Originally Posted by CrazedCowgirl
Sorry if my questions have already been answered but I'd like some further info and help when it comes to fermented feeds.
I currently have 5 laying hens and 12 new chicks. Currently hens are on layer pellets and chick are on chick crumbles. I'd love to start giving everyone fermented feed but I've seen and heard mixed "reviews" on it. I still have a few questions that I haven't gotten clear answers on.
1) Can I feed chicks (less then a week old) fermented feed?
2) Do you have to use special feeders or can I just add it into their gravity feeder they have now.
3) Can I make fermented feed out of store bought chick starter or layer pellets or is it best to make it out of plain grains?
I've received some pretty harsh feedback from other chicken people when I mention fermented feeds and it sounds like everyone here has some great knowledge to share!
Sorry you've been blasted in the past. Not very nice people! Unfortunately, folks who speak the most negatively about it are the ones who've never tried it.
1. Yes, you can feed chicks FF. What I like to do is start them with crumble on the floor of the brooder, and perhaps a little feeder full of crumble. I do this simply b/c hatchlings need that experience of picking at little bits that they see here and there. Once they are eating, I put out some FF. Again, I like to put it on the floor, perhaps a little plop of it on a piece of cardboard, or a paper plate, or a jar lid. I make it kind of stiff, and make sure there's not enough of it so that if they do a face plant in it, they won't suffocate themselves. They should take right to it well.
2. After they are eating well, I simply stop offering dry feed. Always be sure it's in a container that they can't get mired down in, or trampled into. Your gravity feeder won't work. But, I sometimes use the little plastic feeder that is designed for a qt. jar to screw onto to put the FF in, and leave the qt. jar off.
3. You can use your chick starter. Don't give them fermented layer. When I have chicks, I simply put the entire flock on starter. I never buy medicated feed. If you're using medicated chick crumble, you may not want to let your layers have that.
I've been using FF for about 4 years now, and can tell you that my birds lay sooner, lay more and are better looking than the birds of my friends and neighbors who have gotten their birds from same location at the same time (often, I've provided them with chicks from my flock). These folks buy their feed at the same feed stores. Only difference is that my girls get FF. (and sprouts in the winter).