As I was refilling the feeder a couple of days ago, I happened to notice some spilled scratch on the workbench. Mindful of wasting and little critters, I brushed the 10 pieces or so of scratch into my hand and tossed it in the feeder with the rest of the feed pellets. Big mistake!
That afternoon, when I went out to check for eggs, I found the entire feeder emptied. Feed pellets were scattered all over the inside of the coop. Every pellet, except for a few orphans, was on the coop floor. The feeder was empty, twirling in the slight breeze! One of the chickens either smelled or discovered the few morsels of scratch amongst the pellets and decided to search for every last bit.
Did they take their time and methodically search the feeder one pellet at a time? Or, was it frantic, like feeding time in the shark tank? I can only imagine pellets flying everywhere in the chicken’s determination in finding those hidden treats. Even though I missed the show, the two broody girls in the boxes, Dolly and Autumn, were privy to the entire escapade! I removed the feeder, washed it completely and filled it with feed only. So far, feeder etiquette has resumed. It has now been 2 days.
I learned my lesson. Never underestimate the smarts of a chicken and the power of treats.