My chickens are not foraging, should I hold off on feeding them?

Mosherd1

In the Brooder
7 Years
Jul 4, 2012
39
0
32
East Windsor, CT
I brought home my chickens a few days ago. They come out of the coop but they have spent 95% of each day underneath some bush's that I have. They do not seem to wander out from under there to do their "chicken thing." I am not sure if I should not feed them until late afternoon or if they are just nervous while they get used to the new surroundings. Any thoughts? Thanks,
-Dave
 

ocap

Crowing
7 Years
Jan 1, 2013
4,796
1,231
341
Smithville, Missouri
I brought home my chickens a few days ago. They come out of the coop but they have spent 95% of each day underneath some bush's that I have. They do not seem to wander out from under there to do their "chicken thing." I am not sure if I should not feed them until late afternoon or if they are just nervous while they get used to the new surroundings. Any thoughts? Thanks,
-Dave

I use a little cracked corn in the morning to encourage the wandering about and the older birds go farther so give them some time in their new surroundings.
John
 

Eggcessive

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Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
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southern Ohio
I would say that they maybe aren't used to foraging. Most chickens are nosey and inquisitive about their surrounding, but those chickens may have not been out much, or didn't have good things to forage. I would think they are also in shock over the move, and may have been penned up in the days before you got them. I probably would check them for mites and lice, worm with Valbazen or Safe Gard Liquid Goat Wormer, and even a 1/2 cocci treatment with Corid.
 

Eggcessive

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Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
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southern Ohio
Also this is the time for most chickens over a year old to start there first big molt, so they may be feeling a bit weak. When moving from one yard to another they may be exposed to a new strain of coccidiosis they are not already immune to, and I would watch out for diarrhea or any blood streaks in the stools. That is why I recommended the Corid treatment. Full strength dosage is 2 tsp liquid (or 1 tsp powder) to 1 gallon of water for 5-7 days. You could treat them full strength or give a 1/2 strength preventative dose. After that a week or two of vitamins and either probiotics or plain yogurt would help.
 

Mosherd1

In the Brooder
7 Years
Jul 4, 2012
39
0
32
East Windsor, CT
Thanks for the replies. They are about 9 months old according to the guy I bought them from. He had chickens running all around the yard so I was under the impression that they were used to free ranging. I did purchase some scratch grains this morning at your suggestion, I will report back if things do not change. I am hoping it is just the stress of moving to a new area. They have about a quarter acre to explore and would hate to see them never use any more than a 2X10 section of bushes! Thanks,
-Dave
 

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