The goal behind choosing the correct feeder is to find one that adequately feeds and nourishes your flock so they can healthily develop and live long fruitful lives. While getting your birds the right amount of feed doesn’t seem too difficult, there are certain designs that you can purchase depending on your farm and flock that will help you do it even better.
Your eventual choice in feeders will depend on things like the type of birds using them, how many birds will be using them, how old or large the birds are, your specific chicken coop setup, and more! For example, your baby chickens are most likely not going to eat from the same feeder as your larger mature birds or turkeys, if you have them. Your less dominant birds will also have a hard time feeding if there isn't enough room as well! If you have a considerably large flock, you may consider a range feeder that doesn’t require you to spend time frequently refilling it. It should be noted that large feeders also tend to let feed stew, which can lead to spoiling, clogging, or moisture absorption. Feed should always be checked on to make sure it is still fresh and flowing. There is no “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to feeders or waterers for that matter. To help, we’ve provided you with a list of different types of feeders in varying price ranges that should be compatible with most if not all customer’s flocks.
Trough feeders are a very popular design of feeder. As you probably already guessed, they look like a horse trough but much much smaller. While they are great for chicks because of their being close to the ground, they are also a perfectly fine choice for mature birds as well. Trough feeders can feed a small or medium sized flock all at once! Just make sure you allow for about 1” - 1.5” of space per each bird to eat from. Because of their close proximity to the ground, trough feeders are susceptible to getting debris or droppings in them. It’s often a good idea to put the trough at about the height of your average bird’s back. Raising it a tad off of the ground drastically reduces wasted and tainted feed. Trough feeders are typically made from plastic or galvanized metal. They can also be a popular place for your birds to roost and thus get droppings in the feed. This is why many trough feeders feature an anti-roosting bar or a reel top feature. This rolls birds who try to roost off the top of your feeder and prevents them from getting droppings in your feed. While they all are relatively inexpensive, below you’ll find a few trough feeders from a few different price ranges that we sell on eFowl.com.
*Low Price Range*
Brower Slide Top Feeder: This feeder has a sliding top with holes in it to help your birds refrain from fighting over an eating spot. It also comes in 3 different sizes: 12”, 18”, and 24”, featuring 14, 22, and 30 holes respectively. Unit is made with galvanized steel.
Plastic Chick Feeder: This plastic chick feeder is 20” long and can hold 1.5 pounds of feed. It’s designed for use with chicks and comes in various colors to attract their attention.
*Higher Price Range*
Brower Poly Trough Feeder with Grill: The Brower Poly Trough Feeder is a much longer version of a trough feeder, coming in lengths of 48” and 60”. This feeder is designed to handle larger birds and flocks and features a feed saving grill.
Range feeders are a popular option for people who have larger flocks and/or less time to fill up feed. These types of feeders typically work well with free range chickens as they hold much more feed and can be left in a central location of the range to be feasted on by all. Range feeders come in many different sizes ranging from 50 to 800 lbs! Your price range usually coincides with the capacity of the feeder. Lower priced range feeders are usually going to be able to hold less feed, so think about the size of your flock and the setup of your farm before choosing! A very important fact to remember with range feeders is that while they have much more capacity, it should still always be full of fresh feed. Getting a range feeder for a small amount of birds with the mentality that you will never have to refill it is a mistake. This only allows the feed to stew, absorb moisture, and spoil, which can either get your birds sick or leave them hungry and malnourished.
*Lower Price Range*
Kuhl 50 Pound Range Feeder: Holding 50 pounds of feed, this is on the smaller side of range feeders. Like most range feeders, this unit is designed with UV inhibited plastic in order to withstand the long days in the sun.
Kuhl Chukar Range Feeder: Also having a 50 pound capacity, the Kuhl Chukar Range Feeder is designed for chukars. Like the universal model, this unit also has a feed saving pan and is designed with UV-inhibited waterproof plastic.
*Higher Price Range*
Kuhl Range Feeder with Rain Shield: This range feeder holds 300 pounds of feed! It has a rain shield to also give the feed the utmost in protection. Great for free range birds.
Brower Game bird Range Feeder: This unit holds 175 pounds of feed. It also has an adjustable feed slide that allows you to control the outflow of feed to your birds.
Hanging feeders are usually on the smaller side in terms of feed capacity. And yes, they do in fact hang from something as opposed to sit on the ground. Hanging feeders give birds 360 degrees of space to eat from and since they’re suspended, they don't allow as much debris and droppings into the feed. It also protects from rodents potentially snagging your feed. Most, if not all hanging feeders that we sell at eFowl.com are >$30.
30 Pound Brower Hanging Chick Feeder: With a tapered body that helps save feed, this plastic feeder is one of the most popular ones on the market. It also has 3 opening adjustment settings so you can coordinate the feed opening size to the size of the chicks trying to eat from it. Works well on birds aged 1 day to 6 weeks old.
Brower Galvanized Hanging Feeder: This model also holds 30 lbs, but is designed for birds of all ages and is designed from galvanized metal. Longer-lasting than plastic, a metal feeder will be around for years to come!
4-H Poly Hanging Feeder: This plastic feeder comes in three different sizes to match whatever size flock you have: 7, 10, or 25 lbs. With a visible feed level you’ll always know how much you have left and exactly when to refill. 4-H also donates a portion of proceeds to 4-H Educational Programs, which helps build a brighter agricultural future for all of America!