Am I feeding correct.

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by haddiemoo, Dec 30, 2010.

  1. haddiemoo

    haddiemoo Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 25, 2010
    My hens have seemed to stop laying as it has gotten colder. Because of this I have not fed them as much laying pellets and have given them lots more table scraps/crackers/chips/snacks etc. I still throw out a little of the laying pellets and corn scratch feed. I am wondering if I am giving them a good enough diet? I do include vegtables such as greens with the table scraps. Does this seem o.k. or do I need to swithc to more of the processed chicken feed or is the human food ok? Thanks
     
  2. feathersnuggles

    feathersnuggles Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 4, 2009
    Seattle
    Hens need good balanced nutritious diets... even, and perhaps especially, when not laying. They build stores of nutrients in their bodies and out of any nutritional surplus they can produce eggs. It takes a lot of nutrition for laying hens to produce the number of eggs they do. In winter they need even more nutrient-dense foods, because they are also keeping warm. I would not remove their balanced layer feed, whether laying or not. I'd give them their layer feed, plus in winter some extra handfuls per week of cracked corn or black oil sunflower seeds (BOSS) for extra energy and protein, or mealworms if you have them. The fresh greens and weeds are fine. And for my own hens, I give them table scraps- if the scraps are high in protein - but they get almost NO snacks, crackers or chips because that stuff just dilutes a nutrient-dense diet.

    Hope that helps.
     
  3. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

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    I wouldn't remove their basic layer pellets. I like to always have feeders full of food for them regardless of how many treats I send their way. Some days they surprise me with how much they ate (especially when it is cold).

    They might survive on mainly treats, but their health possibly won't be what it could be.

    Some folks buy the higher protein feed (20%) and then offer some hen scratch on the side, so that their protein level won't fall too low.

    Layer feed is usually 16% protein.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2010

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