how often should they eat?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by crystal94040, Feb 27, 2008.

  1. crystal94040

    crystal94040 Songster

    Aug 15, 2007
    since our chickens were chicks we have always kept their feed bowl full.
    they are 6 months now and lately have been making a huge mess with it. We keep it in the hen house and now I'm wondering if it should be moved into the yard because in the hen house they waste SO much of it!.

    what does everyone else do?
  2. d.k

    d.k red-headed stepchild

    * I feed mine all she wants twice a day & scratch/treats outside at lunch. She eats less the a.m. she lays & makes it up @ dinner. Oh, and I remove the dish inbetween so she can't 'play' in it & doves don't get into her food.
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2008
  3. Matt A NC

    Matt A NC Crowing

    Feb 22, 2007
    Morganton, NC
    My feeders are in the lots and not in the houses. I am out at dawn to open the houses, so they have access to food and water as soon as they get up.

    After they are a couple months old I switch the hanging feeders or a feeder/pan that has something that keeps them from scratching the feed out. They can still make a mess if they decide to. In some cases I have a small pan/feeder set down inside a larger feeder to catch what is scratched out. At the end of the day I pour the excess back in my carry bucket to remix for the next day.

    2 hours before sun down I make a round and make sure all feeders have something in them for supper.

    Morganton, NC
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2008
  4. chickbea

    chickbea Songster

    Jan 18, 2007
    I have an old hen that flips and scratches out 99% of her food. Here's how I fixed her wagon: In winter I put in a cage hung feeder like for a bunny or guinea pig, and screwed it into the wall. I have the height exactly right so that she can get her beak in there to grab food, but she can't flip it out. In the outside pen I do the same thing but secure it to the wire.
  5. Royal Blue

    Royal Blue In the Brooder

    Feb 27, 2008
    Where my better half is
    My feeders are kept full of layer pellets 24/7. I give the girls scratch in the morning when they come outside and at evening when they come in for the night. I also use scratch as a training aid when I want them to come at my command. The girls do make a mess in the coop, but it is no wasted as it would be if it were outside on the ground getting wet and drawing rats. They only eat what they want anyway. The rest of the time my girls free range.
  6. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I also keep mine full 24/7, however, they are hung very high so they have to stretch to eat out of it. That way they can't bill and spill everything!
  7. Luke74

    Luke74 In the Brooder

    Jan 9, 2008
    Las Vegas
    Yep silkie's right you have to raise the feeder a bit, ideally the rim of the feeder to a level just above the height of their back. You can use hanging feeders that are suspended from the roof or if you already have a feeder mounting it to a cinder block would be about right for a standard. The cinder block also prevents the feeder from being tipped over and/or moved if you mount it that is. Good Luck!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: