When you imagine feeding your chooks, you believe it to be a fun and straightforward exercise. You know what they like to eat and get it. But what happens when your chicken feeder dupes you? The task that you supposed to be enjoyable turns into a whirl of a messy affair all of a sudden. That means you must be particular about the choice you pick. On the market, you get different types of chicken feeders. Some tend to be excellent quality, some bomb on the expectations, and others just don’t give you the right return.
How do you make sure you save only the best deal for you? Well, while you search for this product, choose on a system that prevents food wastage and, eventually, leads to lesser or no disruption by birds, insects, and rodents. For an experience, you can check the collection of Dine a Chook Chicken Feeders. Anyway, before jumping the gun, let’s just find out what you can do to make your selection accurate and satisfying.
Tips for buying a chicken feeder
If you compare the retail and commercial poultry equipment market, you will notice that the latter is at least ten years ahead of the former. The local feed stores generally offered you metal devices. But commercial poultry segment did away with metal feeders a long time back. They opted for plastics to avoid the issues of rusting, chemical reaction, and contamination. The retail stores did buck up but took the time to modify their poultry supplies.
So, today, if you look around, you will realize that plastics are the new standards in these devices regardless of the retail and commercial industries. However, the reasons behind such adoption could be different. For instance, professional farmers preferred plastic and stainless steel for their non-porous properties that prevent bacterial and viral attacks. They don’t let them develop. Then, the galvanized sheet metal couldn’t withstand the new-age disinfectants and succumbed to corrosion. But plastic devices emerged as a cost-effective choice in terms of durability, longevity, and rust- and acid-resistance.
From this, it is easy to understand why even retailers opted for a plastic body. They find it cheaper to ship also. The plastic feeders are lightweight compared to sheet steel devices. Hence, they don’t have to spend so much money on transportation. Plus, margins are higher. And as these don’t cost much, customers also buy it freely.
Nevertheless, you have to be conscious of the quality of the material used in the device, even if it is plastic. Many retailers use low quality plastic, which lacks durability. So, when you buy it from an online store or somewhere else, make sure to read product details to learn about the type of plastic used in the equipment. If it’s UV Commercial Quality ASA Plastic, you can trust the product.
Types of chicken feeders
As already mentioned once, options are not an issue. But finding the one that meets all your needs can be challenging. To avoid all the problems, you have to make specific considerations first. For instance, you have to know the size of your flock so that you can select the right size of the feeder. Usually, hens eat half-cup food daily. Then, you also have to realize why you want to purchase this unit, for example, to reduce your refilling efforts, or to stop vermin from attacking the feed, etc.
Besides, you have to consider installation and functionality from the angle of your hens and yourself too. Ultimately, you will have to train your hens on how to use it. Otherwise, even an expensive model can fail to live up to your expectations.
Once you get all these points right, focus on automatic feeding systems. Treadle, hanging, pipe style feeders are some of the most common and popular options. However, of them, tube feeders are found to be even better. There are various reasons for it. People choose pipe style chicken feeders for:
- Ease of installation: These models can get quickly fixed. You can use the mounting kit to place your feeder onto timber, wire mesh, and so on.
- Safety of the feed: These feeders come with unique designs that allow them to keep feed dry even during heavy rainfall. Since the feed remains dry, you don’t have to bother about changing it. Then, their shapes don’t allow anything else to enter them other than the chicken’s head. So, the risk of soiling is almost zero. The food remains clean and hygienic.
- Wastage prevention: Since it supplies a fixed amount of the feed, the problem of spillage on the ground gets eliminated to a great extent. And since there is no scattering, other unwanted visitors will also not have the motivation to enter your territory and wreak havoc.
- Rodent safe: Related to the point discussed above, the unique paddle system in the tube chicken feeders doesn’t let chickens throw grains and corns onto the floor, which attract rats. So, due to this, you get rid of the rodents.
Number of chicken feeders
Another critical criterion is storage capacity. As per rough estimation, six hens would consume about ¼ lb of feed a day, which means you will need 1½lb everyday. So, buy a feeder that can store that amount. Also, avoid using a too large-size feeder because it will be challenging to manage, particularly when you would want to clean it.
So, these are some fundamental things that you can keep in mind to have a successful experience with a chicken feeder for your chooks. Just make sure whatever device you choose is reliable and consistent. Hens can initially take time to acclimatize to an automatic feeding system. But allow them some time so that they become comfortable with it. When they feed on a feeder in the first few months, you may have to keep a watch on them so that there is no problem. Also, buy it from a trusted place only. It is essential for quality assurance and pleasant customer experience.