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How much do your chickens eat?
are mine hens or pigs?


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#1 BetteBoop

Posted 10 February 2013 - 03:05 PM

Hi chicken folk,

I have 2 isa brown hens that are 6-7 months old. They lay daily. Their eggs are very large and often double yolked.

Usually they free range around the yard. Today I kept them locked up to see what they eat.

I gave them 4 pieces of bread, a bowl of fruit/vege scraps and filled up their laying mash dispenser (holds about 4 cups).

They've eaten everything in the coop and are squarking for more (or to be let out).

Is this a normal amount of food for 2 hens to eat? And this is pretty much the type of food they eat every day. Is there something I need to add to their diet?


#2 EuphoricDysphoria

Posted 10 February 2013 - 03:53 PM

My three get whatever scraps from the day before for breakfast as well as layer pellets ad lib and a couple of handfuls of mixed grain. They also have free range of the backyard. I get three 58 gr eggs a day.

Chooks are gluttons given the chance lol

Edited by Beautiful Warlock, 10 February 2013 - 03:54 PM.


#3 BetteBoop

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:00 PM

Do you limit their access to grain?

It's costing me a fortune.

#4 Romeo Void

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:04 PM

Are other birds getting away with the grain?

#5 BetteBoop

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:08 PM

They get a mix of 3 types of food: laying pellets, organic coarse grains and commercial mash.

I don't add anything else to this mix but it seems to have everything, ie pieces of whole corn and seeds.

#6 harryhoo

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:11 PM

Our Isa Browns had unlimited access to pellets as well as any kitchen scraps each plus the odd scratch mix thrown in to their house. I was told that they won't eat more than they need and we only had to top up their grain once a week or so.

#7 BetteBoop

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:16 PM

Once a week? I'm filling mine up daily.

It definitely sounds like mine are at least part hog.

#8 Meagan

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:17 PM

I have 4 barter browns & I buy 40kg every school holidays as my parents live in the country so feed is cheaper than in the city.  I get a scratch mix that has grains, cracked corn and a variety of seeds.  They also get all the vegi & cereal scraps.  They have a large fenced area which I keep them closed in for long periods, they also do get the run of the grass in the rest of the yard at least once a week.

If you don't have one, I recommend a grandpa feeder.  I got a cheap one from Ebay - $70 compared to $240.  It keeps the local bird population from eating the seed.  The chooks learn quickly to use it & our feed usage dropped dramatically.  It paid for itself in saved seed in about 4 months.

#9 BetteBoop

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:22 PM

Their food is kept hanging inside the coop in a poultry feeder. I don't think wild birds are eating it during the day. At night, the coop is rat proof once the door is shut.

I think the food I give them is being eaten only by them.

#10 ambwrose

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:34 PM

I have 3 hens and a rooster, they have free range of the back yard all day, and I lock them up at night.  I give them the days scrap everyday and only add grain if the scrap bucket looks empty.  They seem to be getting heaps and lay everyday style_emoticons/default/original.gif .  Chooks will just keep eating if there is food there.

Edited by ambwrose, 03 September 2013 - 06:46 AM.


#11 Frazzled Cat

Posted 10 February 2013 - 04:51 PM

Chooks will eat their own eggs and the corpses of their pen-mates given the chance.

Having witnesses both in my first job, I now don't trust chickens at ALL.  Maybe try restricting their grain, if you think they're getting enough other food.




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