What to choose feeders for chickens and poultry?
Let’s start with the feeders
What are hopper and trough feeders? What are they characterized by?
Automatic feeders for hens and other breeding birds – when is it worth thinking about this investment?
Drinkers and feeders for hens and poultry – how to improve mass watering of poultry?
If we breed poultry: hens, geese, ducks, broilers, turkeys and other breeding birds, our task is to create good conditions for their growth. Regardless of the size of our chicken coop or farm, it is also worth thinking about the convenience of watering and feeding them. Today, in the era of modern equipment, many positive changes have also taken place in the field of poultry farming. Comfortable drinkers and feeders for hens and poultry are already the norm on the market today. Manufacturers of this type of equipment compete with each other in more and more convenient solutions that will make life easier for every breeder. If you want to buy drinkers and feeders, let’s first consider the features that should characterize the most useful and convenient for our breeding.
Depending on the number of poultry we breed, we have to choose the right type of feeders and decide on the most convenient place for us and the animals to place them. When choosing feeders for chickens and other breeding birds, we should also take into account such factors as: the type of feed we prefer, the species and breed of poultry, and the general breeding system. Small flocks of poultry do not require so much automated feeding equipment. Therefore, the purchase of such equipment will not cost us that much. In such a situation, non-mechanical trough, gutter or hopper feeders should be enough for us. Their assembly requires some work, but they fulfill their role perfectly.
Cylindrical feeders (in other words: bell-shaped) feeders contain a feed container in the construction. We attach it to the base with a hanger and a special rod used to regulate the amount of feed. Backfill feeders are suitable only for feeding poultry with loose, granulated and – most importantly – dry feed.
Trough (trough) feeders are used to feed farmed birds with moist fodder. They are characterized by a galvanized sheet metal structure or made of plastic. This construction is stable and safe for animals. Regardless of whether we have invested in a hopper or trough feeder, we must remember to clean them regularly and replenish the feed. Attention to hygiene is one of the factors determining the good health of our kennel.
Automatic feeders for hens and other breeding birds - when is it worth thinking about this investment?
It is worth thinking about buying automatic poultry feeders in the case of a large farm, when manual cleaning and replenishment of food is breakneck. Automatic feeders stay clean for a much longer time compared to non-mechanical ones, so you should consider buying them. It will freeze for sure! Among this type of devices that improve bird breeding, we have three basic ones available on the market: chain feeder, tube and tube feeder and a compact system. The common denominator of these feeders is an important structural element, called the feed silo. The chain feeder is a system that functions in a closed system, and the feed carrier is a chain that is mounted on the bottom of the feed gutters. The advantage of this solution is that we hang the long gutter at a height appropriate for our animals. We can then be sure that all animals from our breeding will reach for feed whenever they get hungry. We usually use this type of feeder for cage, bedding, slatted and floor systems.
The tube and tube feeder is a feed supply system that does not operate in a closed system. Its construction is characterized by a main pipe with narrow ducts leading to round hoppers. We have here the possibility to monitor the amount of distributed feed, thanks to the equipment with sensors. The discussed solution works well in bedding farming.
Among the automatic types of feeders, we also have a compact system, which is somewhat a simplification of the discussed tube-tube feeder. It consists of a main pipe that feeds the feed directly into the hopper. Here, too, we can control the amount of feed supplied through special sensors. This type of feeder is recommended for turkeys, broilers, ducks and laying hens.
Currently, we have drop and bucket drinkers at our disposal. Manufacturers of this type of drinkers recommend using them in a battery cage system and in chick hatcheries. Their construction consists of special dispensers that “call” water by pressing the valve button. The drinkers also contain gutters or bowls that prevent water from splashing onto the litter and ensure that we use only as much water as is actually needed. We need to plan the drip drinkers in such a way that there is one drinker for about 10 pieces. Of course, their amount depends on the size of the animals and their current water needs. When assembling drinkers, we should remember to place them at a reasonable distance from feeders and feed lines, so as to eliminate potential contamination of the water with fodder. Most automatic drinkers consist of:
- dispenser of medicines and vitamin supplements;
- water filter;
- pressure reducer
- a valve designed to distribute water to drinkers;
- a manometer for measuring pressure .
An investment in waterers and feeders adequate for our poultry farming will certainly result in good health of our animals, which will translate into profits in the form of regular laying of eggs by hens and healthy development of e.g. broilers.