Sustainable Living Center Oregon
Rodents often appear in the fall, when their external food sources are depleted by harvest. They emerge from the fields, where they live in burrows, to forage and feed around buildings. In contrast, mice will establish colonies within buildings and might never venture outside.
Rodents are responsible for more than a quarter of all farm fires of unknown origin, but the main risk from infestations is feed contamination and disease exposure to both you and your flock. A rodents can produce more than 40 droppings per day and a gallon or more of urine per year. A variety of human and livestock diseases are spread through contact with rodent excrement, which include cryptosporidiosis, toxoplasmosis, leptospirosis, brucellosis and salmonellosis.
What is needed is a chicken feeder that has no mess, doesn’t spill out over the ground, and doesn’t clog up when the feed gets moist or wet! In fact, a feeder can be specifically used for wet feeds for chickens such as fermented feed and does not attract RODENTS!!!
Feed Store Feeders cost a little more than our No Waste Feeders. They are made of PVC, metal or plastic. When hung at chicken head level, the chickens can waste a fair bit of food by flinging it out of the feeder with their beaks onto the ground, where it may not get eaten. When it rains, the feed could get wet. You’ll need a funnel or cover on the top if you want to keep birds from perching on top and pooping in the food.
Rodents are the big problem with a store bought feeders because if there is chicken feed on the ground, you will have a rodents problem soon or later..
This Basic Bucket Feeder completely eliminates feed mess and waste and also keeps food dry in the rain. A 4-gallon model, (with with a lid or without a lid) takes up as much space as a large chicken so it might not be appropriate for small coops. As noted previously the basic feeder only has one feeding position so this model might not be good for a big flock .
You see the chicken’s head, inside is an 90 degree elbow bending downward, like an L that tipped forward. It is up off the bottom and the food runs around this and it keeps the food back from the hole. The chicken then sticks it’s head in to reach to the back and get the food.
This is same feeding design as the Basic Bucket Feeder, but done with either a 15-gal, 30-gal or 55-gal barrel. A larger barrel means that you can put enough feed for your flock for a longer period without refilling your feeder. The 15-gal model will hold 100 lbs of Chicken Feed. This make the job of feeding the chickens so much easier and it water and rain proof.