How to keep chickens entertained in a run....

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by fasschicks, Oct 16, 2013.

  1. fasschicks

    fasschicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 10, 2013
    South Central Wisconsin
    Does anyone have any ideas on how to keep hens entertained while being in a run (mine is all sand - 15x7 for 6 birds)? I am afraid with having them in a sand run all day/every day they will get bored and not do a lot of pecking/digging (or at least not find anything to eat besides their feed). They will be pretty much confined to their coop (6x7) and sand run (7x15). On the weekends, I will try to get them to range in a movable penned area, but during the week (especially winter), they will be in the coop/run most of the week.

    Would love to hear all of your ideas - even if they are quirky. I would love to make their life as enjoyable/entertaining as I can.

  2. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2010
    Forest Grove, OR
    Here's a few ideas:

    Put veggie scraps in a suet cage and hang it.

    Hang a whole cabbage (like a tether ball).

    Get a seed block.

    This is a great time for pumpkins. Cut one in half and they will clean it out, gooey stuff, seeds and all.
  3. jimmywalt

    jimmywalt Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 24, 2013
    Mine are cooped just like yours............

    I throw in grass clippings (they eat and pick through a lot of it), large amounts of leaves (to pick through), vegetables (corn on the cobb), breads/buns to pick at and eat, straw to fluff up, kick around, and eat the seeds that are within it.
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Toss scratch or regular feed in the run. They'll spend lots of time scratching through the sand for the feed.

    I don't think it will work with your sand, but in my run I keep pieces of plywood laying on the ground. Every so often I flip them over and let the flock enjoy the buggy goodness that's developed underneath.

    folks here have also drilled small holes in 2 liter bottles and filled with feed or scratch, let the birds chase the bottle around and eat the feed that comes out.

    Large veggies they have to peck at a lot are also good--cabbage is a classic. Winter squash, melons, pumpkins, things like that. Even apples. don't chop any of these up, the idea is to let them peck at them.

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