At this time of year, all the animals need a little extra care to see them through the winter. Once anything they might steal is out of the garden in the Autumn, the hens are left out to completely free-range. During the laying season they are locked into their run overnight and during the morning to lay and let out to free-range at lunchtime. Being completely free range in the winter means that they have the full benefit of being able to scrat about wherever they feel the need, plenty of exercise and it means that they aren’t confined to their run when it turns muddy.

feeding hens in winter

We like to give our hens a nice hot breakfast.

Each evening we bring the bucket of poultry food home from the barn with us. It stays on the floor in the kitchen and any vegetable peelings, fat from frying etc go in the top of the bucket, along with a good dollop of vegetable oil.

When I make my coffee in the morning I boil enough water to soak the poultry food, give it a good stir and its ready by the time we go out the door to the barn.

When there are lots of veg peelings say at Christmas, Then I boil up the peelings first and then add them with the water to the mash.

The chickens love this hot mash and always come running out as soon as they see the barn lights go on

Click here to tell us what you do you for your hens in the winter