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Thread: What do you feed your chickens? page

  1. #1
    activia's Avatar
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    What do you feed your chickens?

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    My chickens will be arriving in a couple of weeks.. I know the obvious: bugs/kitchen scraps. I can also get some additional chicken scraps from a grocery store, but they need more protein and more food in general, also they will need some form of calcium so their shells are tougher. I was thinking for now to just get the standard organic mix to supplement until I learned what to feed them. However, if you have experience please let me know what you feed them.
    Primal since March 2011

    Female/29 years old/5' 1"/130ish lbs

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    Neckhammer's Avatar
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    I'm looking to get some too! I love this link Hyperlipid: Fruit and vegetables (13) become eggs

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    I don't know the answer in terms of buying feed. But I can tell you that chickens absolutely love melon rind!
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    Feed them a good organically grown feed without any soya products added to it. They also need clean water (of course) and access to some good crushed shells (Oystershell in the UK) which they store as calcium in their bodies to make the shells of their eggs. Some good sharp grit (Flint or similar) is good for them too as they keep it in their Gizzard to grind up the food they eat.
    Access to grass is good as they will eat some of it and it gives the yolks a lovely dark yellow colour.

    Dave

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    They need bugs. Grubs, grasshoppers, crickets etc. So allowing them to roam is best. If you have kids, have them collect bugs by the jar full. That's what I did for fun as a kid, collected bugs and let them go for the chickens, they went wild for them! The organic feed, will supplement when the bugs are scarce.

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    cori93437's Avatar
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    If you get any mice in your grain bins.... you'd be shocked by what a chicken will do to it!

    Consider a black fly larva set up if they are in your area... great way to generate some bug protein.
    “You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.”
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    activia's Avatar
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    I'm hoping they are going to eat all our misquitoes and ticks!!
    Primal since March 2011

    Female/29 years old/5' 1"/130ish lbs

  8. #8
    Minky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by activia View Post
    I'm hoping they are going to eat all our misquitoes and ticks!!
    No luck on that at our house with the mosquitos, athough I'm sure they eat a few.

    My chickens love everything! I use the 3-day rule on leftovers - so after that the chickens score! And of course any other scraps from the kitchen.

    I found a local farm where I can buy grain for them, and they free range all day in the back yard.

    Love my chickens!

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    Had a farmer tell me once that if you feed them marigolds, it will make the yolks brighter yellow. Don't know if it's true though. Might be worth a try.

  10. #10
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    Until they are well grown, make sure they have free choice access to proper chicken food. You can still feed them scraps, let them forage, catch bugs etc. but it's not worth leaving things to chance. They are not like us, or cattle, they can handle grains and seeds just fine. Just ask for medication and drug free feed. They will need chick starter crumbs for the first few weeks, as they get bigger they can be changed to grower, either crumb or pellets.

    I always fed a mixed scratch grain as well, once a day as a treat, and any kitchen scraps. Pretty much anything you put in a composer is really good for them. They had a big outdoor pen, the run of the yard in the evening, and we're locked in the henhouse at night. For layers, make sure they have free access to oyster shell once they start laying.

    Backyard Chickens is a great forum for help and info.
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