Valley Permaculture Alliance

So we were being inundated by sparrows and mice that were eating the chicken food and thought a Treadle Feeder would help limit the food to the chickens.  Well, we went out an bought one.  In the last 5 days of trying it, we discovered our chickens are scared of it.  When we tried to just hold out, they protested with loud squawks.  Any suggestions out there on how to convince them to use it?   

Tags: chickens, feeder

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Are you propping it open? 

Can you put something irresistible in and around it to make it worth the "risk"? ;-)

I recently bought one too, but I haven't tried mine yet.

Yes, propped open and sparrows are having a feast. Other than scrath, what is irresistible.

It's different for each flock.  Mine love tomatoes, yogurt, sardines, etc...

Hi Mark,

 

Did you purchase one of ours at the Western Ranchman?  If so please give me a call at 480.406.0898.  I can walk you through the different steps of how to work this out.  Some birds are different and take a bit more encouragement.  When you have a moment please take a look at this video hopefully it will give you some hope :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BCiU8FUWR-Q

 

Vanessa

The best way to train your chickens to use the feeder is to hold back their morning feeding and let your poultry acquire an appetite, keep food from them for a whole day if that is what it takes. Wait until they are walking the fence looking for you and their feed and it is obvious they are hungry. Place your feeder in an area that is out of the weather and on a FLAT SURFACE. The flat surface is imperative for your feeder to work. Ideally a flat board or flat level pavers that provide a flat level area 20 inches square. Home Depot/Lowes sells a red concrete paver that is 20 inches square and is around 5 bucks.  Introduce your chickens to the feeder and fill the entire feeder with feed then cover the feeder. Sprinkle some of your feed on the platform and open and close the feeder a few times so your chickens are familiar with the action of the door. It will not take long for your poultry to figure it out.  This feeder is not recommended for chickens that are younger than 10 weeks.

Yes, we bought it at Western Ranchman. I spent an hour today showing them how it works and baiting them with pellets, scratch and tomatoes. Maybe they will catch on... try again tomorrow. I actually installed self gluing felt pads and a weight below the step to make it easier to open and to prevent the snapping noise when it was shutting.
Mission accomplished and thanks Vanessa. I pulled their food and kept them in th coop from Fri night to Sunday at noon. I moved the treadle feeder in the coop today and with minutes they were opening it. Even the skidish RIR used it.

Thanks for the post Mark.  It really is the way to go if you are going to have chickens.  The feeder saved my poultry habit for sure as I was going nuts seeing all that food go to waste.

 

Please if anyone has any questions whatsoever about your new feeder don't hesitate to call me.  Western Ranchman and San Tan Feed have sold an average of 6 feeders a week since we put them out there the end of August.  No one has returned their feeders and although a few have had a couple of hiccups getting their birds to use it eventually everyone has gotten through it and their birds love it.  I can be reached at 480.334.5607 and my email is vanessa@haulnassproductions.com

 

Directions for use:

Congratulations on your purchase of the Automatic Chicken Feeder.  You will find that this purchase will make your coop cleaner and your feeding practices more productive leading to healthier birds. 

The best way to train your chickens to use the feeder is to hold back their morning and afternoon feeding and let your poultry acquire an appetite.  For Poultry that are allowed freedom on your property or yard you may need to hold back their grain feed for longer.  Wait until they are walking the fence looking for you and their feed and it is obvious they are hungry.  Sprinkle feed on the platform so your chickens will accidentally trigger the treadle do not open it for them.  Place your feeder in an area that is out of the weather and on a FLAT SURFACE.  The flat surface is imperative for your feeder to work.  Ideally a flat board or flat level pavers that provide a flat level area 20 inches square. 

Introduce your chickens to the feeder and fill the entire feeder with feed then cover the feeder.  Sprinkle feed on the platform so your chickens will accidentally trigger the treadle.  You can open put your foot on the platform so they will be familiar and not surprised by the opening and shutting.  If you want the cover to come down at a slower rate simply tighten the bolts.  It will not take long for your poultry to figure it out. 

This feeder is not recommended for chickens that are younger than 10 weeks.

If you have any questions feel free to contact the manufacturer at Vanessa@haulnassproductions.com

Thank you for your purchase and say good bye to all of those free loading wild birds and pest!

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