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Anyone Else think feed is expensive? What do you do?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by ChickenCharmer, Oct 24, 2009.

  1. ChickenCharmer

    ChickenCharmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    I, for one, can't afford feed. My hens consume 100 lbs of feed (that's 50 lbs of layer, mixed with 50 lbs of scratch, to make it cheaper) in twenty days, including treats and kitchen scraps. That's right. The cost is 30 dollars every twenty days, and, especially since I'm a teenager and the only income I have is egg money, I simply can't afford it. What to do?

    Does anyone have problems with this? I thought of possibly buying feed wholesale; does anyone else do this? Where can I buy it?

    Thanks.
    Madelief
     
  2. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Perhaps you might have to consider downsizing your flock to a level that you can afford? Sorry, that's all I can think of.
     
  3. WalkingWolf

    WalkingWolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 1, 2009
    North Carolina
    LOL, I go through 100lbs of feed a week. You should not be giving a 50/50 mix with scratch, it really does not save you any money as the birds eat more with scratch. You should not be paying $15 for 50lbs of feed either, shop around. I pay $12 for starter, $10 for layer, and $8 for scratch.

    Check with your local store produce for scraps, if they do not have the dumpster posted you could dumpster dive. Plant some trees or bushes that produce berries, I plan on planting a strawberry patch for mine, I have persimmon trees that are dropping fruit and the birds are going nuts over it. I also planted mulberry trees but don't expect fruit for a couple years. Depending on your area there are certain weeds that produce fruit that is edible for chickens.

    I have 100 birds which includes 6 ducks, so I am only feeding 1lb of feed per bird per week. My birds free range, so they get most of their food from the ground. The only birds that consume more are my pure birds that are penned so they are on a strictly feed diet, but they get the scraps from the produce dept when we can get them.
     
  4. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    I had to downsize my flock, and will probably downsize it again in a few weeks.
     
  5. beckyschicks

    beckyschicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 22, 2009
    Iron Ridge WI
    WOW! I must not feed enough! I keep reading about how much everyone else feeds and I can't believe it! I buy 50lbs of chick starter ( I have 20 cochin chicks and 2 7month olds) every 2 months. I've also only bought 1 bag of scratch since I got them. They free range all day in the barn and also outside. They don't seem to be hungry or thin. They get about 2cups in the morning and that last them all day. The bowl sometimes isn't even empty by night. I also now that it's gotten cold give them a couple handfuls of scratch before they go to sleep. They do get scraps from the house but not everyday. And maybe during the winter months my output will go up. My husband says that I even feed them to much during the summer?! I don't think I do. My guys are little maybe thats the difference. Good luck!
     
  6. ScoobyRoo

    ScoobyRoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 21, 2008
    Land of OZ
    You think the chickens eat a lot,, I processed 6 turkeys in the last month and that made a huge difference! Turkeys consume a lot of feed! I agree with WW Don't use the scratch but sparingly. Do your flock get to free range? If so, Don't put out a lot of feed at one time. Make them hunt for their food. See if that helps. If they don't get to free range than sadly you may have to down size your flock.[​IMG]
     
  7. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    Jun 1, 2009
    Ohio
    I thought of possibly buying feed wholesale; does anyone else do this? Where can I buy it?

    Check your feed mills around you.. I know the mill I use a 22% protein Starter/Grower runs
    $11.00 a 50 lb bag - Scratch $12.00 a 50 lb bag
    (cracked corn, clipped oats, wheat, milo, BOSS)

    If buy your feed in bulk ( a skid at a time 1 ton ) they should give you some discount in price.

    beckyschicks :

    I full feed my chicks and I go through 50 lbs of Starter/Grower every 2 week per 25 chicks.

    Chris​
     
  8. Barred Babies

    Barred Babies Red Roof Farms

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    Sep 20, 2009
    Pride, La.
    WOW.... I've had my 3 hens & 1 rooster for 6 weeks now and I haven't even gone through a half of 50 lb of feed & scratch!! And their feeder is kept full all the time!! Now in 5 weeks my 15 babies have gone through almost 125 lb of feed.. But there was SO much waste involved in all of that!!

    Missi
     
  9. wombat

    wombat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 23, 2009
    Ask the produce manager at the local grocery to save you trimmings (carrot tops, etc.) and non-spoiled discards.

    Make arrangements to pick up on set days, and show up on the days you agree to. They'll likely be happy to save you things that would otherwise go t waste.

    If you have not done so, raise your feeders to "back height" so that they don't throw as much feed on the ground.

    If you've got more eggs than you can sell, consider cutting back on how many chickens you have.

    You also are probably feeding too much scratch. The "rule of thumb" is 10%-15% of total feed. You can up the scratch a bit in cold weather, but scratch beyond about 15% is "chicken junk food."
     
  10. blueseal

    blueseal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    WALDOBORO MAINE
    mine isnt that bad 10.50 for a 50 pound bag of blueseal layer mash. right now they are eating about 35 pounds of feed a week and i have 24 standards. they eat alot less in summer.
     

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