Do all feed mills have poultry feed? So confused!

5770amber

Chirping
Jul 21, 2015
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We are looking into finding a local feed mill and a quick google search showed some near by. I was wondering if all feed mills have what I need? Or are there specific mills for poultry? Please don't laugh at me
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I'm new to this!
 

ChickenCanoe

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Are you talking about a mill that makes their own feed or a grain elevator that carries feed manufactured by others.

If it is a mill that makes feed, it will depend on what customers they cater to. Some will and some won't but most keep chicken feed. Just call them.

Any mill with the hammermill, mixer and extraneous equipment should be able to make any kind of feed but they have to also carry the proper vitamin, mineral mixes and the synthetic amino acids to add to the primary ingredients like corn and soy.
They also have to have the right recipe for various ages of chickens - or any other animal for that matter.
 
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5770amber

Chirping
Jul 21, 2015
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I don't really know what I'm talking about, what to look for, or what to ask. I bring my ignorance here so I don't make a fool out of myself to the locals. We have about 40 hens and 40 chicks so I'm trying to find a way not to spend $15 on a 50lb of food. Any suggestions would be wonderful. Any grains we could mix with our feed or how do you make your own feed?
 

ChickenCanoe

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Most local mills have gotten out of the business of making chicken feed because they don't have enough customers to make sense of carrying all the supplements before they go bad. Many of the supplemental vitamins, minerals and amino acids the mills use are only available in 50lb bags. It takes a long time to use up 50 lbs. of methionine or vitamin D3.

Making your own feed has been discussed here many times.

I've run the numbers many times and unless you can free range on some pristine forage, there isn't a good way to provide the complete nutrition in a bag of chicken feed at the correct ratios for less than the bag costs.
We (small holders) buy grains by the bag and supplements by the pound. Manufacturers buy grains by the trainload and supplements by the ton. It is the economy of scale.

With 80 birds, it may be possible for you to get feed by the pallet which should be cheaper.
If you had more, you could get one of the local mills to make feed for you specially and they'll deliver it in bulk. You'll just have to ask. You would need some kind of hopper that holds a ton of feed for bulk. A pallet of bagged feed would be better.
 

5770amber

Chirping
Jul 21, 2015
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We do free range our birds. We only have a few acres but we are surrounded by fields on all four sides of our house that they wonder on. My in laws use to keep pigs years ago and have old storage bins we could use for feed.
 

5770amber

Chirping
Jul 21, 2015
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Tri county said they do make layer feed, chick starter, and chick grower. Now my next question is we keep our roosters separate from the hens and only use them for breeding. What is the best feed for them? I read layer feed has too much calcium and is bad for their kidneys ?
 

Macis Papa

In the Brooder
Nov 28, 2015
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If I were you I would feed the roosters the layer feed. For years my roosters ate the layer feed when they were in with the hens sometimes it was for a week or 2 sometimes it was for their entire life. I never noticed any problems. If they were in the Batchelor pad they would get 75% layer feed 25% cracked corn. I feed all flock now with oyster shell on the side. Is has a higher protein and I don't have to worry if the little chicks are eating it.
 

ChickenCanoe

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Tri county said they do make layer feed, chick starter, and chick grower. Now my next question is we keep our roosters separate from the hens and only use them for breeding. What is the best feed for them? I read layer feed has too much calcium and is bad for their kidneys ?
Many companies make a finisher feed about 15% protein and 1% calcium. That would be a good feed for roosters. There is also a 12% protein game bird maintenance feed that would work too. 13% protein is about right for roosters.
Excess calcium (4% ion layer feed) can cause visceral gout and excess protein can cause articular gout.
You can have them together by providing feeders for hens that the roosters can't get their heads into and rooster feeders too high that the hens can't eat from them.
If I were you I would feed the roosters the layer feed. For years my roosters ate the layer feed when they were in with the hens sometimes it was for a week or 2 sometimes it was for their entire life. I never noticed any problems. If they were in the Batchelor pad they would get 75% layer feed 25% cracked corn. I feed all flock now with oyster shell on the side. Is has a higher protein and I don't have to worry if the little chicks are eating it.

x2
Adding the corn cuts the protein enough and helps with the calcium.

There are studies that show sperm motility can be improved with up to 2.5% calcium.
However 4% (layer feed) is a problem.
 

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