Originally Posted by Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay
I'd skip any kind of corn and just feed a quality complete layer ration. Adding corn will simply dilute the essential amino acids the birds will consume as well as the supplemental vitamins and minerals.
Originally Posted by Diannastarr
there is no question about feeding a good quality layer feed , i would say that description can also mean a great quality feed you can make your self & then always feeding free choice 24/7 , but from what i gather there is plenty of cracked ground up corn in most all chicken feeds& used as a filler, but its a known fact that whole grains have a lot more nutrition & has corn oil & starches providing necessary food elements that provide energy that helps to keep our birds warm then any cracked grains ever will. our free range flock has not had any problems from our adding in more nutrition. in fact adding in whole grains has had a positive effect & its certainly a healthier alternative , plus adding in whole Milo, wheat, oats, and other whole grains chia & flax seeds is always a better idea so I'm going to stick with whole corn seeds & grains. Besides whole corn is better, then cracked depleted dried out old dead corn, & the benefit of feeding whole grains is soooo much better then any cracked corn based scratch mixes, so why buy it..? its just a waist of money knowing full well cracked corn has no nutritional value , its not logical to purchase some thing that is like feeding card board or air to our birds, wile paying the same price for cracked corn Vs whole corn, so being more careful about nutrition has payed off for us, its the key to our healthy productive birds & it certainly cant hurt, we also feed vitamins & minerals so , we have no worries about any imbalances by adding in whole grains & our birds are laying even more & larger eggs now then ever before as they are going into their second year & at the same time they are molting..! so its true whole grains have a lot more nutritional value that can help our birds deal with the stress of laying all those giant eggs every day & again why feed junky old dead cracked corn, it cost the same compared to whole corn , our flock has not had any adverse affects from our adding in more nutrition. so im going to stay with whole corn & other whole grains & seeds every winter..!! plus knowing that cracked corn can lead to sour crop issues in pigeons, is a real concern & thank you Teach97 for that information.
It is true that once ground or cracked, seeds of any kind will lose their nutritional value, primarily the vitamins will slowly degrade but it isn't instantaneous. Corn cracked yesterday is just as nutritious as whole corn. Corn cracked 6 months ago is a different story.
While corn by itself isn't extremely nutritious and wouldn't serve as the sole ingredient in a ration, it is NOT a filler. First of all, corn is the easiest grain for chickens to digest.
Every ingredient in chicken feed has a nutritional purpose for being there based on well over a hundred years of poultry nutrition research.
Corn is the main ingredient in most feeds made in North America and to a lesser extent other continents because it is a relatively inexpensive option to provide the nutrients it offers. The need for metabolizable energy in a feedstuff should not be underestimated. If fed free choice, birds tend to eat to satisfy their energy needs
In addition to energy, corn provides a fair amount of the necessary quantities of zinc, iron, phosphorus, manganese, selenium, vitamins B6, thiamine and niacin
It only contains about 8% crude protein but is not devoid of essential amino acids. Corn contains a fair amount of leucine, alanine, glutamic acid, proline and valine.
Other feed ingredients like legumes and synthetic AAs supplement other essential amino acids.
Yellow corn in N. America also provides the pigment xanthophyll, which enhances the yellow color of egg yolks.
So while it isn't particularly nutritious or a complete food by any stretch of the imagination, corn isn't devoid of nutrition.
I think many people tend to generalize about whether something is good or bad in absolute terms. Most things belong more in the grey area.