Basic care for chicken during any season involve proper feeding, ensuring that the boxes for nesting are cleaned, among other common daily tasks. However, every season is unique on its own and will require you to deal with different conditions, if you are to keep your chicken healthy. Here, we discuss the common tips that will help you properly take care of your chicken during autumn months. They are useful when dealing with lower temperatures and the changing lengths of days experienced during this season.
• Dealing with reduced lengths of days
For a regular production of eggs, chicken needs approximately 14 hours of daylight. Because of reduced temperatures and shorter lengths of the day during autumn, the chicken may take longer to naturally lay eggs. To deal with this, you may use an artificial light source which may lead the chicken into thinking they are experiencing the natural warmth and normal lengths of day. This may, however, be very stressful and should not be overdone.
• Keep the chicken warm
Chicken can naturally keep their bodies warm by doing certain things and so are not affected too much by cold. Roosting together and flapping the wings are some of the natural methods that chicken use to keep warm during autumn. However, if the cold is too much to handle for the chicken, many people resort to warming the chicken houses. This practice may also have the downside of increasing moisture in the coop. During cold autumn it is better practice to change the direction of your Outpost Hen House so that it is not directly facing the prevailing winds.
• Supplement the birds’ diet with protein
Protein is the major component of chicken feathers. Due to moulting that occurs during autumn, the proteins are used for regrowing feathers. This has a negative impact on egg-production since eggs are also made of proteins. All these can have a serious effect on the hen. It is, therefore, advisable to find a way of supplementing the chicken diets with protein. The main sources of protein for the birds include niacin, fish meat, cauliflower, oats, and broccoli. The seeds of pumpkin and spinach are also great sources of protein for the birds.
• Deal with moulting
During moulting, the birds lose most of the old feathers in their bodies. In the place of the old ones, new feathers regrow to cover the bodies of these birds. This requires a lot of protein consumption in the chicken diet. Hence, to ensure minimum impact of moulting on the hens during autumn, feed them on lots and lots of protein feeds.
The most important things to do during autumn are to keep the chicken at top health status and ensure they are fed on diets full of important nutrients, essential vitamins and lots of protein diets. This will help them to regrow a lot of beautiful feathers in a short period of time and hence start laying eggs. Although mostly hardy and independent, the birds still require some attention if they are to stay healthy and productive. Anyway, autumn is a good season for chicken rearing compared to most other seasons. You get more relaxing time as the above-mentioned practices are not very intensive to you as a chicken-keeper.