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Chick starter protein

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by LD Jackson, May 2, 2011.

  1. LD Jackson

    LD Jackson Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Black Australorp chicks will be arriving tomorrow and I am having trouble finding the kind of feed I think I need. The chick starter at my local feed store is only 16% protein and a man I work with, who raises chickens for his daughter and her 4H class, says I need at least 28%, especially with the bigger birds. If I am stuck with the lower protein feed, am I likely to have growth or health problems?
     
  2. GiddyMoon

    GiddyMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's called game feed starter..are you sure you can't find it? That is what I am going to use as well.
     
  3. LD Jackson

    LD Jackson Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:It will be Thursday before my feed man can have any. I may get some off the man at work until I can get some of my own. I do so want these birds to do well.
     
  4. Wildflower_VA

    Wildflower_VA Chillin' With My Peeps

    They need at least 20% protein starter. I wouldn't feed the 16% starter. Some feeds have very poor quality protein to begin with. You might have leg problems and feather picking problems if they don't get enough protein. I used 20% starter with my Australorps, plus I fed them "treats" of boiled eggs and high protein grains like quinoa and spelt to ensure quality protein. I only had six chicks to raise, so that was easy for me, but last I read you have 25 BAs. Mine are nine weeks old and are large and have glossy feathers, indicating they have sufficient protein in their diet.
     
  5. hunter109

    hunter109 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 22, 2011
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    i am using a 20 % protein feed called dhick go its pretty good stuff my chicks ant very old and they are big and feathering good i hope it will work out some for the new chicks i just got, well good luck guys well latter
     
  6. erlibrd

    erlibrd Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Is quinoa good to feed chicks, it has good protein but I heard it has a lot of calcium which chicks shouldn't have much of/?
     
  7. Wildflower_VA

    Wildflower_VA Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Even baby chickens need a certain amount of calcium in their diet for strong bones and other body processes. The statement that quinoa is high in calcium is in comparison of quinoa to other grains and seeds┬Śnot to oyster shell, which we give to laying hens. Oyster shell is 38% calcium.

    Quinoa is in the Goosefoot family which includes beets, chard, and spinach. Throughout the world there are about 250 species, many considered weeds, such as lambs quarters or pigweed, which chickens love to eat. Also, the baby chicks won't be eating any of these in a quantity that would give them a lot of calcium.

    All of these green, leafy vegetables and weeds are great forage for chickens. All are high in calcium when compared to other grains and seeds, but not as compared to oyster shell or limestone.

    Quinoa possesses larger quantities of calcium, fat, iron, phosphorus, and B vitamins than many other grains. One-half cup of cooked quinoa contains 15.5 mg of calcium, compared to 8.5 mg in the same quantity of cooked whole-wheat cereal. The protein content is a whopping 4.1g for that one-half cup of cooked quinoa. Potassium is impressively high with 159 mg. as is zinc with 1 mg. Other impressive figures include 1.38 mg of iron, and 59 mg. magnesium. In the category of fiber quinoa rates top scores with 2.6 grams for one-half cup cooked grain.

    Comfrey (30% protein) is one of the plants most recommended for growing for chicken forage. It is much higher in calcium than is quinoa. I am growing both quinoa and comfrey for my chickens this year.

    Comfrey, botanical name Symphytum officinale, is a powerful calcium-containing herb that provides human beings with 100% organic, digestible, absorbable, and assimilable calcium that the body can use unlike man-made versions of calcium which are synthetic and pharmaceutical-grade in nature.

    Comfrey (root and leaves) provides the richest and most abundant source of natural calcium available to man in plant form. There are quite a few herbs that provide natural calcium, i.e. Moringa, Alfalfa, Red Raspberry Leaf, Horsetail, and Oatstraw to name a few, but Comfrey is king!

    Read more: http://www.dherbs.com/articles/comfrey-poisonous-395.html#ixzz1LIryYyt6
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. erlibrd

    erlibrd Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Wildflower, thanks for all the information! I am already growing Comfrey and didn't know the chickens liked it... they aren't allowed on that portion of the property so I'll pick some for them when it comes up!
    Can the chicks have quinoa grain uncooked?
     
  9. Wildflower_VA

    Wildflower_VA Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:The chickens like comfrey after it is wilted, and won't usually eat it off the plant even if allowed to be where it grows. I just planted my roots this year, so today was the first time I cut some for them. After it was wilted and chopped, they gobbled it down. Until now the chickens have been getting almost all of my fresh spinach; now maybe I can have some, too. I am going to eat some of the comfrey in salads, as well.

    I never cooked quinoa for my chicks. When they were tiny (I started feeding when one week old), I did grind up the grain until they were taking in chick grit for a while. I would grind up some quinoa, spelt berries, flax, sunflower kernels and sesame seeds and keep it in a ziplock bag in the fridge. I didn't give them a lot, but enough to make sure they were getting quality protein from different sources along with their boiled eggs. After they were older, I just sprinkled a little over their 'treat' of boiled eggs, chopped spinach and grated carrots.

    My mentor is Pat Foreman (I am a member of her poultry club), author of City Chicks, Chicken Tractor, etc., and I followed her advice about feeding these things, and she suggested cooking the veggies and grains at first, but my chicks never liked their treats until I stopped cooking them at all. The first few times I cooked their carrots, broccoli or spinach, whatever, and smashed up their boiled egg, they essentially said YUCK and walked in it. I would leave it until it was full of dirt, poop and aspen chips, then take it out and throw it away. I know some people cook oatmeal for chicks, but mine won't touch it gooey. The first time I gave them their egg chopped large, gave them finely shredded raw carrot and spinach, with the grains and seeds sprinkled on top, they went wild and cleaned it all up in less than five minutes. Most food has more nutrition if it is not heated, so I am just as glad that they like their veggies raw.
     
  10. jenkassai

    jenkassai Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 28, 2011
    When giving the treats such as boiled egg, how often do you give those? I will be getting 6 chicks, two of which are Jersey Giants, the rest are Wyandottes. Will they all do okay on a 20% protein starter? I really like the idea of supplementing with the treats, but wasn't sure how much / often to "treat" them.

    Thank you for the info!
     

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