Originally Posted by AnthNDacula
Sorry that I'm so dense but acronyms are my bane. What is IMO? And how do you like to feed your breeder birds?
Sorry, IMO = In My Opinion (so take it FWIW ... For What It's Worth ) Chicks get Dumor 24% protein chick starter for 4-6 weeks, depending on weather - I feed it longer for those hatched during the colder months. While they are still on the Starter, I begin to feed them some fermented wet scratch. I started my ferment liquid with a probiotics powder from the feed store a couple years ago, and have only needed to restart the original once, then added a second glass jar (2 gallon size). Once they are fully feathered, I shift them over to what I feed all birds as the base feed: 1/3 Mid-South Game Cock Maintenance, 1/3 Purina FlockRaiser, and a third fermented scratch. I do decrease the fermented scratch once the heat hits in the summer, but do not cut it out completely due to the moisture and lactobacilli. My birds also rotate out for "ranging" time in the electric enclosure to stretch their legs and wings, plus hunt up whatever insect, lizard, or small amphibian they can catch.
Apparently, even my layers look good on this, as when I set mine in the auction Saturday afternoon the first comment I heard was how healthy they look. The fellow who made the remark won three of the hens. I do know that I love to look out my window and see everyone not in molt shining in the sun.
I'll mention that hellbender has a specific "finishing" diet he feeds for either the last couple weeks or last month, plus being in a finishing pen, but I'll let him elaborate on that. I have not bothered to fully finish my birds, as I am pleased with the flavor they have on their regular diet.