goreybabe

In the Brooder
Jun 18, 2017
19
8
29
Hi everyone.
We have group of 3 Indian Runner drakes (6 months old) that free range in our backyard during the day. They forage a lot, but I also put out feed for them. The chickens eat their food as well. I was reading that it is okay for ducks to eat chicken feed if you supplement with Niacin for leg/bone development. (note: my guys are full grown, but I figure they still need the niacin.)

We feed our chickens with layer pellets (Poulin), and I was wondering if (a) supplementing with Brewers Yeast would be okay for the chickens or if it would be too much of certain nutrients for them and (b) if the fact that the ducks forage all day would cover the niacin issue?

Poulin lists the layer pellets as appropriate for adult ducks, but has a separate gamebird feed... which is what ducks fall under for most other brands of feed. Also, the analysis of the food doesn't list niacin, so I can't tell at all if the amount in the chicken feed is appropriate for ducks.

In the winter when there is less foraging, I'd definitely put out game bird feed for them. But for now, the chickens are eating way more of the duck food than the ducks. I hardly see the ducks eating their feed, in fact. They like to hang out by the compost and "flower garden" areas (better worms and bugs I guess).

Thanks in advance!!!
 
Last edited:

chickens really

Crazy Mother of Goat Kids
Premium Feather Member
Sep 8, 2015
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The Funny Farm....Alberta, Canada
Drakes do not need layer pellets and actually an all flock feed is Best...Plus keeping Drakes with Chickens is a recipe for disaster...When breeding season comes and the Drakes are raging hormones they will and can kill the Chickens if they breed them..Drakes have a Penis that is 4 inches and Roosters do not Have any penis...Time to build another pen for Ducks...
 

goreybabe

In the Brooder
Jun 18, 2017
19
8
29
Drakes do not need layer pellets and actually an all flock feed is Best...Plus keeping Drakes with Chickens is a recipe for disaster...When breeding season comes and the Drakes are raging hormones they will and can kill the Chickens if they breed them..Drakes have a Penis that is 4 inches and Roosters do not Have any penis...Time to build another pen for Ducks...
We already have three runs to separate out our two roos and/or newer chickens, and we have one just for the ducks since they have different winter needs than the chickens (plus are wet and messy!). Thanks though.
It's really just the feed that I'm asking about right now --- what is an all-flock feed? I've only seen layer (which we have) or finisher (for meat birds, which we don't have).
 

goreybabe

In the Brooder
Jun 18, 2017
19
8
29
Also Ducks have different requirement where feed is concerned...
Yes, hence my question.
The feed literature from Poulin, which is what we landed on for our chickens after a lot of research, says that larger game birds (turkeys, geese) should get the game feed, but ducks (I'm guessing as smaller birds) are listed for the adult chicken feed.
I'm trying to figure out if foraging is enough to make up the difference, or if supplements are viable in terms of both the chickens and the ducks health-needs. (I don't want to overdose the chickens on B vitamins, if that is possible.)
 

chickens really

Crazy Mother of Goat Kids
Premium Feather Member
Sep 8, 2015
62,585
108,767
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The Funny Farm....Alberta, Canada
Here is what I feed and others here I know..
First my Ducks feed:
Duck finisher, Oat and Barley crumble and classic scratch grains ..
Some I know here use Turkey finisher
Ducks Require balance as do Chickens..
As for Chickens I feed a grower feed all year long and supply oyster shell in a separate bowl...
 

CayugaJana

Free Ranging
Sep 2, 2017
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Here are some options I can think of:
-Yes, sprinkling brewers yeast on the feed would be fine. But not %100 sure layer feed is good for your fellas. Look at calcium content in feed and then research to make sure it’s at an ok level for your fellas (and that’s just assuming you haven’t already done that, you know what happens when we assume :lau)

-Feed the whole flock adult chicken feed with brewers yeast sprinkled in, and place another bowl of crushed calcium from the feed store for your birds that lay eggs (they instinctively will be attracted to it)

-Feed the whole flock adult chicken feed and place another bowl of crushed calcium from the feed store for your birds that lay eggs. Then add liquid poultry vitamins to their water.

-Or you could buy game bird feed for the ducks and chicken feed for the chickens. I know game bird feed isn’t available everywhere.(My game bird feed has a duck icon with various other birds indicating who it’s designed for)

Their foraging ability will really depend on your property and your seasons where you live. The more bugs they get, the more it will help make up for the difference in chicken feed. Hope that helps. And don’t hesitate to ask if you have more questions.:)
 

goreybabe

In the Brooder
Jun 18, 2017
19
8
29
Here is what I feed and others here I know..
First my Ducks feed:
Duck finisher, Oat and Barley crumble and classic scratch grains ..
Some I know here use Turkey finisher
Ducks Require balance as do Chickens..
As for Chickens I feed a grower feed all year long and supply oyster shell in a separate bowl...
Thanks! I'm off to research finisher feed now.... are the oat and barley crumble separate? (Got scratch already... I'll start sprinkling it around where the ducks hang out as well.)
 

chickens really

Crazy Mother of Goat Kids
Premium Feather Member
Sep 8, 2015
62,585
108,767
1,647
The Funny Farm....Alberta, Canada
Thanks! I'm off to research finisher feed now.... are the oat and barley crumble separate? (Got scratch already... I'll start sprinkling it around where the ducks hang out as well.)
No, I mix it 50% Finisher and then add oat and barley crumble and the scratch...I just scoop what I need daily into my pail...some days it might be 75% finisher?...still all healthy and happy...Ducks are easy...chickens more complex..
 

goreybabe

In the Brooder
Jun 18, 2017
19
8
29
Here are some options I can think of:
-Yes, sprinkling brewers yeast on the feed would be fine. But not %100 sure layer feed is good for your fellas. Look at calcium content in feed and then research to make sure it’s at an ok level for your fellas (and that’s just assuming you haven’t already done that, you know what happens when we assume :lau)

-Feed the whole flock adult chicken feed with brewers yeast sprinkled in, and place another bowl of crushed calcium from the feed store for your birds that lay eggs (they instinctively will be attracted to it)
I was worried about the calcium content when the feed store suggested the layer (we had them on grower/finisher up and are just about to run out. But the chickens devour most of it anyway. Hence, my thinking about switching to chicken feed.)

I like the idea of avoiding layer feed while the flocks mingle & forage. We offer crushed oyster and crushed egg shells for calcium anyway, so if we do this and add yeast to a non-layer adult (perhaps all-flock if I can find it) feed, and supplement the waterers, that could totally solve my problem and give both ducks and chickens what they need!

Thank you -- I hadn't even thought of the waterers.
 

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