Give me the scoop on BOSS

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by gabbyscritters, Oct 31, 2010.

  1. gabbyscritters

    gabbyscritters Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2009
    fredonia, wi
    Ok, I read that alot of people feed BOSS. I know that it is black oil sunflower seeds but I want the sccop in it. Why, how, in the shell, advangtages, problems?
    Iquirying minds want to know!
  2. Illia

    Illia Crazy for Colors

    Oct 19, 2009
    Forks, WA
    It helps the plumage as well as egg laying. How to feed it? Well, a lot of people complain that the chickens don't care for it - But I always toss mine out with a mix of other grains/treats. They go nuts for it that way. Otherwise, straight in their feed, they could care less.

    Now, as for problems - I used to do fully shelled seeds until I had a hen scar up her throat trying to swallow one. She had breathing troubles and was housed in our actual house for days until it all cleared up. After that, we stopped with the BOSS treat throwing and switched to shelled/chipped forms. That way, we just put it in their feed and they'll eat it up, as it looks like the rest of their feed. [​IMG]
  3. brendapa

    brendapa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 2, 2010
    Chester County, PA
    I feed the shelled seeds & chips to the silkies as treat and they like it. They also get bird seed, not scratch as a treat. No corn.
  4. Chick named Lola

    Chick named Lola Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 15, 2010
    Is it bad to give it to them whole?
  5. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 15, 2008
    Birds can easily digest them whole as well as most herbivorous mammals. They have always been in mixes for things like gerbils or hamsters but I think they first really became popular with horse owners as a healthier alternative to grain based feeds and now many keepers of small herbivores such as rabbits or guinea pigs also use them as well as spreading in to the chicken world. The shell has a lot of useful vitamins and minerals. As a whole boss has a lot of oils and omega fatty acids to improve skin and coat/feathers. Plus more kcals than corn which means more energy for producing heat. For mammals the shell also serves as fiber to keep the digestive tract moving but with birds that's less important. If you buy the chips without the hulls the protein is much higher so in some cases you may want that over the extra nutrients in the hull but the increased cost may not be worth it depending what else you can get there. I can get whole boss in 50lb bags and the chips in only 15lb bags. If feeding a lot of boss it is best to also add flax or nuts to balance the fatty acids but when using it as a treat or in place of scratch that is not a big deal.
  6. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

    Jun 1, 2009
    Sunflower seed contains 14-16 percent of protein, 32% of oil/ fat, 3 1/2% of mineral salts, but also 28 to 30% of crude indigestible fiber.


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