Farmer's Helper use

Loupup98

Chirping
Sep 26, 2018
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I have been adding Farmer's Helper Ultra Chick Kibble to my organic crumbles since I got them. Since I have a mix of laying chicks, I have decided to go with a 8:1 ration of crumbles to kibble.
I have 17 chicks and they are 7wks old. I free feed them and they seem to go through around 8 cups of mix a day.
I read on the post by Farmer's Helper that the kibble should be fed in combination with scratch to be most cost effective. Is this recommended for just adult layers? And, should I be limiting the amount of feed with my chicks since I am using this supplement to see the cost effectiveness or keep doing what I have been since they are not adults and free ranging? I really like the product and hope that by adding it, I am making a wise choice for the health of my flock:)!
Any advise or information, positive or negative is welcome as I am new and just trying to learn what is right and make the best choices for my girls!
 

ChickenCanoe

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Never mind, I just looked it up. It is almost 30% protein. Way too high for chickens. That's why they recommend feeding with scratch to cut the protein significantly.
What is the protein % of your chicken starter feed? I would think it is 18%. It's rare to find an organic feed over 18.
 

ChickenCanoe

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An 8:1 ratio will yield about 19.5% protein. Even though lots of people like to feed a high protein feed, I think that is unnecessarily high for 7 week old chicks.
12 parts kibble to 8 parts scratch will give you about 18% protein.
In spite of the high crude protein %, the lysine content is pretty low- about half what is normally in an all flock feed.

While there is nothing wrong with the feed (as long as you cut the protein with scratch), IMO I think it may be a fairly expensive way to feed chicks.
Sometimes we go over and above what is needed for the birds but it is your money.
If you do start adding scratch, make sure you also offer grit in a separate container. Make it adult grit. At 7 weeks they are too big for chick grit to aid in grinding food.
 
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Loupup98

Chirping
Sep 26, 2018
38
41
59
Never mind, I just looked it up. It is almost 30% protein. Way too high for chickens. That's why they recommend feeding with scratch to cut the protein significantly.
What is the protein % of your chicken starter feed? I would think it is 18%. It's rare to find an organic feed over 18.
Yep, I believe 18%. The kibble is high but that is why it is mixed at such a high ratio.
 

Loupup98

Chirping
Sep 26, 2018
38
41
59
An 8:1 ratio will yield about 19.5% protein. Even though lots of people like to feed a high protein feed, I think that is unnecessarily high for 7 week old chicks.
12 parts kibble to 8 parts scratch will give you about 18% protein.
In spite of the high crude protein %, the lysine content is pretty low- about half what is normally in an all flock feed.

While there is nothing wrong with the feed (as long as you cut the protein with scratch), IMO I think it may be a fairly expensive way to feed chicks.
Sometimes we go over and above what is needed for the birds but it is your money.
If you do start adding scratch, make sure you also offer grit in a separate container. Make it adult grit. At 7 weeks they are too big for chick grit to aid in grinding food.
Thanks for the info! Since I only use 1/2 - 1 cup of the kibbles per day, a 2.25 lb bag lasts me a couple of weeks and its only abt $6 a bag. If I mix it with scratch, that would save me alot on feed (they are on chick grower thats abt 25 bucks for 40lbs). Was hoping the kibble would cover the bases so i wouldnt have to purchase starter or grower anymore;). Also, thanks for the tip on grit, they have free access to chick grit right now and i dont feed them much else other than the feed mix so I was wondering when they could graduate to adult grit and start giving them my produce scraps!
 

ChickenCanoe

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Chick grit is only of sufficient size to lodge in the gizzard and be of benefit till about 3 weeks of age. By 7 weeks #3 size adult grit should be provided.
Is the kibble organic?
It may depend on where you buy feed and what it costs. Scratch isn't free. It costs me within a couple dollars a #50 bag for scratch as it does for the same amount of feed.
 

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