Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by flockmarket, Sep 17, 2011.

  1. flockmarket

    flockmarket Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 11, 2011
    so im trying to get away from commercial feeds. i'm thinking, duck weed, dried comfrey, goats milk, black soldier fly larvae, oats, sunflower seeds, and amaranth. do you think they could eat amaranth? i mean, i could cook it if neccesary, but i really want to have a grain i grow at home just in case the whole world runs out of grains one day for some crazy reason. but i would mix it with the oats and sunflower seeds, also how much could i feed to them at once?

    basically is it poisinous? can i cook it to make it safe?
  2. emys

    emys Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 19, 2008
    Here is a study on using amaranth as chicken feed.

    Seems impractical to me to always have to cook their food for them. If I were you I would look at other grains such as broom corn or the same millet found in bird seed (proso?) Let the bugs be your protein.
  3. extraordinaryfowl

    extraordinaryfowl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 6, 2011
    Lancaster, PA
    I would feed amaranth in their mash if I could, but it is expensive to buy and a pain in the neck to harvest, the seeds being so tiny with so much chaff. I've never heard of it being poisonous raw, did you read something that said that? The link above looks very informative. MW
  4. Mac in Wisco

    Mac in Wisco Antagonist

    May 25, 2007
    SW Wisconsin
    I've bought scratch mixes that had ameranth in them. I thought it was millet seeds until it started growing in the yard.

    That study refers to replacing corn with ameranth in high percentages. Some grains have anti-nutritional factors. Barley comes to mind. It generally not added in high amounts without a supplemental enzyme to make it more digestible.

    Ameranth is fine at smaller percentages in the diet, just don't try to make it the sole energy source in the diet.
  5. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2009
    the South
    I grow and feed Amaranth. The birds love it and it is a fairly good source of protein. Watch the goats milk; to much will really be bad for the birds.

    Your feed mixture sounds ok, but it utilizes some really non-traditional grains; thus, it is going to be hard to determine (research will be scarce and possibly one-source) how balanced you mixture really is.

    I would suggest instead a more traditional mixture with the ingredients you have listed as additions to that basic mixture: corn, oats, wheat, millo, alfalfa, etc.

    Also, you need to consider a vitamin supplement to your feed such as Red Cell. I don't see that your named ingredients are going to provide all the vitamins a minerals needed by the birds.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by