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What are ways to quickly raise protein levels?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

I need to up the amount of protein that my birds are eating.   The layer feed, plus the greens we give them, plus occasional raw milk does not seem to be enough.


How would you recommend I increase their protein intake?

Barry is father to 21 hens, 3 cockerels, 2 cats and a currently unknown number of babies born today, Nov 10, 2011!
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Barry is father to 21 hens, 3 cockerels, 2 cats and a currently unknown number of babies born today, Nov 10, 2011!
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post #2 of 11

Just this past monday I have been making a big effort to up protein.  The first thing I did was give them a scoop of cat food, then a can of tuna.  Some more things, yogurt, peanut butter, meat scraps, cheese, BOSS... just anything I can think of that they will eat that has protein in it.

 

“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”  ~ Buddha

 

My coop building thread... http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/613051/my-new-breeding-pens-progress-pics

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“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”  ~ Buddha

 

My coop building thread... http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/613051/my-new-breeding-pens-progress-pics

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post #3 of 11

Check around for other feed stores in your area that may carry a different brand of feed than what you are currently using. Different brands can have different protein levels. Also you can give them BOSS (black oil sunflower seeds) as a treat. I sometimes give mine cottage cheese. I save their egg shells and grind them into a powder and mix some into the cottage cheese to up their protein and calcium at the same time.

Mom to 3 sons, 2 horses, 1 Chesapeake, 2 BO's, 1 SLW, and 7 refrigerator chicks (eggs hatched after being refrigerated), they are 5 SLW's and 2 BO/SLW crosses.
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Mom to 3 sons, 2 horses, 1 Chesapeake, 2 BO's, 1 SLW, and 7 refrigerator chicks (eggs hatched after being refrigerated), they are 5 SLW's and 2 BO/SLW crosses.
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post #4 of 11

I take cracked eggs and save them in the refrig until i have a dozen then boil them, cool them and mash them shell and all then feed it to them as a treat.

Living the good life with husband of 33 years, three grown, married children, 4 grandchildren.  And about 550 hostas.
Raising heritage  LF RC RIR's,  a couple of Marans and a few olive and easter eggers for a pretty egg basket.

Member of the APA and Rhode Island Red Club of  America.
See why worming is so important:
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?pid=7474233

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Living the good life with husband of 33 years, three grown, married children, 4 grandchildren.  And about 550 hostas.
Raising heritage  LF RC RIR's,  a couple of Marans and a few olive and easter eggers for a pretty egg basket.

Member of the APA and Rhode Island Red Club of  America.
See why worming is so important:
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?pid=7474233

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post #5 of 11

Insects/bugs are a great natural source of protein.

7 chickens, 3 cats, 2 dogs .... and a VERY DH. 
My mealworm farm http://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=59623-mealworm-fam-experiences

And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.   Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

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7 chickens, 3 cats, 2 dogs .... and a VERY DH. 
My mealworm farm http://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=59623-mealworm-fam-experiences

And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.   Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

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post #6 of 11

I switched feeds to a game bird feed 22% protein and offered free choice ground up egg shells when the girls free range it helped with the protein levels and I noticed that this last years molt went really well they got their feathers in and they looked great.

a very loving and patient  husband  4 kids 2 daughter 2 sons 2 granddaughters 6 dogs, 6 cats, 1 ferret,
3 bantams 2 Plymouth barred rock. 2  buffs 1 Red star sex links , 1 black star sex links, 2 Australops, 1 Very sweet bantam rooster. 2 barnyard mix hens                                           
the love child story. http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.ph...
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a very loving and patient  husband  4 kids 2 daughter 2 sons 2 granddaughters 6 dogs, 6 cats, 1 ferret,
3 bantams 2 Plymouth barred rock. 2  buffs 1 Red star sex links , 1 black star sex links, 2 Australops, 1 Very sweet bantam rooster. 2 barnyard mix hens                                           
the love child story. http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.ph...
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post #7 of 11

Why do you feel that your hens are protein deficient?

Husband, Father, Livestock Nutritionist, Farmer
 

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Husband, Father, Livestock Nutritionist, Farmer
 

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post #8 of 11

The only non-medicated chicken food I could get was game feed at 22% protein. I have kept the girls on this and added greens, fruit, yogurt and earthworms.

Adding lots of greens to their diet will drop the overall % protein quickly. IMO egg whites are a huge protein drain on a hen. She needs plenty of protein to put into that egg.

IF you can find fishmeal and alfalfa pellets in addition to the other suggestions already posted. You should be able to get soybean meal if you ask your feed dealer to get it; this is about 50 % protein; alf pellets about 25-30% protein and fish meal is all protein.

NPIP Tested Clean

 

             Bourbon Red and Sweetgrass Turkeys

 

             Black Copper Marans, Buff Orpingtons and Speckled Sussex    

  

 

Grow where you are planted. --Unknown

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NPIP Tested Clean

 

             Bourbon Red and Sweetgrass Turkeys

 

             Black Copper Marans, Buff Orpingtons and Speckled Sussex    

  

 

Grow where you are planted. --Unknown

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post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arielle 

Adding lots of greens to their diet will drop the overall % protein quickly. IMO egg whites are a huge protein drain on a hen. She needs plenty of protein to put into that egg.


I am also trying to up protein.. what does this mean about adding greens?  Do greens flush out protein somehow?  At the same time I am concerned about soft shell layers and have been giving extra spinach and cabbage to up calcium (somebody just wont eat the oyster shell).  Am nulling out the extra protein I am giving them by adding greens also??  ack!

 

“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”  ~ Buddha

 

My coop building thread... http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/613051/my-new-breeding-pens-progress-pics

Reply

 

“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”  ~ Buddha

 

My coop building thread... http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/613051/my-new-breeding-pens-progress-pics

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post #10 of 11

I use a 22% laying pellet.. I don't know if this is uncommon elsewhere or not. Here its about 25 cents more expensive. As for switching to a game bird feed, you need to be absolutely certain they have access to some form of calcium supplement. Most of my birds will eat oyster shells, but the ones that won't will not deny their own egg shells that I have crushed up for them...


Edited by CCourson05 - 5/8/11 at 11:29pm
Chris

GETTING BIG!!            &            Certified thread killer...
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Chris

GETTING BIG!!            &            Certified thread killer...
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