Mistakes You Might Be Making With Your Chickens

Keeping chickens, whether for eggs, meat or as pets is a fun and easy way to add a little happiness and sustenance to your life. There are some common mistakes you might be making, however.

We’ve all made mistakes. Just because we’re told that keeping chickens is relatively easy, doesn’t mean there aren’t things that can go wrong. Investing money into keeping chickens means we want them to be happy and healthy so that we get the return we hope for – whether it be eggs, meat, or both. There are plenty of mistakes you can make when raising hens that could lead to the loss of your flock, illness, and more.

Here are 8 common mistakes you may be making while raising chickens:

  1. Your coop is too small. Remember, chickens will reproduce and if you don/t have a large enough coop, they will get too packed and spread illness and start fights very easily.
  2. Not providing a dust bath. Your chickens need one to actually keep clean and get rid of mites and old feathers.
  3. You feed them too much or not enough. It takes a while to realize how much food your chickens need to remain healthy. It is possible to overfeed or underfeed your flock. Be sure to start off with a moderate amount and adjust from there. Use a Grandpa Feeder if you can, and never put too much food out for the flock if you’re going on holiday.
  4. You use too much or not enough heat.  Depending on your breed of chicken, they may fair better in warmer or colder climates – or both. Find out from an expert how much heat you may need to provide to your chickens during colder weather. And, when the days are especially hot, find a way to cool the coop through airflow, etc.

  5. Not handling your chicks enough. If you want your older chickens to come to you without biting or aggression, it’s important to cuddle and handle them quite a bit as chicks.
  6. Keeping too many roosters. You only really need one for every ten hens. More than that and fights can spread as well as, well, more mating than your hens actually want.
  7. Too many drafts in the winter. It’s important to keep the hens’ roost and nesting areas away from doors and drafts (like windows). They want to be snug and warm while resting and drafts can actually prevent eggs from being produced.
  8. Keeping your chickens cooped up inside. They need fresh air like the rest of us. Let them get some exercise outside if they want it. Yes, even in the winter. 

If you’ve noticed yourself making these mistakes, don’t feel bad. Keeping chickens has a learning curve. To learn more about proper chicken feeder techniques, reach out to our team today or take a look at our blog.

24 Comments

  1. Christopher Ingram on November 16, 2021 at 7:46 pm

    Hi Chris Ingram here I have just discovered a fault with your grandpas feeders there is corrosion attacking the gal side wall of the feed holding area as this has only had top grade feeding pellets this should have all been tested I have photos to prove this what can be done to stop this regards Chris
    Ps for some reason people who sell chicken eqt do not seam to respond very well so can you please respond to this before i put it on Facebook etc

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 7:54 pm

      Hi Christopher, Apologies for the late response. Would you please provide photos? Please send to [email protected]

  2. Deirdre Barrett-lennard on November 16, 2021 at 7:56 pm

    Thanks for the info.
    I LOVE my grandpa’s feeder.
    Was given a younger chook who is still being pecked into line by her older sisters.
    Rosie did not need much training to catch onto idea of feeder.

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:16 pm

      Thanks Deirdre. Really appreciate your comments and support.

  3. Christopher Ingram on November 16, 2021 at 7:59 pm

    will ring mark in nz got his number tks chris

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:15 pm

      Thanks Christopher.

  4. Mike Warlick on November 17, 2021 at 4:20 am

    Good read. I love my Grandpa Feeder. Really need to buy another one for another pen of chickens I have. Good info here. Keep the informative emails coming.

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:15 pm

      Fantastic. You’re welcome Mike. Thanks so much for the feedback and for your support. We look forward to supply you with that new feeder.

  5. Jeanette Sams on November 17, 2021 at 5:20 am

    Thank you for posting such good things for a reminder on how to care for chickens! I made a new chicken condominium that goes between the henhouse and the outdoors and they seem to really love it! Again thank you for reminding us how to care for our chickens

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:13 pm

      Great idea Jeanette. Thanks for your feedback. Much appreciated.

  6. Allen Cox on November 17, 2021 at 5:26 am

    Thanks for the information ,I learned aa couple of things That i can improve on.

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:12 pm

      Pleased to hear it. Thanks Allen.

  7. Ruth on November 17, 2021 at 5:45 am

    If the food is in the Grandpa’s Feeder, WHY can I not fill it up if I’m going on Holiday?

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:10 pm

      Hi Ruth. You need to know how much your chickens usually eat each day and work out much will be needed while you’re away. If you calculate they’ll eat say 10lb while you’re away then don’t put 20lb or 30lb in the feeder.

  8. VICTORIA J JUHL on November 17, 2021 at 6:04 am

    We are in our second week of training our girls to use your feeder. I have noticed the chicken feeding from the side and not stepping on platform may get her head chopped if another steps off platform. Could this happen?

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:04 pm

      Hi Victoria. Thanks for your inquiry. No, we have never heard of that happening.

  9. VICTORIA J JUHL on November 17, 2021 at 6:07 am

    Not sure what that means: comment waiting moderation ???

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:06 pm

      Hi Victoria. That was just an automated response to your original question letting you know we were yet to reply. I have just replied to your inquiry.

  10. DIANE FOWLIE on November 17, 2021 at 8:53 am

    My 2 batams are really frightened of next level on feeder won’t go near it what shall I do

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:02 pm

      Hi Diane. You mean level two training level? It’s important to persevere and remain patient. Ensure the feeder is the only supply of feed for your chickens as well. Please see this video for some ideas: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-pEmFx6W1Q

  11. Denise Freiberger on November 17, 2021 at 4:36 pm

    #3 paragraph above says, “And never put too much food out for the flock if you are going on holiday”. What does that mean? A grandpa large feeder can hold 40lbs. Why wouldn’t you want that to be full?

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 6:00 pm

      Hi Denise. It’s important to ensure your chickens can feed only from the feeder if you’re going away. In other words, don’t leave a lot of food out for them away from the feeder. Hopefully this helps. With the feeder don’t fill it if it’s not needed. For instance, if you calculate you need 10lb of feed while you’re away don’t put 20lb or 30lb in the feeder.

  12. Denise Roberts on November 22, 2021 at 10:52 am

    Looking for help to find your blog.
    Help on how much to feed our 6 laying hens.

    • Richard B on November 22, 2021 at 8:03 pm

      Hi Denise. It may require some experimentation. Try a modest amount of feed initially. See how long it lasts. The standard feeder you have is ideal for you. It can feed six chickens for up to 10 days if you don’t want to be filling your feeder too often.

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