Your backyard chickens are likely to be healthier and more productive if you provide them with a clean, fresh supply of water every day and nutritious food from chicken feeders at least once a day. That’s why when it comes to raising chickens, one of the most liimportant decisions you’ll make is what type of chicken feeder to use.
This care will allow your chickens to have easy access to food and water while keeping it clean. There are a variety of different feeders available on the market, each with its pros and cons. So, which one is right for you?
Types of chicken Feeders
Automatic chicken feeder
The word “automatic” here refers to a feeder that responds to the needs of the chickens. Anything that you can fill (gravity, treadle, hanging, or trough) is a type of automated feeder, regardless of the method of filling.
However, when people refer to an automated feeder, they usually mean a treadle feeder. In this system, the chicken stepping on a footplate opens the feed box, allowing them to eat their food.
As the food comes in a sealed container, they are thought to be reasonably pest-resistant. It also helps to maintain the feed’s freshness and moisture content.
Gravity chicken feeder
For the most part, gravity feeders are the least expensive option accessible at feed shops and online stores. They are typically composed of plastic or aluminum, making them lightweight and easy to use.
This type of feeder is an open container with a feed tray at the bottom. And because you refill them from the top, the oldest food is consumed first. These types may also be hung on the wall or stood on their own.
Hanging chicken feeder
Gravity chicken feeders are the most common type of hanging feeder. When setting up one, place it in an accessible location so many chickens can reach their food at once! They’re easy enough for anyone with minimal DIY skills and work best when kept within your coop or similar enclosure.
Trough chicken feeder
Using trough feeders for young chickens or Bantam breeds is a great idea! Chicks often utilize these feeders until they’re old enough to eat from adult bowls.
Large chickens don’t work well because the bird can knock it over with its scratching feet, which then causes a mess in your yard. Another downside is that birds can sit on them and defecate into their food, so you’ll need frequent cleaning.
- A pottery feeder might be your best option if you simply have a few hens (preferably bantams).
- Rubber feed bowls are also popular because they are durable, simple to clean, and can remain for a long time.
- The treadle chicken feeder has a treadle step. Chickens step on the treadle and the lid of the treadle chicken feeder opens.
- Lastly, Mason jars may be put to good use raising chicks. These are suitable for chicks up to the age of six weeks, after which they will need a more enormous container.
The best chicken feeders for backyard chicken keepers
We reviewed the available feeders and came up with quick comparison to help you decide which feeder type is best suited to keep your flock well fed. Continue reading after the comparison for a deep dive of features and pros and cons.
Grandpa’s Feeders Automatic Chicken Feeder
Forty pounds of food is adequate for around 12 chickens for about a week and change in this Grandpa’s Automatic Chicken Feeder. If you routinely travel or work late hours, this is a perfect option for you.
Mixed-flock usage is not suggested for this product. Only use mature chickens to avoid young chicks getting entangled when the larger birds step off.
Using the feeder makes a lot of noise, so the chickens may need some time to adjust. Even though most chickens will need some training, they should be able to adapt to the feeder very quickly.
- Keeping rats and wild birds away from food means no more stolen food.
- A way to keep the birds from messing up the food they eat
- It removes the need to monitor the feed daily.
- Reducing feed costs by preventing spilled feed
- Refilling every 7-10 days for 4-6 birds is sufficient.
- Training is required
- Food doesn’t always fall on its own
- The noise it makes might scare away chickens
- The corners are sharp
- This product is not waterproof
Runner Up Feeder: RentACoop Bucket
The RentACoop Chicken Feeder has a capacity of 20lb and is completely BPA-free. Feed waste is minimized, pests are kept at bay, and the feed is dry with this hand-operated feeder. It is a simple, durable, and long-lasting piece of equipment.
Multiple chickens may eat from the same feeder at the same time. The bucket can hold up to 20 pounds of grain, enough to feed eight hens for a week on one load.
- Weatherproof, this feeder may be used both inside and outdoors
- An insect-proof design
- The customer service was outstanding
- Reduces the amount of food that is dropped on the floor
- Detailed instructions and a setup video are included
- Only pellets may be used.
- Plastic hangers are prone to breaking.
- In certain cases, it’s impossible to use the feeder with large-combed roosters.
Best Hanging Feeder: Harris Farms
In addition to holding up to 15 pounds of feed, the Harris Farms Hanging Poultry Feeder features galvanized steel. This is a good alternative if you’re on a budget yet want a durable feeder.
It is light and sturdy and can be hung up quickly and effortlessly. Having rolled edges prevents cuts and scrapes, which is beneficial. This is a long-lasting feeder that will do the job you need for many years.
- Heavy-duty steel material
- Incredibly reasonable price
- The hopper’s height may be adjusted.
- A 15-pound capacity can feed six chickens for around ten days.
- Can be hung or stood on its own
- Feed wastage is not reduced
- No lid included
- Feed is accessible to insects
Best Budget Feeder: Kaytee Gravity Bin
Kaytee is a well-known manufacturer of pet supplies, and this gravity feeder will not disappoint. Best for those on a budget, it can hold up to two pounds of food and is made from plastic to be suitable for use in summer or winter.
This product may be hung, but there are no safeguards to prevent birds from taking or spoiling the meal.
- Feeder brackets are included
- Grit and oyster shells may also be stored in this container
- It’s big enough to hold a lot of feed
- Many different shades to select from
- Not rodent-proof
- No detailed instructions provided
Best No Waste Feeder: Royal Rooster
The innovative structure of the Royal Rooster Poultry Feeder reduces food waste. It includes a plastic lid guard that keeps the feed dry and can be lifted when the feeder has to be refilled with fresh ones.
The feeder features a cover at the bottom that helps minimize waste. Each feeder may accommodate as many as six chickens. Using the Royal Rooster Chicken Feeder is a great way to save money on feed.
- Ensures dry feed throughout the year
- Reduces the amount of wasted feed
- It’s waterproof so that it may be used outdoors
- Simple to clean up
- Not that affordable
- This feeder is suitable for a few chickens only.
- Can only feed six chickens at a time
Miller 12lbs Galvanized Hanging Poultry Feeder
This hanging feeder contains 12 pounds of feed (about 20 cups). It can provide three to four days’ worth of food for up to ten adults. However, it doesn’t have a lid included.
The galvanized metal construction of this feeder ensures that it will not rust. It’s an excellent alternative for those who don’t want their feeder sitting on the ground. Also, a mixed flock of adults and young chicks works well with this feeder.
The feeder must be shaken daily for the food to reach the trough. And this feeder also does not do a very good job of keeping the rats out.
- Not susceptible to corrosion
- It keeps getting food from the ground
- It’s easy to put together
- When used outdoors, it is required to have a lid
- A lid is not included
- Will not keep rats away from food
- To fill the troughs, you’ll need to shake the feeder
Little Giant Large Steel Poultry Feeder
Little Giant’s wall-mountable or stand-alone feeder can contain up to 25 pounds of food. It is made with galvanized metal which makes it resistant to corrosion. With the feed saver grid, chickens are prevented from kicking food out of the feeder and soiling their meals.
Adult chickens may use this feeder; however, it is not recommended for baby chicks.
- Feed is protected from the rain
- A lot of food may be stored in this container
- Stop the chickens from contaminating their food
- Food waste is reduced
- Not suitable for use with young chickens
PawHut Automatic Chicken Feeder
Using the PawHut Automatic Chicken Feeder in a chicken coop is terrific for saving space. Thanks to its tightly-fitting waterproof cover, you can be confident that your chicken’s food will be protected from squirrels, rats, and other wild birds.
In addition, a small roof above the feed outlet helps to protect the feed from being contaminated. The feeder won’t rust when it rains or snows. The feeder won’t rust since it’s constructed of galvanized steel.
The big 13-liter capacity of this automated fast-filling feeder makes it ideal for mixed flocks, and it can feed up to four hens at once. A mounting kit is included, allowing you to put the feeder inside and outside of a wood or wire chicken coop, as desired.
- Galvanized steel is resistant to corrosion.
- A wall-mounted design that saves room
- It’s great for a mixed flock and feeds up to four birds at once
- A waterproof cover
- The feed outlet is still accessible to little rats.
Harris Farms Plastic Hanging Poultry Feeder
This Harris Farms Plastic Chicken Feeder is simple, affordable, and has a 10lb capacity. Lids are available separately and are not included during purchase. There is enough food for up to 10 to 25 chickens in this feeder, and since it is made of plastic, it is simple to see when it is time to replenish it.
The tray is prone to separating from the top, causing the feed to spill. Whether the feeder is hanging or placed on the ground, filling and maintaining clean is effortless. However, chickens are prone to scattering their food with this feeder because the feed tray is too shallow.
- There are three different sizes to choose from
- It’s easy to put together
- You have the option of hanging it or placing it on the ground
- It is simple to clean and fill
- Having a shallow trough means that the chickens may easily spread their food
- It does not come with a top to prevent other animals out and keeping moisture
- Easily detaches tray from the top, resulting in waste and spillage of the feed
MuddyHillFarm Single Opening feeder
The MuddyHillFarm Single Opening feeder is a feeder that can be placed on the ground or hung. It can hold about 20 pounds of feed. Making sure that just the chickens are fed is one of the most challenging aspects of poultry feeding. In addition to the cost of providing all the other animals, squirrels and rats may sneak into the chicken food.
The good news is that you don’t have to be worried about your chickens with this chicken feeder. This is a well-known and popular chicken feeder for hens aged 12 weeks.
- This is a highly clean method of feeding
- Protect food from moisture with its cap
- Refilling isn’t necessary very frequently
- This might be pretty costly if you have many chickens since you’ll need many of these.
Premium Chicken Feeder: OverEZ Chicken Feeder 50 lb
The Premium Chicken Feeder: OverEZ Chicken Feeder 30 lb is an excellent feeder for chickens. A thirty-pound capacity may be accommodated by this feeder, which can be used both inside and outdoors.
As a result of the reduced feed waste, this feeder is appropriate for birds older than twelve weeks.
You need to keep in mind that younger chicks won’t be able to use feeders like this since they have to put their heads in to eat.
- It prevents food from becoming moist
- There will be no waste
- A lot of food may fit inside
Farm Tuff Plastic Hanging Poultry Feeder 6
The Farm Tuff Plastic Hanging Poultry Feeder 6 is a terrific option for those on a budget. About six pounds of feed may fit in this chicken feeder. Depending on how many chickens you have, you may have to refill this feeder every day. This feeder has five variable flow rates so that you can fine-tune the amount of food dispensed.
- Well suited for outdoor use
- Great if you have a lot of chickens
- Includes flow rates for feed
- No lid included
little giant plastic dome feeder
Although this feeder is simple, it is effective. This is also the way to go if you want to obtain a good deal on a product.
little giant plastic dome feeder is intended to reduce food spills and soiled surfaces, but it will fall short of the quality of some of the more costly models. This container’s large capacity also features a volume of 60 lbs.
The Little Giant is gravity-fed, which means that when the birds consume more food, more food will be released. It takes just two minutes to mount the Little Giant, and you can easily transfer it from one location to another.
- It’s simple to set up
- Exceptionally useful
- Low-cost option
- Some spillage is prevented by the front edge
- It is difficult for more than one bird to eat at the same time
- Has little capacity for storing food
popetpop chicken feeder trough
Many hens may be fed simultaneously with the POPETPOP Chicken Feeder, which only takes a few seconds to refill.
You’ll see that the top of the feeder has a few bars to stop birds from jumping up and contaminating the food. This feeder is made of plastic, making it simple to clean and rinse.
The only true disadvantage to using a trough feeder is that it leaves a mess behind. You’ll have to be ready for some food spillage around the trough area.
- Rinsing and cleaning are simple
- Incredibly low prices
- A large number of chickens may be fed simultaneously
- Food spillage can’t be avoided
- No lid included
little giant plastic fence feeder with clips
The little giant plastic fence feeder with clips variant comes with clips that make connecting to a wire fence easy. The fence feeder may be set up in minutes after unpacking.
It has a sturdy design and will last for years. This model also comes in a variety of colors and sizes to suit your animals’ specific requirements.
- Very easy to set up
- There could be spilled food
- It doesn’t include a lid
What to know before buying chicken feeders
The location of the feeder is the first thing you should consider. This will determine the size and kind of feeder that should be purchased.
A wall-mounted device, for example, would be ideal for a tiny coop with four chickens since it would not take up a lot of space. However, if you want to keep it outdoors, you’ll need a vermin-proof and waterproof feeder.
The second consideration is your finances. If you’re on a budget, go with a plastic hanging feeder. However, they must be hung in a dry location if you want them to last for years.
Third, you have to look at the product’s quality. You don’t want to purchase feeders regularly, so be sure the one you choose is long-lasting.
Chicken feeders that aren’t constructed to last aren’t worth the money. It’s reasonable to anticipate that they’ll be around for a while. However, if treated with care, plastic and metal will survive a very long time.
Finally, the feeder’s size must be taken into consideration. If you purchase a large capacity feeder for just four chickens, you’re wasting your money. In addition, feed left out too long can begin to mildew and become harmful to hens.
This means that you must choose a feeder suitable for the size of your flock. A 10lb capacity should be used as a general guideline for every six hens.
Buyer’s Guide: Best Chicken Feeders
When it comes to selecting the best chicken feeder for your backyard coop, several factors are taken into account. Avoid food waste by keeping birds from scattering the food and sealing the container tightly.
You, of course, don’t want a chicken feeder that might pose a hazard to your chickens. Chickens may be injured by a variety of feeders on the market. So, if you’re shopping for a chicken feeder, there are a few things to keep in mind here.
Roughly one and a half pounds of food is required weekly by the typical chicken or about one-fourth pound of food every day. Several variables may determine how much your chickens consume, including your kind of chickens and the present environment. For planning reasons, though, you may utilize these figures.
If you have a lot of chickens, you’ll want to acquire a chicken feeder with a large feed capacity. One that can contain enough food for a few days is necessary if you’re going on a trip. You should expect to pay extra for a feeder with a large feed capacity. In addition, you’ll need a place to store it, which might be an issue if you’re working in a tiny area.
A feeder’s safety should be taken into account before buying. The security of a product should be a top priority for companies, but this isn’t always the case. It’s important to remember that chickens are ferocious peckers and will attempt to roost on anything that resembles a good perch.
There is a risk that your bird may injure itself by pecking at tiny metal holes or roosting on sharp objects. As a general rule, it’s always best to take a little bit of caution.
Prices for chicken feeders vary greatly and can depend on the brand, size, and type of feeder you’re looking for. You can find a small, primary feeder for around $10 or spend up to $100 on a high-quality, large model.
The most important thing is to find a feeder that will meet the needs of both you and your chickens. By considering the factors above, you’re sure to find the perfect chicken feeder for your backyard flock.
A chicken feeder made of durable materials can last for years with proper care. Plastic chicken feeders are a popular choice because they’re lightweight and less likely to rust, but they can be scratched and damaged if not careful. Galvanized chicken feeders may be more durable, but they are expensive and may rust if not properly cared for.
It’s important to consider how well the feeder is made and whether it’s something that can be easily repaired if it becomes damaged. Feeders that come with a warranty are always a good option.
The last thing you want is your chicken feeder to cause food wastage. Chickens are messy eaters and can easily spill the feed on the ground. Look for a feeder that will prevent as much spillage as possible and has a design that is easy to clean.
Feeders that come with a roof or have tight-fitting lids are a good choice, as they will help keep the chicken feed dry and prevent it from being wasted.
How big should my chicken feeder be?
A chicken roughly needs 4 inches of space at the feeder to eat chicken feed. It means if you have 4 chickens circumference of the feeder should be 16 inches.
How many chicken feeders do I need for my chicken coop?
It is estimated that one feeder is sufficient for feeding 8-10 chickens. Arrange feeders in a way that every bird can eat from the feeder without any trouble.
Best Chicken Feeders of 2022 Conclusion
Always read customer reviews before making a purchase to see if there are any frequent issues. In addition, be wary of any promises that the feeder entirely removes waste.
There are a variety of chicken feeders on the market, and it can be tough to decide which one is right for you. You can narrow down your choices and find the right chicken feeder for your backyard flock by considering the factors above.