Hello all. I read here often but have not posted much if at all. So I will jump in today. Why not. lol
I really enjoyed reading this thread. Not only inspired me with some great ideas but blessed me reading how much you all care for your chickens. Enjoy how you put out the extra effort to make your chickens happy. I especially appreciate the variety of healthy ideas. I had not thought to grow flats of greens as mine are in a tractor which my husband moves once a week on our small pasture. But I really love the idea of growing Omega-3 chicken forage. Will look into finding out about purchasing seeds. We have a small greenhouse so I am envisioning a year around crop. I like the idea of flats mounted on the side of wire run to avoid them stomping & pooing on the greens.
Presently I only have 2 adult hens (Barr Rocks) so of course I do things on a mini scale. Often I gather spinach, chard and carrot tops, etc. from our organic garden and place them in a large size wire bird feeder. I can attach it to the wire run with a tiny bungee cord. This keeps their greens clean and they enjoy pecking them out. If I throw these greens on the ground they do not eat them. They just stomp on them and poo on them. I actually got this idea reading last year here at BYC. So thank you for it along with the idea of attaching a cabbage to the wire run for them to peck.
One of the favorite garden grown veggies for my hens is zucchini. I strap it on the side of their wire run and they peck away like crazy. Also I grow meal worms for them but can sprinkle them about as they quickly consume these. During August when the locust are abundant around here our grandsons love to catch them with a net and throw these in the run for the hens. They do go crazy over them.
My husband often shovels up large dandelions for them. The dirt is usually full of earthworms and grubs, etc. so they are so happy scratching through looking for goodies. The dandelion greens are very healthy for them. We avoid spraying pesticides, etc. Trying to keep our small acreage as healthy as possible for us and our pets.