How Much Food Do Chickens Need Per Day? An Aussie Guide

How Much Food Do Chickens Need Per Day? An Aussie Guide

Today, we’re tackling a question that many chicken owners ask us: “How much food do chickens need per day?”

Chickens’ dietary needs can be as diverse as the breeds themselves. Whether you’ve got laying hens or meat birds will change their meal requirements.

We’ll delve into these variations so you can ensure your chooks are getting just what they need.

We’ll also discuss free range foraging and its role in supplementing feed intake, why balanced feed is critical, benefits of using a treadle chicken feeder, plus handy tips to manage daily feeding without fuss.

So let’s dive in and answer the question together, “How much food do chickens need per day?”

Understanding Chicken Dietary Needs

Chooks are incredible critters, yet to keep them content and in top shape you must be familiar with their dietary needs. Chickens aren’t just garbage disposals; they have specific nutritional requirements that vary depending on factors such as age, breed, and purpose.

Nutritional Requirements

A balanced diet should include proteins for growth and egg production. Proteins can come from various sources including meat scraps or commercially available feed mixes specifically designed for poultry nutrition.

Carbohydrates give energy while vitamins and minerals promote health and vitality. Grains like corn or wheat provide carbs whereas leafy greens supply necessary vitamins.


A chicken’s dietary requirements vary based on age and purpose. Laying hens require extra calcium to create strong shells.

Provide grit made from oyster shells separately to allows layers to get extra calcium without over-supplementing other birds. Similarly meat breeds may require higher protein content to help increase their size.

The same goes for age differences: chicks grow fast and demand high-protein diets whilst older chooks have slower metabolisms and can thrive with a lower protein intake.

Understanding Chicken Dietary Needs

Determining Daily Food Intake for Chickens

Figuring out the quantity of food your chickens require each day is not a straightforward answer. The daily food intake can depend on various factors such as the breed, age, and purpose of the chicken.

How Much Food Do Chickens Need Per Day?

Generally speaking, adult chickens consume about 120-150g of feed per day. The amount you feed chickens may differ based on the size and lifestyle of the bird.

Chickens drink about 500ml of water each per day. Ensure your chickens have a constant supply of clean water.

Factors Affecting Chicken Food Intake

Daily food intake varies depending on the size and breed of your chickens. Larger breeds tend to eat more than smaller ones – simple logic really.

Laying hens or meat chickens may require additional nutrition because egg production and muscle growth puts extra demand on their bodies. If you have these types in your flock, make sure they’re getting enough protein-rich feeds like layer feed.

The Role Of Free Range Foraging

Chickens free ranging will likely find some tasty bugs or fresh greens themselves. This natural foraging should make up no more than 20% of their daily food intake. Too much grain-based foraging can lead to obesity or nutritional imbalances.

Free range feeding also encourages exercise and allows your chooks to embrace their natural instincts, keeping them happy and healthy.

Adjusting Feed for Seasonal Changes

Australian seasons can affect your chickens’ dietary needs too. In colder months, they might need more energy-dense foods to stay warm while during moulting season (usually spring) a protein boost is necessary for feather regrowth.

In short, when it comes to feeding chickens, understanding their individual needs and observing them closely is key.

Adjusting Feed for Seasonal Changes

Jordan’s Tip: 

You may ask yourself whether buying commercial feed or making homemade organic chicken feed is better? Well, each has its pros and cons. Shop-bought feeds guarantee a nutritionally complete meal without guesswork involved while going DIY gives more control over ingredients but requires careful planning to ensure nutritional adequacy.

Reviewing the Coops and Cages Treadle Chicken Feeder

The Coops and Cages Treadle Chicken Feeder is a fantastic solution for those wanting to manage their chickens’ daily food intake effectively.


Firstly, let’s chat about capacity. The Treadle Chicken Feeder can hold up to 7.2kg of food which is enough to feed a small flock of 6 hens for a week or so.

The feeder gives you peace of mind knowing that your flock will be well-fed even when you’re busy or away from home. It reduces how often you need to refill the feed while making sure each bird gets its share.


We reckon one thing many folks appreciate about this feeder is ease-of-use — both from their perspective as owners but also for their chickens.

Topping up feed is simple because of its large holding capacity while cleaning isn’t much fuss either due to its wide opening lid. As far as your feathered mates go? They’ll quickly get the hang of stepping onto the treadle to access their food.

Protect Valuable Feed

Anyone raising chickens knows that rats, mice and native birds love to steal your chicken’s food. Our clever Treadle Chicken Feeder can only be opened by fully grown chickens, keeping unwanted pests out!

This not only minimises wastage and saves feed costs, but it also keeps out diseases that vermin bring.

Protect Valuable Feed

Tips for Managing Chicken Feed Intake

Keeping your chickens well-fed isn’t just about dumping a pile of feed into their coop. They require an appropriate amount of quality food to stay healthy chickens.

Using High-Quality Feed

Avoid skimping on quality when it comes to chicken feed. Always opt for high-quality feeds packed with all the essential nutrients needed by your feathered friends. Our Treadle Feeder ensures fresh supply as it protects valuable feed from rain and pes

Impact of Inadequate Space on Chicken Welfare

FAQs in Relation to How Much Area Does a Chicken Need

How Much Space Does A Chicken Need In Metres?

A typical chook needs a bare minimum of 0.37 square metres for coop space and around 1-2 square metres for outdoor roaming.

How Big Of An Area Per Chicken?

The general rule is roughly 2-3 square feet per bird inside the coop, but outside they’ll appreciate having closer to eight square feet each.

How Much Space Do You Need For Backyard Chickens In Australia

According to the RSPCA, a minimum space of 3-4 square feet is legally required per chicken for movement. However, it is recommended to provide each chicken with a more spacious 4-5 square feet to ensure their comfort.

How Much Room Do I Need For Chicken?

You’d want approximately 2-3 square feet per hen in the house and up to ten in their run if possible.

Jordan’s Wrap

In conclusion, understanding how much area does a chicken need, and meeting the space requirements of chickens are fundamental aspects of responsible and sustainable chicken ownership.

Providing adequate space is not just a legal requirement but also a key factor in ensuring the health, well-being, and productivity of your flock.

A holistic approach that ensures the appropriate coop size, sufficient nesting boxes, and consideration for the specific needs of different chicken breeds is essential when coop planning.

Ultimately, a well-thought-out approach to chicken space management leads to happier, healthier birds and a more successful chicken keeping experience.