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Fodder

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by chickenman111, Sep 20, 2014.

  1. chickenman111

    chickenman111 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've been feeding fodder to my chickens for over a year now, I've mainly fed them that and nothing else. I've done some more research, and it looks like I can use it as a supplement, but not as the sole source of feed. Is that right, do I need to pick up some more layer feed, and feed them fodder as a supplement. what ratio should I use?
     
  2. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    I have never done the fodder thing, however, in the summer, mine free range quite a bit, and when the insect level is high, I do have the girls eating less feed, but they still eat some. I am thinking that the green of the pasture would be close to the equivalent of the fodder.

    One can have feed tested, they often do when feeding cattle, but may be cost prohibited for this scale. Personally, I would give them layer feed too. I try and only give enough that the pan is mostly empty at night, but not quite.

    I think the fodder would be more of a supplement.

    Mrs K
     
  3. chickenman111

    chickenman111 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Ok, I'll probably start them back on a layer feed diet with fodder as a supplement. I appreciate your help.
     
  4. nepoisopen

    nepoisopen Out Of The Brooder

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    The way I'd approach this question is like this: "Are they laying eggs, walking around, clucking, acting like chickens?" <- if that answer to that is "yes" then continue.
    In my own experience, only feeding mine fodder wasn't successful, (they stopped laying started moulting, etc) BUT, they had been raised on traditional layer feed/mash, so I use it as a supplement.
    If you're having no such problems, then continue.
    IMO, <- (OPINION ONLY!!!) feeding layer mash is really just convenient and something that big ag got over on us.
    ;-)
    Don't get me wrong, layer mash works fine, but it's not a necessity, that's what I'm saying.
    Lots of people all over the world feed chickens all kinds of things, and they do fine.
    Go with what works for you!

    Also, I'm going to back to feeding fodder only as of the first week of October.
    I read that the drop in laying/moulting/etc. is only temporary, and that I should have just given them more time...
    But again, whatever works!
    Hope that didn't come off too snarky...
    Cheers.
    -KS
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  5. chickenman111

    chickenman111 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I haven't gotten an egg in quite a while, but I've had quite a few problems, they had a bad bout with mites, they refused to drink their water, and several died from dehydration (their back to drinking their water now, not sure why they wouldn't drink it), and now they've started to molt, so I don't know what to think. It's been problem after problem.
     
  6. nepoisopen

    nepoisopen Out Of The Brooder

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    They drink less water when eating fodder, because they get more moisture from the fodder itself.
    Like you, I had a lot of "issues" when I started, including the mites...
    So odd to hear someone else who had the same problems?
    What's hard to distinguish in my situation is that I started feeding fodder the same time of the year as you are, when they are normally going through moulting, (at least mine are) so, I can't say...
    Something I'm going to try is this, give them free access a higher protein feed, (22% or more) and fodder.
    My THEORY is they'll eat a lot less of the 22% feed as they "acclimate", and eventually, we won't have to use it at all?
    IDK.
    Interesting that you had some of the same "experience" that detracted me from doing it exclusively.
    Again, keep in mind that moulting is common this time of year...
    Cheers
    -KS
     
  7. ashleighchicken

    ashleighchicken New Egg

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    Sep 21, 2014
    Ready for winter feathers. I normally get 4 eggs a day . I got 1 yesterday fssss
     
  8. ashleighchicken

    ashleighchicken New Egg

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    Sep 21, 2014
    Can anyone help please? . I feed pellet in mornings n grain in afternoon. And they have a mash n grit feeder throughout the day .
     
  9. ashleighchicken

    ashleighchicken New Egg

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    Sep 21, 2014
    Is this normal. ?
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Depends on the type of grain you are growing your fodder from and what the protein level of that grain is.
    Also depends on if they free range and what they have available there.
    They need calcium and protein for sure........and the vitamins, minerals in commercial feed, maybe not necessary but, up to you.

    My flock is confined, they get bugs in their large run and I provide some greens to them...I do wheat fodder in the winter.
    I like to feed an 'all flock' 20% protein crumble to all ages and genders. Makes life much simpler to store and distribute one type of chow that everyone can eat.
    I have calcium available at all times for the layers, oyster shell mixed with rinsed, dried, crushed chicken egg shells in a separate container. The higher protein crumble offsets the 8% protein scratch grains and other kitchen/garden scraps I like to offer.
     
    1 person likes this.

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