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PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 2:26 pm 
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Showy Hen
Showy Hen

Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2017 8:36 am
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Location: Brisbane
Can I re train my chickens. I've set up some bad habits for my girls. Over summer I started putting water with pellets, I was worried about dehydration. I was warned that I'm " mothering" them. They now expect this wet pellet mash. I also would offer to much household scraps, they started refusing to eat enough mash, I believe they are holding out for the kitchen scraps. I was wondering can they be re trained? I've purchased Jenco 18% fine layer mash to encourage feeding themselves again, not the human adding water. I will also only offer kitchen scraps as treat at end of the day. How long should I expect them to be stubborn and not eat properly, before they give in and realise routine has been changed a bit. They do seem to enjoy this new food mix, luckily.
Thanks everyone

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 3:39 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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It’s definitely much easier to provide a dry feed that lasts, rather than a wet feed.

Your chooks’ expectations will change as they learn they’re not going to get the wet pellets anymore. I’d cut out all scraps for at least a couple of weeks, or until they are reliably eating the new food. Offer only the new dry mash. They won’t let themselves starve.

Out of interest, have you changed the container that the food is being offered in? Sometimes that can put birds off a bit initially.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 3:44 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Location: Brisbane
70%cocoa wrote:
It’s definitely much easier to provide a dry feed that lasts, rather than a wet feed.

Your chooks’ expectations will change as they learn they’re not going to get the wet pellets anymore. I’d cut out all scraps for at least a couple of weeks, or until they are reliably eating the new food. Offer only the new dry mash. They won’t let themselves starve.

Out of interest, have you changed the container that the food is being offered in? Sometimes that can put birds off a bit initially.

Hi Rach,

I am using the same container, my thinking was keep something the same for them. They recognise the colour and know food is coming. Good tip about cutting out the household scraps. I know I only have myself to blame for mothering them. Lesson learnt.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 5:13 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Well, we all do it. I do, anyhow! :) Nothing wrong with treats in moderation.

I always give any treats in their pen which helps to train them to go inside on cue (which means giving up on foraging in the yard, something they’d do 24/7 if allowed!). Using treats strategically means you get some behaviour benefits out of it too.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 8:26 pm 
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Newbie
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Our girls have their favourite things that they hold out for, but it only takes a day or two of withholding for them to eat other things.
They have pellets in the run all the time, and get a mix of rice, macaroni, pearl barley, split peas and lentils boiled soft, and the diced frozen veg on alternate days in the morning, and scraps, wheat and greens through the day. They get scraps from us, as well as two sets of neighbours.
I've read on here and elsewhere that if given too many scraps they won't eat their pellets, but I've found they still eat a lot of the pellets each day.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 11, 2018 3:42 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Location: Brisbane
I purchased some parrot seed mix. I've sprinkled them in the garden to grow as forage for the chickens.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:20 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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I’m sure they will enjoy that :)

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