Time of Day to Feed


In the Brooder
10 Years
Sep 8, 2009
Chickens don't arrive until spring of 2010 so time to sort this and other details out.

Is it better to feed in the morning or in the evening?

We often leave for work by 5am when it is still dark and other times during the year we will be getting home when it is dark (having left in daylight).

I don't want to foul (sorry :) things up by changing their feed schedule. is it better to just give them a feeder in the coop and let them eat when they want?
I've 23 birds and two 7 lb hanging feeders-they get free access 24/7. Much easier and convenient this way-they're not like dogs; they don't gorge themselves to the point of illness. Good luck and happy researching!
I like to use a feeder, fill it in the morning and check it at bed time. same for water.

I wish I had knowen how to use the net befor I got birds the first time, would have save me a bunch.

way to play it smart
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We feed layer feed in the morning, scratch in the run, and make sure that we feed enough that some layer feed is left over after the frenzy.

They get garden scraps around lunch time, and let out to forage in the afternoon.

We re-fill the feeder with layer when we put them back in the run in the early evening.

All that works if someone's around during the day. (It's also what we do with laying hens ... are you getting layers, or meaties?)

If you can't be around during the day, or home for lunch, I'd suggest feeding in the morning and late afternoon, or just stocking the feeder so that it is always full. If you do the latter, though, you'll probably have more wasted feed, and attract more free-loading rodents and such.
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I feed ad libitum with feeder/waterer. Very easy that way too. Never any waste because they will eat what falls. I will occasionally give them a treat like oats if I call them, and they come running to me. I let my hens out of the run each day about 2 hours before dark. They put themselves back in, and I just lock the run door, and drop the pop door after they enter the coop to roost.. Easy is good.
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Planing on layers.

Will be installing an automatic method to open the door to the run after it has gotten light, and to close it again at night. (will post once I have bugs worked out)

Sounds like if I keep the feeder full and just let them have at it inside the coop that they will be happy, not certain about keeping feed in the run. Water I can keep in both the run and the coop. (BTW both coop and run will have dirt floors)
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