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Feeding Locations

Where do you put out food for your peafowl?

I know, this sounds like it has a simple answer, but does it? First, it depends on what food you are feeding, how many birds you are feeding, the weather, etc.

Different Food Containers:

1. You can use dog or cat bowls to contain the main food you are feeding your birds. If you put something powdery out like chick starter it is best to put that in a bowl. I even use a hubcap as a big food dish!

2. For a lot of birds, a long trough or in my case a wide board around 4ft tall works great to spread out the food on and it is long enough that several birds are fine with eating from it at the same time.

3. You can also get those hanging poultry feeders (you don't have to hang it) they sell for chickens that hold a lot of feed. My birds did not really seem to use it so I stopped using that type of container plus I don't like the way those feeders look.

4. For a fun feeding station you can put a stump in your pen and put food on top of it. Eventually your peafowl will get used to flying ontop of it and eating the food.

5. If it rains a lot you might need a covered feeding area. This could be a small roof with food under it or anything.

6. The ground! A lot of times I just throw treats like catfish chow all over the pen. The peafowl get to forage for their treats which can be enriching.

7. Automatic feeder - This is good for a free-range situation. Watch out with using corn though...We went on vacation once and put an automatic feeder in the peafowl pen and it only took corn. Well it put out too much corn and the peafowl did not eat it all. All of that corn attracted raccoons and that was the start of my first predator problems so be careful with this type of feeder.

Situation #1: Breeder Pen (1 peacock & 1-2 peahens)

This is one of the easier situations. With 2 or 3 peafowl you really only need one food dish containing enough food for all of the birds.

Situation #2: Several Peafowl in One Pen:

Currently I have 9 peafowl in one pen. When you have several peafowl in one pen, you can not just put all the food in one food dish or one location. The reason why you should not do this is because of social hierarchy in your flock. The domanant bird (usually a peacock) will scare most of the other birds away from the food until he has his fill. He might allow a peahen he likes to eat with him, but younger birds, especially young males, will have to wait for the others before they can eat. That is why it is best to have several feeding locations so that all the peafowl can get enough to eat and not worry about compeating for food. These feeding locations should be spaced out far enough that one bird cannot hog two feeding locations at once.

Situation #3: Free-Range:

Free-range peafowl get a lot of their food from eating bugs, plants, lizzards, etc. You can feed your free-rangers in a pen so that when you need to catch them up you can easily do it when they enter a pen to eat. Some people just give their free-range birds treats while other people give them a big food container full of regular food for them to eat if they want to. Just know that feeding them helps keep them around instead of wandering off.

Treats (for a list of treats see Treats for Peafowl):

Peafowl get very excited when you bring them treats, but it is important to make sure that even the lowest ranking bird gets treats too. Make sure you throw the treats out all over the pen so that domanant birds cannot guard a pile of treats. If you see a bird having trouble getting treats throw treats as close to them as you can.


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