Chickens are dying since we got cows

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by eggsited chickens, Oct 13, 2011.

  1. eggsited chickens

    eggsited chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 15, 2009
    SW Michigan
    Is there something in Calf Grain that will kill chickens if they get too much? We've had 2 die in the past couple weeks, and another on her way out. She is having a hard time breathing almost like CRD.
  2. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

    May 8, 2007
    I don't know. Formulated feeds have vitamins and minerals added at certain levels for specific species. Sometimes the levels for one species is too much and toxic for another species. For example, when you get a salt and mineral mix for sheep, it has to be one that's specially formulated for them, as the levels for other species are too much.

    I've had other livestock, but not cattle. Hopefully someone else that's familiar with the ingredients and nutrient levels in calf grain will show up soon. I would think if that's the problem, it will be in the vitamin or mineral levels.
  3. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

    Sep 25, 2007
    Maybe you should check at our sister site, - there may be more folks who can address your question over there...?
  4. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Most of the time I had chickens, I've had cattle, without problems. I would check the cattle feed for molds. Mycotoxin is much more poisonous for chickens than cattle. Even if you don't see it you may consider discarding it and trying a new, different cattle grain.
    I've usually not used a lot of grain with my cattle, mainly just alfalfa hay and sometimes cattle cubes. If you feed the cubes the chickens wouldn't be able to eat them. Maybe consider that, instead?
  5. Erica

    Erica Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 5, 2010
    I reckon it's possible. There would be a calf coccidiostat in the feed, and while some calf coccidiostats are the same as in chicken feed, some aren't (and might not be tolerated). There might be other chemicals designed to suppress certain bacteria in the rumen (the microbial stomach) so the calf can cope with pellets, as well.

    I don't know if it is the feed, I'm just saying it sounds possible, and is worth looking up (if your feed bag has a detailed label). As a precaution I would also isolate all sick birds in case it's one of the contagious respiratory diseases.

  6. OwensMom

    OwensMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 4, 2009
    CO Western Slope
    I've bred horses and in the past there was a big scare when horses ate cattle feed. There used to be an additive called rumensine that was deadly for non-rumanents. If that is still in the feed then your chickens cannot tolerate it. If you need to feed grain use a horse sweetfeed. That is what I do. If the other animals get into it then it won't hurt them. Good luck
  7. TrystInn

    TrystInn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 16, 2009
    Southern Arizona
    Around here, when they move the cattle to a 2nd acre, they move the chickens into the first field.

    Perhaps consider having the extension office do a necropsy.
  8. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

    Feb 19, 2011
    Massachusetts, USA
    Quote:Also goes by Monensin. Not sure I have the spelling exactly right. THis is like an antibiotic that has been shown to increase weight gains more effeciently. May or maynot be suitable for poultry.

    The label on the bag MUST list the exact content of the ingredients. Can you list the ingredients?

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by