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Author Topic: Keeping feed dry?  (Read 4564 times)

HesterF

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Kent
  • HesterF
Keeping feed dry?
« on: February 06, 2014, 10:59:07 pm »
Mud, mud and more mud. So how do you keep your poultry food dry? For the chickens I have galvanised feeders with the overhung top & the pellets in those are still getting wet (which then blocks up the whole thing). I've also got some bowls under little field shelters and the rain is blowing sideways enough that that's getting wet too. For the ducks and geese, I've tried leaving the bowls inside their houses but they never go back inside during the day and haven't realised that's where their food is. I'm ending up pouring gallons of brown mix away - a delightful blend of soggy pellets, rain and mud. I've tried just feeding them less so they eat it quicker but I think they're ending up ravenous. The only food that can cope is the mixed grain - fine in water and the ducks and geese like dabbling for it. But not exactly balanced day in, day out.

What's the answer?
Voss Electric Fence

hughesy

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Anglesey
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2014, 09:09:42 am »
Our chicken feeders are hanging inside the coops. This also stops wild birds helping themselves. We don't feed the ducks and geese except for corn in the evening so no pellets to get wet.

Dan

  • The Accidental Smallholder
  • Administrator
  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Carnoustie, Angus
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Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2014, 09:13:04 am »
Treadle feeders. They aren't cheap, but they mean you're never throwing food away and you have to refill them less often. Only takes a few days to train the hens.

Some options:

http://www.tasshop.co.uk/?searchStr=treadle
http://grandpasfeeders.co.uk/
http://shop.accidentalsmallholder.net/goto/wells_poultry/152/20kg-treadle-poultry-feeder/

HTH,

Dan

NicandChic

  • Joined Oct 2013
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2014, 09:18:49 am »
Our ducks are fed inside, I cut a 4 pint plastic milk bottle in half and used a plastic pull tie to attach it to an old gate propped up in their barn (one for layers pellets/ barley another for treats)

If your shutting them in at night (with food) I'm sure they would soon learn where to go!

Clansman

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Ayrshire
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2014, 09:28:44 am »
I feed inside the coop for chickens, ducks and turkeys

lord flynn

  • Joined Mar 2012
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2014, 11:38:20 am »
I use a pheasant feeder. if you get horizontal rain you have to keep the spring clear but it works better than any other feeder I've used-although haven't used a treadle.

twizzel

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2014, 12:01:08 am »
Mine still are scattered around the pen in the drier parts on the floor. There are quite a few so feeding from 1 or 2 troughs would cause trouble and really poaches the area, this way everyone gets to feed at the same time and I can scatter each day where it's dry-er. There's less wastage too as most is gone within an hour. They get some corn scattered around later in the day too in the same way.

Mammyshaz

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Durham
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2014, 12:20:56 am »
We built a porch to the outside coop and the food goes under there. We use a feeder with a rain lid as well. A friend has recently given us some old wooden slat bath mats which have proven good to stand the feeders on and helps to stop mud splashing in.
Our other run is half covered with corrugated opaque plastic so the feeder is fine undercover.

The rest of the runs are so bad with mud that I feel like a neglecting mother. We have put down wood chips which are disappearing quickly. And a neighbour getting a lleylandii chopped down has left it for us so all the leafy branches are being chopped and layered into the runs bit by bit.

This wet weather just seems endless. Would rather have frost and snow to give some relief to the mud bog .

ScribbleUk

  • Joined Sep 2012
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2014, 08:39:49 am »
We use a down pipe with a cap on the top and a u bend at the bottom to feed from.  It is attached to the outside of the coop which happens to be raised off the ground so the feeding hole is sheltered from the rain.  This setup has greatly reduced wastage due to scratching food out onto the ground and because of the slippery sides of the pipe it is very hard for vermin to climb up and pinch any.  Holds about 7 kgs of food.

Backinwellies

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Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2014, 08:41:26 am »

This wet weather just seems endless. Would rather have frost and snow to give some relief to the mud bog .

be careful what you wish for  ..... if you check back I  stated on here how dry in was in Wales the day before the rain started!!

 :sunshine:  :sunshine:  :sunshine:
Linda

Don't wrestle with pigs, they will love it and you will just get all muddy.

Let go of who you are and become who you are meant to be.

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chrismahon

  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2014, 11:47:23 am »
Our feeders are under shelters. We have treadle feeders but I don't expect the chickens to use them in the rain and if they did the feed would get wet, so they remain in the boxes. We bought them to solve the problem of rats in the daytime. It can rain all day here so shelters are really the only option. They are about 4 square metres with an apex roof covered in reinforced plastic. Some are black and some clear and they choose which one according to the conditions -clear on a dark rainy day and black when the sun is too strong. There are hooks underneath which we hang the feeders on overnight.

Mammyshaz

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Durham
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2014, 02:18:36 pm »

be careful what you wish for  ..... if you check back I  stated on here how dry in was in Wales the day before the rain started!!

 :sunshine:  :sunshine:  :sunshine:

Oh, yeeees, I remember who started this curse now  :-J   :roflanim:  :roflanim:

HesterF

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Kent
  • HesterF
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2014, 10:33:15 pm »
Chris, any chance you could post some photos of your shelters? I'm reluctant to go down the treadle feeder route because they are really expensive and I chop and change combinations of pens so sometimes the various birds are mixed in together, sometimes not and all would require different settings on the treadles (e.g. geese would have to have them adapted, ducks and chickens are different weights). My dad made the field shelters we've got but they're wood covered so I don't think they'll last too well (despite the painting and preservation) and they're quite heavy despite not being as big as you describe (hence rain blowing under them).

Daisys Mum

  • Joined May 2009
  • Scottish Borders
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2014, 07:38:00 am »
We have made shelters which are just a sheet of corrugated tin nailed onto 4 posts and about 2 feet high.
Although they may not look very nice they work well.
Anne

chrismahon

  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Keeping feed dry?
« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2014, 07:50:28 am »
Hi HesterF. Our shelters are quite light but low, so you can reach underneath but they don't blow over. They are a two person lift though because of the size. Never had one move yet in 4 years and if necessary you could hang weight from the top spar where the feeders hang. They pack flat, like everything I build, because of frequent transportation and they are very simple to make with little material wastage from standard lengths. I'll get some photos and post. I also have sketch dimensioned plans so that I can build more exactly the same or repair them if necessary. I think they look nice enough, but you wouldn't put one in your front garden.

 

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