Chick food wasted

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Black Cochin Bantams, Jun 14, 2011.

  1. Black Cochin Bantams

    Black Cochin Bantams Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,860
    99
    198
    Feb 24, 2010
    Iowa
    I had noticed for quite a while that my chicks would flip food (crumbles) out onto the floor of brooders while searching for pieces of the size they wanted or could handle. I breed and raise bantams and the chick starter is a crumble that is not of uniform size. I experimented with an old hand food grinder.and found that if the crumbles were ground to a fine/uniform size that the chicks just ate it without picking through and wasting feed. I tried a food processor but too dusty. Another poultry breeder told me that they used an old coffee grinder. I still use my old food grinder and feel the finer feed has reduced feed use by over 1/3. Also have less to pick up when cleaning brooders. Now for the down side. Grinding too fast makes dust/mess. The finer feed bridges and doesn't flow well in the fruit jar type feeder. I have found it works best in a tray type feeder. Hope this helps or inspires someone else to use or improve on what I do.
     
  2. rivers2011

    rivers2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

    272
    1
    111
    May 12, 2011
    Port Perry, ON
    thanks! i noticed we were wasting way too much chick starter as well...but didn't think of grinding it! will have to try it in the future
     
  3. Johnboy78

    Johnboy78 Out Of The Brooder

    97
    0
    39
    May 16, 2011
    I did the same thing at 1-2 weeks.
    Pulsed it in the mini chop to give them a size selection.

    I found out why I was going through so much food when I
    replaced the pine shavings in the brooder at 3 weeks.
    Must have been 20 pounds of feed mixed in.

    8 chicks, 50 lbs of feed in 5 weeks.
    As a poultry farmer my efficiency would drive me to bankruptcy.
    That's not even counting my expenditures for crickets and waxworms
    at the petstore. $1.00 a dozen. Paying for bugs to give to chickens.
    If I were flushing dollar bills down the toilet they would last longer
    than a dozen crickets do in the brooder. I must be insane.
     
  4. JodyJo

    JodyJo Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,788
    26
    188
    Sep 27, 2010
    Colorado
    try mixing it with water...I have been doing this since mine came home, they love it still! You won't waste nearly as much either!
     
  5. Black Cochin Bantams

    Black Cochin Bantams Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,860
    99
    198
    Feb 24, 2010
    Iowa
    I have over 70 chicks from 1 week to 10 weeks old. While they are bantams I have not yet used 100 lbs of feed. That is much less than I used last year with less chicks. I start them on this until they go to the (grow out pen). At that point they get the chick starter crumbles (full sized)for another 2 months. Then to a 18% layer/broiler mix feed that Hubbard makes from then on.
     
  6. JodyJo

    JodyJo Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,788
    26
    188
    Sep 27, 2010
    Colorado
    Quote:I think I feed mine too much! LOL

    How often do you all feed your chicks, do the free feed all day long?
     
  7. quintinp

    quintinp Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,069
    12
    171
    Oct 22, 2010
    Southern Oklahoma
    i had someone get me some food as i couldn't at the time and they got hen scratch, so i had to grind up this hen scratch for my chicks, and they loved it, and yes if it is made into a paste by mixing water with it, the chicks go nuts for it
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by