How Much Feed Does a Chicken Eat?

A common question among poultry owners, especially those new to raising birds, is “How much do my birds eat, so I know how much feed to buy?”.  

Below are some general guidelines to go by, keeping in mind that a variety of factors, from weather to other available food sources, can influence the exact amount of prepared feed your birds will consume.

Feeding amounts for newly hatched birds:

Type of Bird Feeding period Total amount of feed
Layer chicks First 10 weeks 9-10 lbs per bird
Broiler chicks (based on Cornish Game Birds) First 6 weeks 8-9 lbs per bird
Turkeys First 12 weeks 72 lbs per bird
Geese First 8 weeks 53 lbs per bird
Ducks First 8 weeks 22 lbs per bird
Gamebirds First 8 weeks 9 lbs per bird

Feeding amounts for laying birds:

Type of Bird Total amount of feed
Chickens 1.5 lbs per bird per week
Turkeys 4 – 5 lbs per bird per week
Geese 3 lbs per bird per week
Gamebirds 1 – 1.5 lbs per bird per week

6 Replies to “How Much Feed Does a Chicken Eat?”

  1. Thanks for the info 🙂 I calculated it for the number of chickens I have and it was pretty close to right on. I had 9 chickens and would buy 50lbs of feed about once a month. And when I calculated it based on your chart I ended up with 54lbs/month. That’s handy to know because I just added more chickens to our flock so now I can have an idea of how much feed I should buy to last out the month.

  2. Went to a seminar in 2011, at the local farm & ranch, store put on by people from Nutrena. I was trying to remember the amounts. I figure 3 oz (instead 2.3 oz) for babies to pullet stage. Hens have been getting roughly 3 oz (instead of 3.5 oz) a day also. Good to know this info….will bookmark it so I can refer to it each spring (getting old…brainpan can only hold so much 😉 ).

  3. I have 140 isa browns and they require 300 lbs a week or my eggs get smaller or skip laying
    all together. (2.2) lbs per bird ….?

    1. Hi Mike,
      That is quite a bit more than average. The numbers listed are just estimates and will depend on any other sources of feed, etc. I would suggest cutting out any scratch or scraps and feeding only layer feed that is balanced with amino acids, vitamins and minerals along with free choice oyster shell. If you are feeding other types of feed the hens may not be getting adequate fortification and may be consuming more to fill their needs. Also keep in mind that your ISAs are hardcore laying birds, so they may require more feed than average because of the number of eggs they are producing. hope this helps you!

  4. Appreciating the dedication you put into your blog and detailed information you present. It’s nice to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same unwanted rehashed information.. Great read!!! I’ve saved your site and I’m adding your RSS feeds to my Google account.

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