how much to feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by chasehope, Nov 27, 2013.

  1. chasehope

    chasehope Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is there a formula for how much to feed per chicken? I seem to be having a hard time figuring that out. Thanks!!!
     
  2. yyz0yyz0

    yyz0yyz0 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are too many variables to answer your question.

    Do you free range at all, do you feed treats. are you fermenting the feed, are you losing feed to rodents or waste?

    I have seen numbers between 1/4-1/3lb per bird per day. I have food available to the birds 24/7, but also give them some fermented feed daily and also give treats and let them out to free range.
     
  3. TOP KNOT

    TOP KNOT Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have free choice feeders in my run. I usually go through 40 lbs per week for 20 chickens. I do also give them alfalfa hay, pumpkins etc.
     
  4. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mine forage daily. I have feed available all the time in the coop. I keep it stocked. They eat what they need. Unlike humans, chickens won't overeat.

    Chris
     
  5. pdirt

    pdirt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, a lot of variables to consider. We have been going through about 40lbs every 3 weeks for 12 (was 13 :( ) birds. We supplement with kitchen scraps, free ranging and fermented feed. The feed has been left in their run to eat at their leisure.

    However, we're now transitioning them into 100% (or near it) fermented feed. I'm starting with 1/4c of fermented feed per bird (the FF is nearly double in volume to dry feed) and will gauge how they do with that and will increase slowly to 1/2c, or as seems fitting. For the transition we'll still have dry feed available, but not all the time. I block access to their dry feed until after I've fed them the FF in the morning, so they don't stuff themselves on the dry stuff before I get to them in the morning. In winter here I think it averages 15-25F but occasionally dips much colder than that. If this works like I think it will, we should save about 50% off our feed bill!
     
  6. chasehope

    chasehope Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thank you! Ours are unfortunately not allowed to free range anymore. We have 2 puppies who like to "play" with them so they are safer in their coop/run. They do get some alfalfa but other than that its just pelleted feed right now. We have 17 chickens, 4 guineas and 2 ducks. I was just curious as to how much they should be eating. We are feeding them 7 pounds of feed per day and they usually have a tiny bit left over at the end of the day. We don't seem to have rodent problems...
     
  7. Secretlyspotted

    Secretlyspotted Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am new to chickens and asked the same question. Someone responded that each hen should eat about 4oz of food per day. I don't know if that number helps you, but it did help me to estimate how much food to throw in the yard every day. We don't have feeders- I toss crumbles in a pie tin twice a day.
     
  8. pdirt

    pdirt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Possibly you can eventually train those puppies to "play" nice. When we introduced our 7 yo lab-mix to her first (and ours) chickens, she trembled with anticipation. I think she wanted to play with them too and if we hadn't trained her, we're not quite sure what she would have done left unattended. We certainly didn't trust her. Now we trust her completely and leave her unattended with them on a regular basis. If another dog visits and starts to chase the birds, our dog will start doing the same until we call her name and she stops immediately. Maybe you'll have some same luck?
     
  9. chasehope

    chasehope Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, we hope that will be the case. They are 7 and 13 month old corgis and so "herding" is so much fun, then they catch them and pull their feathers out. They are good when we are there, but can't be trusted alone, and unfortunately they have access to the yard through the doggy door. Hopefully when they are older the birds will get to free range again! We will try again in the summer.
     
  10. wolfglen

    wolfglen Out Of The Brooder

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    I've found a pretty good way to cut down on chicken feed expense.
    I started raising chickens when I worked for a fly tyer in upstate New York who raised some of the greatest quality blue dun chickens (Harry Darbee) .
    I now live in Florida.

    On my property are three ponds where I raise tilapia. Into those ponds, I've added water lettuce and hyacinths which is supposed to be a no no. However, they take up the nitrogen, phosphates, etc and create vegetable matter which as best I've been able to ascertain on line is about 8.5 percent protein.

    Each morning I rake a wheel barrow or two of plants from my pond and give the plants to my chickens before I give them their corn or scratch. They fill up on that first and supplement their diet. (There are also a lot of insects in with the plants). In this manner, a 50 lb bag of feed lasts three days for my 150 birds.
     

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