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Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by shadowmane, Mar 28, 2012.
That's true, I didn't even think of the tooth decay issue. Thanks!
I pour either the whey from raw milk yogurt or some of the drained liquid from the FF (that also contains the yogurt probiotics) over the dogs dry food which is gone in 30 seconds. They really like that plus it is so good for them.
Fermenting containers... buckets? crocks? other options?
What are the various containers folks ferment in? I am using 5 gallon food grade buckets but will soon outgrow them and am really trying to come up with one or two large containers rather than four 5 gallon buckets.
What are other options folks have explored? Especially those who feed a large flock during the winter?
I use a 5 gallon bucket also but I have far less hens than you.
I know some use a plastic garbage can & just found a long tool to stir it (or their hands) but I always thought one of those plastic round composters you could spin would be pretty cool as FF container if I had a large flock.
I have a 15 gallon pickling crock. It's working out FABULOUSLY. Except, of course, it weighed a tone before it was full and now that is full I'm never moving it without a forklift (or my husband, which is the rough equivilant...) I am in the process of whittling a sort of long paddle so I can stir all the way to the bottom. It's a bit of a different deal because I'm only fermenting whole grains. I still have my ground feed in a 2 gallon bucket, I don't have that many chicks. But, now that the 15 guineas are on that feed ration, I think I'm going to have to upgrade to a 5 gallon bucket. I'm looking for another crock. The best part about having the HUGE VAT of fermenting whole grains is that I can always scoop some of the "juice" out into the other bucket(s) if I feel like the ferment is getting weak because the turnover of the food is at a higher rate. Right now I have three seperate feed rations going, which kind of sucks. Next year I'm hoping to be able to find fish meal locally so that I don't have to purchase game bird starter for the guineas and turkeys. Then I can have only two feeds going, and top dress the game bird feed with the extra protien by weight. which will be much easier than mixing and maintaining three seperate ferments. besides, I'm completely convinced that freshly ground whole (gmo free) grains top dressed w/protien and addititives are way more healthy that super processed crumbles.
yeah, once the guineas go outside they're getting the same thing my free range chickens get, a little fermented grain at night to "sweeten the pot" for going into the coop. It means that I can shut them up early if I need to because they all come running into the coop as soon as they see the feed dish. Right now the guineas a 5 weeks and the turkeys 2 weeks, so they're not outside yet. Guineas go outside this weekend, but have to be shut up for a few more weeks, which means they keep eating.... My crock is NOT narrow at the top. it's 19 inches high and 17 1/2 inches across the top. It's a great size. as for weight... well, I don't plan on moving it. I use a slotted spoon to dish out the food anyhow. I really want to find fish meal so I can do the same ration + different premix for game birds and chicks. I'll always have two different things going when I have chicks, because I only grind the grains for the chicks. I'm also grinding for the meat birds I think. I read a very interesting side by side study where the ones fed entirely ground & fermented grains were at a better processing weight still with no health issues than the ones fed identical amounts of whole and ground fermented grains. So, since the point is to get healthy birds to a good processing weight, I think I won't switch them over to the whole grains.
Here's something I've been mulling over in my head. I haven't figured out the exact process yet but I'm working on it.
If you look up automatic chicken feeder or treadle chicken feeder on youtube you'll see plans for a covered feeder that has the lid being raised when a hen steps on the treadle. I am thinking about a way to make one of these and put a new kitty litter pan (or something comparable) inside it to hold the fermented feed and not soak into the wood construction. This kind of design would benefit me in a couple of ways. I would only have to feed once per day and I wouldn't have to pick up the feed at night (so the mice aren't being fed).
Quick question -- the film on top of my FF is grey/black. Is this ok? I added more ACV this morning just in case.
Some molds are black, so I don't know what to tell you...is there any way to skim it off?