What should I feed my chickens? And how should I water them?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Rravenrose, Oct 18, 2019.

  1. Rravenrose

    Rravenrose Chirping

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    I just recently got two chickens and though I have some experience with chickens in the past I have no idea what I should feed them or if there's a special way I should give them water. Some chickens kinda just wandered into my yard and I've looked for their owners but nobody has claimed them. It's about to be winter and I don't want them to starve so I figured I would take them in. The trouble is I don't really know much about how to take care of them. Could someone give me some pointers?

    Edit: also I only have two chickens one is a dark Brahma and the other is a mixed breed
     

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    Last edited: Oct 18, 2019
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  2. FortCluck

    FortCluck Crowing

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    Feed them chicken feed, it has all the nutritional stuff that a chicken needs to be able to live. You can find chicken feed at stores like southern States, tractor supply, and even Walmart. You can look online and order then pick up in the store, that's what I do.

    There are waterers for chickens at the same stores I mentioned above as well. I own ducks and chickens, so I use 5 gallon buckets filled up with water and I refill them twice a day.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2019
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  3. Rravenrose

    Rravenrose Chirping

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    Thank you, I did add a picture to my post since I figured it might help people with helping me, I'll have to look into chicken feed and waterers.
     
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  4. FortCluck

    FortCluck Crowing

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    I'm sorry I didn't even notice a picture, I think I might need coffee :gig
     
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  5. PirateGirl

    PirateGirl Chicken Lover, Duck Therapist

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    Check out the Learning Center here:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/category/learning-center.11/

    There is lots of great information to help get you started.
    Chickens don't need anything fancy. A rubber bowl, or a dog bowl (the kind that can't easily be tipped) is big enough to provide water for 2 chickens for a day. Just refill or top off with fresh water daily.
    I would visit your local feed store and see what they have available. Most will carry at least one brand of chicken feed and this will have everything in it they need. Just give them as much as they want to/can eat in a day. They typically won't overeat. Then you can check out the chicken treat chart here:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/ar...—the-best-treats-for-backyard-chickens.47738/

    and see a list of things that are safe (and not safe) to give them from your own kitchen.
     
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  6. ValerieJ

    ValerieJ Crossing the Road

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    If you have cold winters where water can freeze, get a heated water dish for them. Otherwise you'll spend all your time changing out frozen water. I would get Flock Raiser or All Flock Feed, chicken grit and oyster shell. My chickens have access to this 24/7.

    Do you have a coop yet? Will you be building a coop or buying one? Most prefabs aren't worth the money and will deteriorate in a couple years. However, I have bought one in a pinch to accommodate the need to isolate an injured hen. As predicted, it lasted about 2 years, but took care of my immediate need. If a prefab coop says it's big enough for 4-6 chickens, it will probably accommodate 2 chickens. Think 4 SF per chicken for the coop size. Don't think for a minute you will stick with 2 chickens. I'd be pretty surprised if that happened. So, make your coop much bigger than you think you need. Same thing with the run, where you need at least 10 SF per chicken.

    Good luck. Happy you decided to take then in.
     
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  7. FortCluck

    FortCluck Crowing

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    I know not all Walmart's carry chicken feed, but mine does I think it's because a lot of people own chickens in my area. They have the best price in my area too for feed, it's by Manna Pro.

    Tractor supply has tons of options for chicken feed, when I buy feed from them I buy the all flock raiser because it is suitable for all ages of chickens and roosters/hens.

    You can also give them scraps on the side with their feed, but make sure only 10% of their daily intake is scraps. They like lettuce, fruits, vegetables, meat, and mostly everything.

    Here's a list of 100 things they can eat (on the side with chicken feed) chicken feed should always be #1 so they get all the nutrients that they need...

    https://backyardchickenproject.com/what-can-you-feed-chickens-100-things-on-our-list/
     
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  8. Rravenrose

    Rravenrose Chirping

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    Thank you for all the help! We're going to move soon so I'm trying to find a way to make them a nonpermanent chicken coop so that they won't freeze during the winter and will have a place to get out of the elements. I'll also think about the run, I don't have much extra money right now but I think I'll have enough to keep them comfortable until we move.

    My local Walmart sells a 40lb bag of chicken feed for like ten dollars and I don't know if it's the best but I'll probably end up getting that if it's not sold out. I'll have to find a heated waterer cause our water does have a tendency to freeze out here in the winter.

    Hopefully I'll get more chickens in the future but for now I think my family is fine with the two.
     
  9. FortCluck

    FortCluck Crowing

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    That's the chicken feed I get. I pay $10.88 for it and it's 40 lbs called egg maker... It's made by Manna pro. I don't get the crumbles, I get the pellets because the crumbles tend to be really powdery and it's a waste to me.

    I also buy soldierworms at Walmart, I add 2 bags to each 40 lb bag. I have a big food bin that I put it all in and mix it. I also add black oil sunflower seeds, you can also find those at Walmart.
     
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  10. Rravenrose

    Rravenrose Chirping

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    Thank you! I'll look into all this when I go to the store later. I really want to do my best to keep them comfortable and happy.
     
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