Good feed to fatten them up?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by NellaBean, Jul 12, 2010.

  1. NellaBean

    NellaBean Graceland Farms

    Mar 4, 2009
    Broodyland, TN
    My Coop
    I have a few "thin" birds....just younger or more shy birds who aren't getting their spot at the dinner table. What would be a good feed to help fatten them back up now? Extra scratch? Cat food? Scrambled eggs?
  2. Wolfwoman

    Wolfwoman Songster

    May 5, 2010
    Chickaloon, Alaska
    [​IMG] Am interesting in knowing this too!
  3. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

    Jun 1, 2009
    You could try soaking Barley in milk overnight and topping there feed with it.

    I had this problem some time back with my Exhibition Rhode Island Red and then I switched to a higher protein feed (22% protein) and the birds started to really put on weight nice and the older bird I am able to add a good Scratch Grain to cut the amount of protein down to around 19% protein.

    Example -
    If I use 70 Lbs of a 22% protein feed and add 30 Lbs of a 14% all grain Pigeon feed (used as a scratch) I get 100 Lbs of feed that is around 19% protein.

    Feed - 22% ÷ 100 = .22 x 70 Lbs = 15.4% protein
    Scratch - 14% ÷ 100 = .14 x 30 Lbs = 4.2% protein

    15.4% + 4.2% = 19.6% protein

  4. Ariel301

    Ariel301 Songster

    Nov 14, 2009
    Kingman Arizona
    You want feeds high in fat and protein.

    Corn is notorious for being fattening and cheap, that's why it is fed so much to animals being prepared for slaughter. Oats also contain about the highest fat and protein you will get in a grain. Sunflower seeds are pretty fatty too. Milk would be good in small amounts if you could do it cheaply; I feed mine a lot of dairy products (mostly whey left from cheesemaking) since I have milk goats, and it seems to keep weight on them really well. Some cat food would be ok, but not too much as it is too salty for chickens. You could top-dress their feed with corn oil perhaps. If it is available to you, maybe you could use a gamebird feed (higher protein content) or broiler feed. I wouldn't go overboard and do all of that at once, though!

    The best thing, if they are having to fight too hard for food, would be if you can put them in their own area for a while and let them eat free-choice where there is less competition for it.
  5. NanoByte

    NanoByte In the Brooder

    Jul 11, 2010
    Have two or more feeding bowls so they all get enough.
  6. MareeZoCool

    MareeZoCool Songster

    If they are having trouble getting up to the food dishes, try adding another dish or two for feedings. That way, the boss hogs.... umm chickens won't be able to claim everything, and the less dominant birds will have a chance to eat the goodies.
  7. Chickenmaven

    Chickenmaven Songster

    Feb 6, 2009
    Quote:Yeah, I wouldn't change your feed. If your "piggy" chooks have access to fattier feed, it'll lead to health problems for them.
  8. NellaBean

    NellaBean Graceland Farms

    Mar 4, 2009
    Broodyland, TN
    My Coop
    Yes, I will be rearranging this weekend to deal with the pecking order vs food issue.....but also want to add a little something extra to the skinny minnies diets...I am thinking more along the lines of something I can give them for a half hour while I am outside to referee the food battles. Like an extra supplemental feed. They will still get free choice access to regular feed during the day.

    I do have access to a 24% gamebird starter feed.....I could get that and mix it in. I planned on getting some of the floating catfish feed to treat the ducks....and that has a HUGE protein 30 something ish....I could top dress their feed with that?

    I do have a huge bag of the BOSS. I have been tossing it out as scratch but could start put larger amounts out for them as well.
  9. greenfamilyfarms

    greenfamilyfarms Big Pippin'

    Feb 27, 2008
    Elizabethtown, NC
    It helps to worm them first. Scrambled eggs should do the trick. I wouldn't suggest giving them a lot of grains right now. Grains make them accumulate fat, just like chips and candy makes people accumulate fat.
  10. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

    Jun 1, 2009
    Quote:I keep hearing this and yes it is somewhat true but there are a lot of "High Grain" poultry feeds out in the market.
    Here is a quote from Buckeye Nutrition (Buckeye Feeds) -
    FEEDING DIRECTIONS: Feed to laying hens at the rate of 60% Gold Standard Laying Crumbles and
    40% grain. For lighter weight hens and hens in extremely heavy production, the level of Gold
    Standard Laying Crumbles to grain may be increased to 70% Crumbles and 30% grain. Always
    maintain a clean, fresh supply of water along with oyster shells and grit for the laying hens. standard laying crumbles.pdf

    A lot has to do with the breed of chicken you are feeding. Some breeds will handle a high grain feed and not get overly fat.

    Like I said in my last post I can feed a 22% protein feed mixed with a 14% pigeon feed at the rate of -
    70 Lbs of a 22% protein game bird feed and 30 Lbs of a 14% all grain Pigeon feed and I not one fat bird.
    Right know I am trying a feed mix that is 50 Lbs of a 28% Game Bird Feed and 50 Lbs of a 14% all grain Pigeon feed (with some extras added [​IMG] ). The pen that I have on this mix has been on it for a little over 2 months and are do great with plenty of muscle/ meat and size with very little fat.

    Now I am not saying that we all should start feeding a high grain feed but if you are feeding a higher protein feed and a good grain mix that has a good mixture of grains like for example Peas, Wheat, Linseed, Rice, Buckwheat, and Black Oil Sunflower Seed then you can get away with a bit more grain in there mix..


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