question regarding feeding chickens to avoid mice

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Scotty from BI, Apr 26, 2019.

  1. Scotty from BI

    Scotty from BI Songster

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    I would like to withhold food from the flock for up to about three hours in the morning.

    Let me explain. until recently, I have been waking up every morning when the chickens wake at the crack of dawn and putting food in their closed run. I put the food away at night to keep rats and mice away. But it is getting harder and harder to wake up every morning as I age and days get longer. So I began leaving the feeder available over night to give them access in the morning. Now for the first time I am seeing mice. I have killed about one a day with traps (Put out 10 baited traps) but that is not really a solution since they reproduce quickly and will soon learn to avoid the traps.

    Would it cause any harm to have the chickens wait for me to wake up before their first feeding, possibly up to 3 or more hours after they wake. They do have access to water and can get into the run. Once I put the food down it will be available all day until they go to sleep.

    I am not a fan of the treadle feeders since seeing mice get into the cracks spaces of these feeders. Mice seem to be able to get into anything.

    Appreciate your comments.
     
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  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

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    It will not hurt your birds to wait a bit for their breakfast.
     
  3. Texas Kiki

    Texas Kiki Egg Pusher

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    The chickens won't mide the wait one bit.

    Go back to picking up the food at night asap.
     
  4. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Crowing

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    The chickens will be fine. Mine don't get fed until 8, 9 AM. Do make sure they have access to water though.
     
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  5. Scotty from BI

    Scotty from BI Songster

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    Thanks guys, I guess my concern was that they might start to become more aggressive toward one another with no food when they emerge from the coop
     
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  6. Texas Kiki

    Texas Kiki Egg Pusher

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    Are they already picking on each other? If so this might make it worse.
     
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  7. Scotty from BI

    Scotty from BI Songster

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    No they are not picking on each other, I don't want it to start
     
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  8. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Crowing

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    If you want to try easing them into it, you can try putting out the food a little later each day (maybe 15 min each day?) until you reach your ideal wake up time. That should make it easier for them to adjust.
     
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  9. Gray Farms

    Gray Farms Conserve Heritage Breed Livestock

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    It doesn't matter when you feed them. I feed mine after work 5-6 pm.
     
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  10. Scotty from BI

    Scotty from BI Songster

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    Even though they are confined to a closed run and coop?
     
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