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Anyone else mix their own feed?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by spookyevilone, Jan 12, 2009.

  1. spookyevilone

    spookyevilone Crazy Quail Lady

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    Oct 5, 2008
    Minneapolis
    Anyone else mix their own feed? I started because I was unable to find organic feed when I first got my birds. I bought a bag of Sprout Game Bird Crumbles from a farm store, but .. well, I'm scared of the words "animal and poultry by-product".

    Here's my recipe - it's for quail, so it's rather heavy on the protein.
    3 parts corn (21%)
    2 part dried mixed peas and fava beans (50% pea 54% bean)
    2 parts bulgur wheat (26%)
    2 part barley (26%)
    2 part quinoa (30%)
    2 part oat groats (30%)
    1 part flax seeds (12%)
    1/2 part acorns (3%)
    1/2 part black sunflower seeds (6%)
    1/2 part safflower seeds (5%)
    1/2 part niger seeds (8%)
    In the winter, sprouted wheatgrass every other day. (not ground up) (27% per fluid ounce)

    Without the wheatgrass, the average is about 25% protein, with the wheatgrass, it goes up to 27%. The average for Coturnix is 24%, but since mine are indoors and lay all year round, I bump it a bit.

    I chuck it into the food processor and grind it up. I also dump in amaranth flour or rice flour or whatever other "expired" flour I have in the house. (If it's been open and not used up within a month, it goes in either the bird food or the worm food.) I add oyster shell to the ground up food and shake it up, to provide grit and calcium. I tried putting that in the food processor but bunged up the blades good and proper, so now it goes in whole.

    I also found out that "expired" flour in a cut down ice cream bucket makes a lovely dust bath for the quail. I put it in with mealworms hidden in it as enrichment for them and they decided to roll in it. [​IMG]

    -Spooky
     
  2. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady Premium Member

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    Apr 22, 2008
    upstate SC
    I have been mixing my own feed for about a year now. It's for chickens and not as extensive as your recipe but the girls lay great and the roos are doing their jobs so I must be doing it right.
    I don't like commercial products for the most part, especially not foods so I try to mix a more natural diet for all our animals and us.

    There is a lot that my chickens won't eat, like the barley or dry oats. I soak the oats in water and ACV and they gobble those up very well now. I have tried peaas but they don't like them, even soaked. I think I have one bird out of the 130+ that we have that will eat the peas. They don't like the niger seeds either. I have those at the bird feeder and they won't even taste them but will sample the other bird foods like peanuts and millet. I am big on the flax and they adore it. And the BOSS is a hit here. I just pour a whole bag out on the ground in different paddocks for the wild birds as well as the chickens. A 25# bag is gone in a few days between the animals that love it.
    My chickens free range and get a lot more than just what I offer. DH is constantly turning over clumps of soil for them to get worms and grubs.
     
  3. mr.majestik

    mr.majestik Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 9, 2008
    GA
    Quote:Where do you get all these items? I would like to feed mine like that but it must cost a fortune.
     
  4. spookyevilone

    spookyevilone Crazy Quail Lady

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    Oct 5, 2008
    Minneapolis
    mr.majestik :

    Where do you get all these items? I would like to feed mine like that but it must cost a fortune.

    I can get most of it bulk in the wild bird or horse section of my local farm store. A few times, I've had to go to the co-op or feed mill. I keep an eye out at WalMart in their wild bird section, quite frequently they'll have BOSS and/or Niger Seeds on sale dirt cheap.

    I have relatively few birds, so for me, it's not that expensive. Mostly it's time consuming because I don't have a KitchenAid with a grain mill so I have to do small batches in the food processor.

    The last time I averaged it out, it was running me about $1/lb, which is about twice what a commercial feed costs, but a 25lb bag of feed will last me a loooong time. It's worth it to know what I'm feeding my birds.
    -Spooky​
     
  5. Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay

    Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay Chillin' With My Peeps

    What are you using for Vitamin and tracemineral supplementation?
     
  6. spookyevilone

    spookyevilone Crazy Quail Lady

    701
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    141
    Oct 5, 2008
    Minneapolis
    Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay :

    What are you using for Vitamin and tracemineral supplementation?

    Sprouted wheatgrass, mealworms superfatted with vitamin fortified baby cereal, and veggie table scraps.
    -Spooky​
     
  7. La Banan

    La Banan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 28, 2008
    Hey all - think this is a good site for recipes for putting your own feed together: http://www.greenerpasturesfarm.com/ChickenFeedRecipe.html

    I
    will try it in the spring - right now just giving them the most organic feed I can find - we have stronger rules about what can be called organic here in Canada so I just trust the farmers I know to tell me what would be called organic if the rules weren't so tight.
     

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