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Unhulled millet for day-old chicks - Page 2

post #11 of 15

Okay. I am going to make a long post with lots of suggestions. :)

 

First, here's a thread I made with more recipes. I don't know if there is one you can use, but it will hopefully give you ideas. I know one recipe is GF but it has oats.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1003171/the-great-big-homemade-chicken-feed-recipe-sharing-thread

 

Here is a recipe that is not "complete" but is the basis for a chickens diet. You could use this as a base and supplement with food scraps, fodder, free-range/forage, mealworms, etc.

 

Quote:
 

Grain-Free Chicken Feed Recipe

45 lbs white proso millet

27 lbs safflower seed

20 lbs sunflower seed chips

8 lbs black or red flax seeds

total: 100 lbs feed

approximately 15-18% protein content

 

http://hopecentric.com/grain-free-chicken-feed/

 

Food scraps: Chickens can eat most things. Vegetables, fruit, even milk in moderation. Meat scraps are also fine.

 

Fodder:

 

Most fodder systems use wheat/rye/barley. Some people sprout sunflowers, but that is more of a treat.  This will show you how the process goes:

 

http://www.peakprosperity.com/wsidblog/80359/diy-home-fodder-system

 

I do not know of anyone doing fodder with pseudograins but I am sure it could be done.

 

This site is meant for people but may give you ideas:

 

https://sproutpeople.org/seeds/nuts/

 

It would have to be something that sprouts fast... I can't find information on teff but would look into it.

 

Some people are growing these as "microgreens" which is really the same thing as fodder. The question is: nutritionally, are they comparable to wheat/etc fodder? I think it would be so. Millet, quinoa and amaranth are all being used.

 

http://www.greenharvest.com.au/SproutingAndMicrogreens/MicrogreensGrowingInformation.html

 

You can find information on mealworms on BYC.

post #12 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by junebuggena View Post
 

I will start by saying, that if you give each bird 10 sq ft of run space, they will graze it down to the dirt in a matter of months. If you want them to spend most of their lives on grass, you will need to double the run space, at least. You may want to consider having multiple large runs for rotation grazing, or a tractor type coop/run that can be moved as needed.

Secondly, no one grain will be sufficient to cover the nutritional needs of a chicken. You run the risk of serious nutritional deficiencies by feeding primarily one grain. 

Also, you need to be careful about feeding too much flax. It can cause mottled yolks and can make the eggs taste fishy.

Having said that, my chickens, both chicks and adults, enjoy millet sprays as treats. And they can be sprouted and used as fodder, which they also love. You'll have to make sure that the chicks have access to grit.


I grew some fox tail  millet this year, but can't seem to get the chickens to eat it.  I hung some of the stalks upside down in the coop thinking them would come by and pick some off.  I shelled some off on the floor.  The only way they will eat it is out of my hand.  Any suggestions?

post #13 of 15

Maybe strip some of the seeds off and sprinkle it in their feed to help them develop a taste for it. Or mix it into their scratch. Sometimes, it can take a flock time to get used to a new food or treat.

post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by junebuggena View Post
 

Maybe strip some of the seeds off and sprinkle it in their feed to help them develop a taste for it. Or mix it into their scratch. Sometimes, it can take a flock time to get used to a new food or treat.


Can they pick it off the stalk themselves, assuming they learn to like it.?

post #15 of 15

Yes, they will eat it straight off the stems. 

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