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FEED CONSUMPTION

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by J ALLEN, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. J ALLEN

    J ALLEN Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 30, 2012
    What is the standard rule, if there is one, on how much feed to give? I have 4 roosters and 6 hens that I feed 50 lbs a week. Doesn't this sound like too much? I love raising and getting the fresh eggs from these chickens but this is not cost effective. Any suggestions appreciated.
     
  2. countrygoddess

    countrygoddess Chillin' With My Peeps

    That's really a lot of feed for them to be going through. I've done loads and loads of research on chicken nutrition/requirements and most sources say that chickens eat just shy of 1/4#, or about 100g, per day. They need about 400 kilocalories per day. If they're not getting that in 100g of feed then they'll eat more. My guess is that your feed isn't giving them what they need. What brand are you feeding them? Are they able to forage to supplement their diets with greens/bugs?

    50# should be lasting you about 20 days.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2013
  3. J ALLEN

    J ALLEN Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 30, 2012
    I'm feeding a brand made byWare Milling I think that's made here in Mississippi or a state nearby.But when I feed I just fill the feeder half to three quarters full. Should I feed a top feed like Purina and feed according to what you recommended? The reason I don't use Purina is a difference of $6.00 per 50 lbs. But if it's better and can save me money in long run I'll try it. Also, do chickens eat if their bored or is that just lore? They don't free range but are kept in yard. Thanks again for your help.
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Be sure they aren't wasting the feed or your aren't losing feed to mice, especially at night. Squirrels and rodents likewise.

    Side question, why four roosters?
     
  5. J ALLEN

    J ALLEN Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 30, 2012
    Thanks for your reply, we do have a bumper crop of squirrels this year. I haven't noticed any sign of mice. As for having four roosters, I had planned to put 3 in freezer but got busy and haven't had the time to finish the job. Thanks for your help.
     
  6. countrygoddess

    countrygoddess Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've never read anything about chickens eating out of boredom. I really doubt they would. And you would have to have a LOT of squirrels to be losing that much food in a week. I have 40 16-wk old pullets and cockerels and they go through 50# in 5 days, give or take.



    I looked at the Ware Milling website. Which feed are you using? Looks like the only grower has an antibiotic which is supposed to increase feed efficiency. And the ingredients are sketchy--they must change from batch to batch because all it says is "Grain Products, Plant Protein Products, Grain By-products", which could be any number of things. But to me it seems that there isn't enough variety in this feed. You might consider switching to something else with more variety in grains/seeds. And if the feed you get doesn't contain an animal protein (it probably won't as most mills are catering to people's irrational fears of contracting mad cow or something from their chicken meat and eggs), then add animal protein to their diet. Buy a bag of fish meal at your local feed store and give them a small handful every day. Throw them some freeze-dried mealworms each day. And offer them greens: pick dandelion greens from your yard (no chemicals on the lawn if you're going to do this!) and throw them in to the birds. Give them your fresh fruit and veggie scraps (check online for items they can't have, such as onions).




    Hope this helps!
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2013
  7. jumpingcactus

    jumpingcactus New Egg

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    Apr 5, 2009
    Casa Grande, AZ
    I just sat down and did chicken math today. I have 8 hens (hopefully) and just went thru a 50 lb bag in almost exactly a month. My feeder is a a homemade contraption made from a small trash can with a lid attached to a drip pan. I can dump almost the entire 50 lb bag in there when I first bring it home. So they get to eat to their desire and I don't have to feed them twice daily now.
     
  8. scrambled freud

    scrambled freud Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 30, 2013
    Lebanon Ohio
    ok, this is off-topic, but i would sure like to see the picture of the coop made from a small trash can!
     
  9. countrygoddess

    countrygoddess Chillin' With My Peeps

    That's about right. 8 x .22# (which is the conversion from 100g) = 1.76#/day. 50/1.76 = 28.41 days to consume a 50# bag. If they're young enough that you don't know the sex yet, then they're probably eating a bit less, which would put you at ~30-31 days.
     
  10. countrygoddess

    countrygoddess Chillin' With My Peeps

    That would be interesting. However, I believe jumpingcactus said it was a feeder made from a small trash can. =)
     

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