Feeding chickens

We know many of you are keen on gardening, so here's your latest plot: dug over, weed free and ready to sow the seeds of new ideas...

 
 
 

Page :  1
avatar
Sue G

Feeding chickens

A few weeks ago we got 4 chicks, they are about 4 months old.

I got the book about keeping chickens etc and have looked on the netfor advice.

A french neigbour told me i should keep their feed dish full all the time. As well as having chicken food they have potato peelings diced and boil with veg, they pick out the potato and leave the veg, soak bread, pasta rice . (not all on the same day)
Each time i try to feed them veg they refuse, (cooked or raw.)

My question is, Do they eat just for the sake of eating???? I'm not sure if i am over feeding them. Yesterday i put there food out first thing in the morning and by lunch time both plates were empty. I didn't refill their food for a few hours and the way they ate anyone would think i never fed them.

Thanks for any advice

avatar
Welshcookie

Feeding chickens

Yes, they need feed to appetite, they are growing. They need protein to grow heathily. It's in the commercial feed.

Go easy on the carbs or you will get fat chickens. When they reach adult size they will slow down.

They should relish greens as they get older.They love picking over a pile of weeds, cabbage stalks and outer leaves, etc.

Remember to clear away all uneaten feed at roosting time, or you will encourage rats.

avatar
Sue G

Feeding chickens

Thanks Welshcookie,

They only get pasta & rice if i over cook for the kids and i then take a few spoons out for them.


We made a big pen and a house for them in the garden and in the night time they move into the garage as it is so cold until they get a bit older.

I didn't think they would be so funny. When it rains they stand side by side in the door way of their house & watch the rain. They refuse to stand on wet grass, so they make a mad dash and sit on the stone step next to their gate when it stops.
Kids are going to take them for a walk around the garden later, i don't want to leave them out in the big garden yet as we live right on a forest, not only do we have foxes (not that we have seen any,) but mad french farmers shotting anything that moves.

Thanks for the advice

avatar
Darkginger

Feeding chickens

Chickens are great entertainment. I know you said you boil your potato peelings - that's important, because spuds have a toxin under the skin (worse when they go green). Part of the nightshade family, they are (channeling Yoda again there!). My chickens were particularly fond of rice (in addition to their layers pellets). We fed ours (getting more later in the year when the dogs are older and better trained) twice a day, usually - but they free ranged everywhere on our half acre (and beyond) and ate all sorts of bugs and stuff too. Can't wait to get more - we get eggs from a friend who keeps hens, but I miss eating ones that are so fresh, they're still warm :)

avatar
Susan11

feeding chickens

Not only warm eggs but with yolks that are slightly orange from all of the good free range things that my chickens eat!

avatar
Sue G

Feeding chickens

Wish we had a spell check on the ste, i should have said "shooting".


Thanks for the advice about the potato peelings, they do like something warm to eat first thing, while it is cold & frosty.


Kids let them out in the big garden yesterday, while they walked them around i popped two eggs from the kitchen into their house and tried to trick my 7 yrd, that they had layed them.

Told him to put some fresh straw in their house, after a few minutes he comes back into the kitchen and told me " we have very smart hens, as they already know their numbers and how to write the date"

avatar
SonyaK

Feeding chickens

Sounds like you've got a very smart 7 year old there, SueG!!

And I did like the idea of "mad french farmers shotting anything that moves."!!

avatar
Linzechris

Chickens

I love my hens they are so entertaining and they each have their own personality.
They do eat alot.
Mine free range in the garden which is just about half an acre or more and I have a feeder which I put feeders pellets in and twice a day I give them left overs (cooked veg and pasta or rice)if I have them, and I also give them corn or barley scattered on the floor(only a handful).
For a real treat they get sunflower seed hearts and their absolute favourite is dried mealworms.
If you want to train them they will do anything for a mealworm!
One word of warning is that a friend of mine gave her chickens lettuce every day as they loved it but it eventually killed them. Apparently it contains traces of scyanide. It is not enough to kill humans but hens can't get rid of it and it builds up in their body. A small amount on the odd occasion is ok but she gave hers some every day.x
P.S. My husband says I treat my Chickens better than him!

avatar
Becky

Chickens

Oh Sue - lucky you.
They are so entertaining to watch I agree.

Whilst out girls all go into the house in the evening because of Mr. Fox our beautiful cockerel absolutely refuses and roosts up in the apple tree.
No going in with those silly girls for him...!!

Enjoy those chickens...

avatar
Wendy

Chickens

I live in the country and we have just bought our third lot of chickens, four of them. The first lot were taken by a fox the second by a ferret! So to all of you who have hens make sure there are no holes that ferrets can squeeze through. The mess it/they made trying to get the hens through the gap (about 1.5") was horrible. The hens' heads had been separated from their bodies & their wings were lying around. We know it wasn't a fox as the first lot were taken 'cleanly' no mess just a few feathers. The dogs proved absolutely useless on both occasions, never hearing a thing. I would like this lot of hens to have an armed guard and give them some guns!!

Wendy :)

avatar
Linzechris

Feeding chickens

I know what you mean Wendy it is horrible but nature I suppose. My chickens are pets really and I cried when the fox got mine.
We've now but an electric wire running top and bottom of the fence.Fingers crossed it works. It has worked for about 10 months now but I still worry that the fox will get in.x

 
Page :  1

Return to Homepage
Visit the Delia Online Cookery School with Waitrose
Click here to go to Waitrose.com

 

 




NetObserver
CMS solutions by REDtechnology.com