Feeding a mixed flock cracked corn

Plchickens

In the Brooder
Oct 17, 2021
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I have 14 chickens and 3 Pekin ducks. I have been mixing their mixed flock feed with cracked corn. But I have had some behavioral issues with two of my Easter eggers attacking one of my Pekin ducks recently and it occurred to me after reading a few articles that maybe I shouldn’t be doing that. Can anyone give me any advice?
 

Aunt Angus

Crossing the Road
Jul 16, 2018
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Can I ask why you're feeding corn? I have a mixed flock, and I just feed the usual feed without adding anything. And is corn supposed to affect their behavior, or is it that they are trying to keep your duck from getting the corn?

I'd think you could just try not feeding the corn and see if that changes anything. Otherwise, it sounds like you might have a bullying issue on your hands.
 

TheOddOneOut

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Corn is fatty and sweet. It's like throwing a slice of cake into a salad. There's no reason they should be having it every day or that it should make up more then 5% of their daily diet, at the most.
 

Plchickens

In the Brooder
Oct 17, 2021
13
12
28
Can I ask why you're feeding corn? I have a mixed flock, and I just feed the usual feed without adding anything. And is corn supposed to affect their behavior, or is it that they are trying to keep your duck from getting the corn?

I'd think you could just try not feeding the corn and see if that changes anything. Otherwise, it sounds like you might have a bullying issue on your hands.
That’s a really good question! I have no idea! My husband raised birds when he was a kid and we just started adding it I think to cut down the cost of feed but from what I read that may not be true. My Pekin had an eye infection last week that I discovered and I had noticed that she was being picked on by a couple of the chickens. So I pulled her out and treated her eye for 4-5 days. Tried to put her back in yesterday and they attacked her! They specifically went for the injured eye though which is so weird! I ended having to go in there and kick them off her and take my poor bloodied duck out again. I just can’t figure out why this is a problem now all of the sudden since they have been together this whole time with no issues.
 

Aunt Angus

Crossing the Road
Jul 16, 2018
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Nevada County, CA
That’s a really good question! I have no idea! My husband raised birds when he was a kid and we just started adding it I think to cut down the cost of feed but from what I read that may not be true. My Pekin had an eye infection last week that I discovered and I had noticed that she was being picked on by a couple of the chickens. So I pulled her out and treated her eye for 4-5 days. Tried to put her back in yesterday and they attacked her! They specifically went for the injured eye though which is so weird! I ended having to go in there and kick them off her and take my poor bloodied duck out again. I just can’t figure out why this is a problem now all of the sudden since they have been together this whole time with no issues.
Yeah, I'd cut out the corn. And I'd separate the bullies - or the worse of the offending EEs - once your ready to reintroduce your poor duckie. That'll knock the bully down a rung or two on the social ladder. If it persists, though, you might need to keep your duckies separate.
 

TheOddOneOut

Debonair 🙄🤚
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Feb 15, 2020
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That’s a really good question! I have no idea! My husband raised birds when he was a kid and we just started adding it I think to cut down the cost of feed but from what I read that may not be true. My Pekin had an eye infection last week that I discovered and I had noticed that she was being picked on by a couple of the chickens. So I pulled her out and treated her eye for 4-5 days. Tried to put her back in yesterday and they attacked her! They specifically went for the injured eye though which is so weird! I ended having to go in there and kick them off her and take my poor bloodied duck out again. I just can’t figure out why this is a problem now all of the sudden since they have been together this whole time with no issues.
It may be related to the corn, it may not. You said she has other duck friends, right? It's possible they need to just live in their own space.
 

U_Stormcrow

Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
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They are pack animals, and they tend to pick on the weakest member of the pack - currently, the injured duck. Reintegration shouldn't start till the wound is closed and the cause is addressed.

Personally, though I am largely inexperienced with poultry diseases, I doubt the corn has anything to do with it. That said, treats - of whatever sort - are a great way to encourage dietary imbalance in your flock. Corn is a low value feedstuck which also happens to be very inexpensive (relatively). Which is why its often the first ingredient in commercial feed (then every other ingredient is present to compensate for what corn lacks).

Recommend not doing it - you are stretching the meat and veggies by offering corn chips. Man can not live (well) on nachos alone, nor can your birds - particularly when those nachos skimp to meat minimum nutritional goals.
 

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