Feeding your flock amidst of feed shortages

Ponypoor

Songster
May 23, 2021
398
720
148
Central Ontario, Canada
what feed shortage??
Yes I was wondering also, but might be a supply chain thing in some locales. Here we have no shortages of anything, (including rain hahaha).

Of course here we have grain aplenty, and most feed is produced locally (or provincially I should say) even the big brand names are produced locally. Prices r up a bit, but I expect that to increase due to fuel price increases.

I find it hilarious I live in an oil rich nation and pay a fortune for fuel... 😤
 
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GrandmaDeKorte

Grandmas Coop
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 8, 2014
4,887
21,829
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PNW
I had a thread feeding grandmas chickens, I hadn't posted since last July, its locked now, I cant unlock it, BUT....
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/feeding-grandmas-chickens.1249861/page-4

I noticed last July of feed shortages and oyster calcium- I am currently getting feed from Chewy due to the inconsistent supply at our local stores.

Captureqw.JPG I am getting this, its $34 for 50lbs, I have 15 hens.
I have used better feeds but they are now to expensive.
I have had to make my own feed due to being snowed in for 3 weeks and caught off guard. I used Storey's Guide to Raising Chickens as a guide.
I always plant extra kale, cabbage, and other things in my garden just for the hens.
I clip the big cabbage leaves and extra kale and freeze them for winter greens.

Good job everyone on paying attention, adapting and working out solutions.


Capture19.JPG
 

Regina Larsen

Songster
May 6, 2020
233
562
181
Long Island NY USDA zone 7
I am definitely keeping an eye on this issue too. Managing flock numbers is first on my list, I could raise more birds in the summer when green feeds and bugs are abundant but a lot fewer in winter when there are no bugs or greens. I have only 3 or 4 laying hens at this point because indoor space is limited in winter. I also find that a very small flock can be fed for not much more than the cost of buying eggs and with 4 good layers I can sell enough eggs to pay for all the feed. I am able to store a years supply in a drum with a small flock. My flock has been in a tractor improving my garden plots and next spring I will have some room to grow some forage crops. Wheat, sunflowers and clover have grown well in my climate so that’s my plan.
Ranger Gord ... love it. i swear red green is some of the funniest tv ever 😂
 

GrandmaDeKorte

Grandmas Coop
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 8, 2014
4,887
21,829
796
PNW
@GrandmaDeKorte - My girls love kale. I grow it in a raised bed and any leaves that grow near the enclosing fence are fair game. Kale holds up through the winter in the ground. Any benefit to freezing rather than leaving in the garden until needed?
yes, I find I get more growth when I pick the biggest leaves , I do leave the whole plant in the garden all winter.
 

allgr8dogs

Chirping
Dec 26, 2020
65
101
73
Assuming they maintained flocks at all (and fair warning, their expectations were MUCH MUCH lower), you might find these pages really instructive - (for which I thank @saysfaa)

Tl;dr? About 80% (mostly junk) grains supplimented by 20% "meat scraps" (no longer allowed inclusion in commercial feed mixes). The grains were largely a blend of corn and wheat, plus sometimes oats and/or barley. Meat scraps were about 55% protein, 2% fiber, 10% fat.

You aren't going to be able to duplicate that if things all go to hell, unless your circumstances are pretty unique. Thankfully, most of us have not suffered complete absence of feeds thru the pandemic thus far, but changing brands, or substituting a starter/grower for an all flock (or vice versa) since they tend to have similar nutritional profiles has been pretty common.

My advice, which you should feel free to disregard, is that if it gets that bad, eat the chicken early - will cost you more resources to keep alive than it produces. and I say that as someone with a stable flock on a potential 30 acres (though only about 1.75a is currently given over toT
 

allgr8dogs

Chirping
Dec 26, 2020
65
101
73
This is somewhat of a longer term solution but I started planting Siberian Pea bushes around my property with the idea that if there was a feed shortage I could still feed my chickens, or collect them and have my family eat them if it got that bad. So far I've planted 10 of the Siberian Pea Bushes, and this spring I'll plant more.
I keep 3 months of feed at all times.
 

allgr8dogs

Chirping
Dec 26, 2020
65
101
73
This is somewhat of a longer term solution but I started planting Siberian Pea bushes around my property with the idea that if there was a feed shortage I could still feed my chickens, or collect them and have my family eat them if it got that bad. So far I've planted 10 of the Siberian Pea Bushes, and this spring I'll plant more.
I keep 3 months of feed at all times.
 

saysfaa

Songster
Jul 1, 2017
896
1,921
241
Upper Midwest, USA
"The Siberian peashrub is a perennial leafy shrub with an extensive root system. Each plant is self-compatible, meaning that it can self-fertilize and produce seed without another plant nearby. Being self-compatible makes it easy for a planted Siberian peashrub to produce seed that can spread to areas where it was not planted. Siberian peashrub grows in forest understories, edge habitats, and open, grassy habitats." https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/invasives/terrestrialplants/woody/siberianpeashrub.html

I don't have siberian pea shrub but my land is overrun by floribunda rose and autumn olive so I have an idea of how hard it is to deal with species that resprout from the base after you cut or burn them.
 

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