New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Wheatgrass

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

My hens LOVE wheatgrass!!  They've been eating quite a lot of it recently.  My question is ...
Do they need grit?
I rarely give them grit on a regular basis and they stay out in the yard about 5 - 6 hours a day.

post #2 of 20

Hi,
Mine love wheat grass too!

Yes! I would suggest always having grit available as free choice.

ON

"Nothing is lost, nothing is created ... all is transformed. Nothing is the prey of death. All is the prey of life."-- Antoine Béchamp

The "blues"  Ameraucana and Marans
Reply
"Nothing is lost, nothing is created ... all is transformed. Nothing is the prey of death. All is the prey of life."-- Antoine Béchamp

The "blues"  Ameraucana and Marans
Reply
post #3 of 20

While they can probably find enough small stones in the soil, it never hurts to have grit available.

When having problems with chickens stop and think, what would Harlan do?
I've dealt with many thorns in my life and the flower is always worth the effort.

6 Nest rollout nest box plans  http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/287684/new-rollout-nest-design-picture-heavy-edited-1-21

Smoker plans http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/721017/opas-recirculating-smoker

Reply

When having problems with chickens stop and think, what would Harlan do?
I've dealt with many thorns in my life and the flower is always worth the effort.

6 Nest rollout nest box plans  http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/287684/new-rollout-nest-design-picture-heavy-edited-1-21

Smoker plans http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/721017/opas-recirculating-smoker

Reply
post #4 of 20
Thread Starter 

I do leave out some grit as free choice once in a while.  Usually when they get treats.  Since they eat the grass in the yard with out a problem I was concerned about wheatgrass because wheatgrass is so potent.

post #5 of 20

Can anyone advise at what age the baby chicks can be given the wheatgrass? I have read this  article and have tested our wheat berries - it did grow to 8 inches of wheat grass very quickly. And while I still have about 2 weeks before my first trial to have chicks from incubator project is due, I am thinking when I can start growing the first batch of wheatgrass for them. How early can they be given any grass? A bit OT, but also how early can they be let outside?

Our incubator project - started April 3, 2010 - updated Aug 9, 2010
All of our chickens 2011 - incubator proj2 started March 5, 2011 - updated July 2, 2011
Reply
Our incubator project - started April 3, 2010 - updated Aug 9, 2010
All of our chickens 2011 - incubator proj2 started March 5, 2011 - updated July 2, 2011
Reply
post #6 of 20

Hope,
My experience is wheat grass is very tough! I had flats of wheat grass they played in but did not eat much of it until they were a several months old.
I found that baby chicks from a week or so on enjoyed wheat sprouts or clover sprouts.  As far as how early can they go outside.... It is my opinion to think like a hen, they take the chicks out for short strolls at a very young age.  wink

wawafiveseven,
Again, just always leave grit out for the birds.  It will never hurt.  Chickens do not have teeth, it is how they chew! 

ON

"Nothing is lost, nothing is created ... all is transformed. Nothing is the prey of death. All is the prey of life."-- Antoine Béchamp

The "blues"  Ameraucana and Marans
Reply
"Nothing is lost, nothing is created ... all is transformed. Nothing is the prey of death. All is the prey of life."-- Antoine Béchamp

The "blues"  Ameraucana and Marans
Reply
post #7 of 20

How do you grow flats of wheatgrass for the chickens?  Do you germinate it in soil?  Don't they eat the dirt when they graze?  Can you grow it in some other substrate so it won't foul the coop  once they've eaten all the green?  Where do you buy the wheatgrass seeds?

May all your eggs be fertile,
   May your predators be few,
      May your hens be fat and happy,
         And your ribbons all be blue.
Reply
May all your eggs be fertile,
   May your predators be few,
      May your hens be fat and happy,
         And your ribbons all be blue.
Reply
post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by featherbaby 

How do you grow flats of wheatgrass for the chickens?  Do you germinate it in soil?  Don't they eat the dirt when they graze?  Can you grow it in some other substrate so it won't foul the coop  once they've eaten all the green?  Where do you buy the wheatgrass seeds?


You can buy them on line for wheat grass growing.  Me I feed whole grains to my birds, so I buy hard red winter wheat by the 60lb sack. (It is much cheaper at an organic feed/seed store.

For the flats, I do grow the wheat grass in good clean organic soil.  Yes I even break up the roots, so they do pick through the dirt.  (After all it is what chickens do!)  I try and simulate what they do when they have free range without ice and snow.

In winter I will have a shallow box of dusty dry soil for them to dust bath in.  I will toss the mats of wheat grass in that box.  I personally do not see a little dry soil in my deep litter as "fouling".  Chickens and clean soil go hand and hand  IMHO.

If you want to avoid the dirt you could just grow the wheat grass on coco mats or in a sprouting jar.  Being sure to wash the sprouts often.

ON

"Nothing is lost, nothing is created ... all is transformed. Nothing is the prey of death. All is the prey of life."-- Antoine Béchamp

The "blues"  Ameraucana and Marans
Reply
"Nothing is lost, nothing is created ... all is transformed. Nothing is the prey of death. All is the prey of life."-- Antoine Béchamp

The "blues"  Ameraucana and Marans
Reply
post #9 of 20

I'm more conservative with chicks the first week or two.

If the weather is good and a suitable temperature for them, I've had them outside for brief periods as early as one week old.  They spend more time outside as they get older.

I don't give chicks anything but starter or starter/grower the first week.  I just want to get them stabilized, after everything they've been through.  This is with shipped chicks.  When I do start giving them other foods, it's only a small amount, very finely ground and they get clean sand lightly sprinkled in a small container, so they don't over eat the sand.  Sometimes it's hard to find chick grit.  I grind up things like hulled sunflower seed.

For wheat grass, I usually just snip it really tiny for chicks, with a scissors.  I take some blades of wheat grass, barely move the scissors and snip again.  It looks pulverized or pulpy, rather than like pieces of grass.  For larger chickens, I give larger segments, but not whole leaf blades.  When they're eating growing grass, they can just eat what they bite off.  I only grow wheat grass and sprout alfalfa for adult chickens in the winter, when the outdoor forage is under snow.  The rest of the year they forage on their own.

post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 

Thanks Organics North.

Featherbaby, you can probably get the hard red winter berries at a health food store.


Has anyone seen benefits from feeding wheatgrass?

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Feeding & Watering Your Flock