g of growers pellets each per day, but they are probably only eating around a quarter of this. They are scratching and searching for food all day, and seem very lively- should I be worried?

    We bought the growers pellets from the same place as the breeders we got the chickens from, so they are not a 'new' feed. We have tried to keep the hens in the coop and integral run for an hour in the mornings before letting them free-range, but they are not eating a lot of pellets before going out.

    Thankyou in advance for any advice!
  2. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2009
    the South
    They are getting plenty from the grass and bugs. Yes, they will eat less. Besides, I never met a chicken yet that really 'liked' pellitized feed. If you don't believe me then just introduce crumbles and watch the difference.
  3. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    My flock always eats alot less when they get to free range in the spring through fall. So that's a good thing, don't worry! [​IMG]
  4. florida lee

    florida lee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 6, 2011
    I feed crumbles and leave it down 24/7...they eat as much as they want. they do eat a lot, they have a large run to forage in also.
  5. candice_111

    candice_111 New Egg

    Sep 13, 2011
    Thankyou for your replies- it's reassuring that they are getting what they need from free-ranging. I read somewhere that you can use a liquidiser to turn their pellets into 'crumble' to encourage them to eat it- does anyone know if this helps?
  6. turbodog

    turbodog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2010
    Independence, La.
    When I was getting down to the last of the starter crumbles I started mixing in grower pellets into the feeder, they took to it with no problems. Seem to be eating just fine but I buy less feed now. Crumbles that they slash out of the feeder, just get ground into the sand and wasted, but they can see the pellets and tend to peck them up off the ground. So I really think it's just a matter of less waste rather than less eatin. They also eat less feed when they get to do a lot of ranging.

    So I don't think you have a problem. [​IMG]

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