If you remember from part 1 of the DIY chicken feeder, we have a bucket full of food but no lid. And the new chooks just didn’t get the nozzle thing. So it was time to look for a ‘new idea’.
I was considering the ‘Bulk Chicken Feeder’ by Rob Bob which was easy and cheap to make. And he has tried, tested and improved it over time. Lots of great advice there. But I stopped short of starting the construction as I would have to go out and get a rectangular bucket which I did not have on hand. And also, I thought about it and figured that the mice would probably still get into the food (and have a party when the chooks are asleep!). Somehow the local mice seem to have acrobatic genes; they can jump, leap and swing whenever they smell food!
So I decided to go with something that I had parts for, in the shed. Looking for more ideas, I stumbled upon this ‘DIY no spill chicken feeder’ by Karen (not me). I decided to use this idea and customise it to our needs. I’ll just insert the picture from her article here so we can refer to it for the modifications. I should have taken a picture of ours while assembling but I didn’t 😦
Starting from the top to the bottom (used 90mm stormwater PVC pipes and fittings):
- Added a cap to the top of 26″ plastic pipe (you’ll need this if the feeder can get exposed to the elements)
- Added a ‘double-ended’ cap (M/F) between “Y” connector and 6″ pipe (this will stop the food from dropping below the “Y” connector and eliminate need to ‘stuff’ up the 6″ pipe, to stop old food getting stuck there)
- Did not use end cap at the bottom as the feeding tube has already been terminated earlier (before the 6″ pipe)
- Instead used the end cap for the 3″ outlet overnight so as the ‘acrobatic’ mice are kept out!
So here’s a picture of mine (with Henny and Penny feeding together!) As you can see, the outlet should not get exposed to the elements as it is facing inwards inside the chook house. If you are installing this outside, you might have to improvise and find some way to put in an ‘awning’. Maybe an elbow with the bottom cut out?
The good thing about this feeder is that you can make the top tube as long as you like (mine was just restricted by the height of the chook house) so as to be able to store more food. It has a small footprint and is durable. You may need a few of them if you have a large flock but for the backyard flock with a limit of 5 in this area, I think this work pretty well. Also, no glue required, just assemble all the parts and it works beautifully. So if you need to customise the height for your chooks, you can observe them feeding a few times, and then if necessary, dismantle to reduce height of bottom pipe or outlet attachment (assuming that you’ve made them longer first, like I did).
Here’s a picture of the parts I still have to make another feeder. It consists of the “Y” connector, M/F end cap and the last bit of PVC pipe, in the sequence that they are to be assembled. Hope the bottom part that I’ve improvised to eliminate old food stuck at the bottom is clearer.
Now that we’re settled for the chooks, stay tuned to see how I again improvised this for the quails (the “Y” connector alone is too tall for little birds) since the milk bottle quail feeder didn’t keep the mice out.