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Fermenting Feed for Meat Birds - Page 67

post #661 of 16426

Thanks everyone!  ChestnutRidge - that is VERY helpful to hear of someone who ferments a feed with the Nutribalancer and Kelp!  

 

Achickenwrangler#1 - I would love to do a comparison trial like you mentioned, but we would have to tweak our setup to make it fair.  Currently our brooder boxes in the garage are just made of plywood and divided in the middle into 2 - 8x8 boxes.  When we get the new chicks, we divide them half & half into each side, but in the 3rd week before they go out to the tractors, they easily jump up to the middle barrier (which is a bit shorter than the sides) and change sides at will.  When we take them out to the tractors, we again divide them evenly between the two tractors.  We have been talking about raising the middle barrier in the brooder boxes anyway, and it would be mandatory if we were to do a comparison test like you mentioned.  We have a new batch of chicks coming the week of July 16th, so if I get comfortable with making the fermented feed before then, I may see if we can give it a try.   If we do, I will definitely post results on BYC!

 

Galanie - I am definitely more inclined to try the free-choice supplements with our laying hens, and I will let you know if I do!

Three Breeding coops in 2014 - Buff Orpington Rooster & Buff & White Orpingtons, Easter Eggers, Black Australorps, Partridge Rocks, & a few mixtures.  Blue Barred Rock Rooster & Blue & Barred Rocks.  Black Copper Maran Rooster & Blue Copper Marans, & Blue & Splash EE's.  Bantam Flock of 6 hens & 1 rooster.

 

*~Homemade Soy-Free Feed~*    * Fermented Feed*   ***Darkling High-Rise...

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Three Breeding coops in 2014 - Buff Orpington Rooster & Buff & White Orpingtons, Easter Eggers, Black Australorps, Partridge Rocks, & a few mixtures.  Blue Barred Rock Rooster & Blue & Barred Rocks.  Black Copper Maran Rooster & Blue Copper Marans, & Blue & Splash EE's.  Bantam Flock of 6 hens & 1 rooster.

 

*~Homemade Soy-Free Feed~*    * Fermented Feed*   ***Darkling High-Rise...

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post #662 of 16426
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zootopia View Post

OH, IHOUSESOCCER, That gave DH and I a laugh !! I can just see it now!

  I have 2 buckets going one with Gamebirg starter and Scratch grains (for thr 3wk+ kids) and one with Dumor starter (because of the Ducks for the babies) I just keep mine at an oatmeal consistancy, I don't use 2 buckets so no need to drain, and when the bucket gets down to about 1/4 I fill it again. I do cheat and sprinkle in about 1/2 tsp of yeast along with the Braggs when I mix it up. I have a 3rd bucket of Scratch grains that I do every couple days as a treat for the big kids, some love it some don't. I pour the water off and use it for the babies buckets,since I don't keep a grain bucket all the time. (Like I should. I guess as these guys who are raised on it and love it. I'll have to.)

I do this too. In the morning the feed is all swollen up but is like peanut butter or oatmeal on the top layer with the watery layer beneath it. There is usally a layer of the "mother" sitting on the top as well.  I just scoop off 3/4's of the dryish stuff and feed them that. Then I stir up what was left behind so that it all gets mixed in nicely and then I add my fresh dry stuff and more water. By night feed it has swollen back up to size and I do it all over again.  I throw in a glug of ACV every few days or so but I'm not sure if I even need to do that.   This is working really well for me and skips the whole straining rigmarole which was getting pretty messy ha ha.  My chicks prefer a feed that is a bit less liquidy.  They are well into their third week and are starting to ramp up the feeding demands ha ha.

 

It's been really cold and windy here lately so they have to wait until the end of the week to go outside.  They had an adventure yesterday which scared the pants off of me.  During one of our huge wind gusts I guess their door blew open, let almost all of them out and then slammed shut again.  On our way to dinner last night I just popped in to feed them and found only seven of them left and the door closed tightly!  My first irrational thought was that someone had stolen them ha ha and then I began to hear the faint sound of peeping coming from all around me.  Their coop is right beside some  dense brush and brambles so it would have been very entertaining to watch us scrambling to get them, calling their names and carrying trays of FF all over hill and dale. Luckily over half came back when I called them with their food but the others took some more convincing.  It was the tiniest one who decided to crouch down in some thick brush under a log and make me work really hard to catch him ha ha. But in the end we persevered and all 26 are safe and sound with no ill effects.  


Edited by kelpieschick - 6/18/12 at 10:21am
post #663 of 16426

I just started fermenting my feed a few days ago. I used red wine vinegar with Mother, and added water. The feed I'm using is corn and soy free, organic, lots of different grains and what not in it. Before I fermented I was just feeding this dry obviously. In the past three days, I have seen a noticeable change in a few areas, 1. Better looking poop, more competent, firm and healthy looking, far less watery as before. 2. Water consumption has dropped like a stone. 3 Poop smell has dramatically decreased as well, I've been using a deep liter method so it's never been bad but now it's virtually gone. I'm doing all this in the middle of a city so smell has to be monitored closely. 4. They eat it with far more vigor than the dry feed. I've essentially used the same method beekissed described in the beginning of this thread. I tied a rope to the ceiling in the garage, and used a heavy bungee cord to suspend the FF over the liquid bucket to allow it to drain for a half an hour while I take care of other chores. In that time the feed has drained well and is not super soggy, and is easily scooped into the feeders. I honestly believe that they like this more and are happier birds, They also get fresh grass everyday. The one bad thing however is that the hanging feeders I use don't work well with the FF, as it doesn't drop down like the dry stuff would, any one have other methods that is hanging or some how makes it difficult  for the birds to mess it up?  Thanks!
 

1 Chesapeake Bay retriever, 2 Barred Rocks-Pheona and Pheobe, 2 Easter Eggers/Ameracaunas- Thelma and Louise and 8 more that are a mix of RIR and Golden Buffs I think and I haven't named them all yet.

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1 Chesapeake Bay retriever, 2 Barred Rocks-Pheona and Pheobe, 2 Easter Eggers/Ameracaunas- Thelma and Louise and 8 more that are a mix of RIR and Golden Buffs I think and I haven't named them all yet.

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post #664 of 16426

Love following this thread. I started feeding my laying hens fermented whole grains (and they free range already) about a month ago, and actually saw and increase in laying rate.  That was all great until FIVE, yes five of them decided to go broody within days of each other!  One is sitting on a mix of eggs that the girls layed, and the others are on nothing or golf balls.  Two of the broodys are silkies and the others are full size Faverolles.  We've been talking about trying meaties for a while, and this seems like a perfect opportunity.  Putting in my order tonight to Welp for 25 cornish X to split between two of the Faverolles girls.  The chicks will get fermented chick starter first, then the same fermented oats and wheat as the big girls.  I'm a bit nervous, but I think it will definitely be worth it in the end.

post #665 of 16426

Ok, I couldn't wait to try fermenting feed, so I just started two small buckets tonight with a small amount of our layer feed and laying chick grower feed.  I covered them with water and added a splash/small glug of Braggs ACV, stirred well, and covered the buckets with a scrap of black row fabric leftover from our garden.  I can't wait to try them on our laying chicks and my banties!  

 

Question -  What about using Kombucha instead of Vinegar for a starter?  It is very similar (a fermented probiotic drink made from using a "mother" to ferment regular black or green tea with sugar to feed it), and we make our own, so I always have some available.

 

Second question - with our laying flock, we give them our homemade laying mash, and then a small amount of whole grain scratch,(Cracked and whole corn, wheat, and Black Oil Sunflower seeds), which they LOVE!  Should I try and ferment the scratch too, or just leave it dry?

Three Breeding coops in 2014 - Buff Orpington Rooster & Buff & White Orpingtons, Easter Eggers, Black Australorps, Partridge Rocks, & a few mixtures.  Blue Barred Rock Rooster & Blue & Barred Rocks.  Black Copper Maran Rooster & Blue Copper Marans, & Blue & Splash EE's.  Bantam Flock of 6 hens & 1 rooster.

 

*~Homemade Soy-Free Feed~*    * Fermented Feed*   ***Darkling High-Rise...

Reply

Three Breeding coops in 2014 - Buff Orpington Rooster & Buff & White Orpingtons, Easter Eggers, Black Australorps, Partridge Rocks, & a few mixtures.  Blue Barred Rock Rooster & Blue & Barred Rocks.  Black Copper Maran Rooster & Blue Copper Marans, & Blue & Splash EE's.  Bantam Flock of 6 hens & 1 rooster.

 

*~Homemade Soy-Free Feed~*    * Fermented Feed*   ***Darkling High-Rise...

Reply
post #666 of 16426
I ferment my grain scratch, it plumps up the grains and makes them look, and taste,:-) more palatable...and no dust!
post #667 of 16426
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoyfulPromise View Post

Ok, I couldn't wait to try fermenting feed, so I just started two small buckets tonight with a small amount of our layer feed and laying chick grower feed.  I covered them with water and added a splash/small glug of Braggs ACV, stirred well, and covered the buckets with a scrap of black row fabric leftover from our garden.  I can't wait to try them on our laying chicks and my banties!  

Question -  What about using Kombucha instead of Vinegar for a starter?  It is very similar (a fermented probiotic drink made from using a "mother" to ferment regular black or green tea with sugar to feed it), and we make our own, so I always have some available.

Second question - with our laying flock, we give them our homemade laying mash, and then a small amount of whole grain scratch,(Cracked and whole corn, wheat, and Black Oil Sunflower seeds), which they LOVE!  Should I try and ferment the scratch too, or just leave it dry?
I'd think the kombucha should work if it's the stuff that is nearly gone to vinegar. And absolutely do the scratch too.

Lay down with dogs and you get up with fleas.


Love those Orps!

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Lay down with dogs and you get up with fleas.


Love those Orps!

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post #668 of 16426

Ok, so here's a quick update - I gave some of the fermented Chick Grower feed to our laying chicks last night and they LOVED it! smile.png  I scooped some out on two white plastic 8 inch bucket tops and put it on the ground and they swarmed over it and devoured it greedily! yesss.gif   I hope to switch them over to all FF as soon as I figure out a soaking schedule and bucket setup.  I will need to make a PVC trough feeder or something for them since their current feeder is an old metal chick  trough with a wood bar across the top - we got it at an old barn sale - and it would be way too hard to get the FF in or out of. 

 

I gave some of the fermented laying feed to my banties this morning, and they seemed to eat it with no problem too.  Now to just figure out a setup to ferment enough feed for our main laying flock.   

I got a gallon of regular ACV at the store today -  how much of the Braggs ACV should I add to it to culture it?

 

I really like how the FF looks and feels in my small test batches!  I can't wait to get some going for all of our chickens!

Three Breeding coops in 2014 - Buff Orpington Rooster & Buff & White Orpingtons, Easter Eggers, Black Australorps, Partridge Rocks, & a few mixtures.  Blue Barred Rock Rooster & Blue & Barred Rocks.  Black Copper Maran Rooster & Blue Copper Marans, & Blue & Splash EE's.  Bantam Flock of 6 hens & 1 rooster.

 

*~Homemade Soy-Free Feed~*    * Fermented Feed*   ***Darkling High-Rise...

Reply

Three Breeding coops in 2014 - Buff Orpington Rooster & Buff & White Orpingtons, Easter Eggers, Black Australorps, Partridge Rocks, & a few mixtures.  Blue Barred Rock Rooster & Blue & Barred Rocks.  Black Copper Maran Rooster & Blue Copper Marans, & Blue & Splash EE's.  Bantam Flock of 6 hens & 1 rooster.

 

*~Homemade Soy-Free Feed~*    * Fermented Feed*   ***Darkling High-Rise...

Reply
post #669 of 16426
They sure do love it don't they! As to amount, you can guess, a few "glugs" is what beekissed used , I used two glugs for my small set up, you can always dilute it too...it's not an exact science I suppose, which is another thing to like, and it's pretty forgiving.
post #670 of 16426
awesome thread
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