Fermented Feed Question

Melky

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For those who ferment feed just wanted to see if others notice any difference in fermenting and mold incidence at earlier number of days during the winter. I ferment in my laundry room and I am switching from starter grower to layer. All fresh feed. I am noticing when I ferment it was quicker since winter to develop mold. I have stopped temporarily and want to know if anyone has seen this also? Don’t worry don’t feed anything bad to chickens. I am currently just feeding wet mash made same day or dry feed till I figure out why I am having trouble with this. I fermented one daily batch of feed at a time and was alternating bins used. So batch fermented while feeding. Previous literature reports fermenting for 3-4 days before feeding and I could only do 3 days max. Now can only do 1-2 days. Looking for suggestions or advice. I don’t want to keep throwing away feed. Only changes winter and layer feed mixed with starter grower. I do a 50/50 water to feed mix.
 

Shadrach

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I had a similar problem. The feed looked to me as if there was mold growing on the surface by day three. It wasn't the white frothy stuff. It was gray.
I gave up. I wasn't a great believer in fermenting feed to start with, but I thought I would give it a try.
I feed a mash now. I make it semi dry the night before and add a little hot water in the morning.
 

Shadrach

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I did look at a couple of other mold v yeast topics elsewhere. I had yeast at day three but by the afternoon there was mold if the pics in the link you supplied are anything to go by.
Maybe differing types of feed mold faster than others.
It doesn't really matter, the mash is fine and greatly reduces the waste and mess which was what I was most interested in.
 

Melky

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Are you sure it's mold and not the scoby? I had one type of feed that it would appear in, but I've never seen it in my other fermented feed. It is like a fuzzy white scum on the top, but it's not mold - it's yeast.

Here's a good comparison:
https://www.fermentools.com/blog/mold-or-yeast/

Yeah its the same as the mold examples in your first set of photos and it will look ok and next day mold.
 

SueT

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Scoby= 'symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast'
I find my feed ferments fine just sitting overnight, sometimes I have enough left for 2 or 3 days but I don't make much ahead anymore. Also in winter, it can freeze in the chickens' bowls, so I fill half of the bowls with dry feed when daytime temps are going to be below 20º.
 

Melky

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Would fermenting with a higher water content prevent mold? Of those who successfully ferment what is the water to feed ratio that you use?
@SueT
 
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SueT

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3 cups feed to 2 cups water is what I do, maybe a little more water at times.
 

rosemarythyme

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Would fermenting with a higher water content prevent mold? Of those who successfully ferment what is the water to feed ratio that you use?

I only have mold issues in summer, if it gets around high 80s or so. So at times like that I don't really aim to "ferment" and I only make enough for 1 to 2 days at a time. So you may have to do that here since it seems the mold problem is persisting.

I use less water in winter actually, as lower temps = slower fermenting and less evaporation. I also make less FF overall as the chickens are less interested in eating it in winter and I don't want it to sit out long enough to freeze. I don't have a water/feed ratio though, I just eyeball it. "About 1 inch above feed level" isn't very useful unless we have identical set ups and climate. I aim for a fairly stiff consistency.
 

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