Sunday, August 10, 2008

New Chicken Feeder

Just for size comparisons, this is a picture (originally posted on June 28, 2008) of a Maran on my hand.
And this is a picture of the Princess Chicken taken yesterday evening. I know in the blog they look similar in size, but note that the hand that is holding the chicken is the same hand - and that hand hasn't changed sizes in decades, now!
The new feeder came on Saturday (actually, it got here earlier, but I was on business travel, so it hung out at the post office for a while). The chickens really like it a lot - no more banging their heads against the divider in the baby chicky feeder. A little more than half the flock can eat at one time, and since the food is out for them all day long, it isn't a problem. About half head straight for food when I let them out in the morning and about half go running around like, er, chickens, just enjoying the freedom to run and flap about. Around the time they are done running around, the first set of chickens have filled their collective tummies (crops) and are ready for a stroll, and the others get to eat. Working out well, but I can see a second feeder in the future.
Of course, there are benefits for the head hen (me!), too - this feeder holds about 20 lbs of food - close to half a bag. That's about 3 days worth. Where as the baby feeder (that once held a full day's ration for them) only now holds a half a meal for them. By the time they have transitioned off of baby chicky food in the next month or so, I'm sure I will be needing another grown up feeder.
Other advantages of this feeder is that it is up on 4" x 4" blocks of wood so they can't scratch out food and waste it, and it has little dividers which are pretty effective at preventing the pullets from swishing their beaks from side to side and flinging food about. Given a choice, the chickies will fling food everywhere every time.

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