High protein foods for your birds.

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by rancher hicks, Nov 3, 2011.

  1. rancher hicks

    rancher hicks Chicken Obsessed

    Feb 28, 2009
    Syracuse, NY
    1. Pumpkin seeds. Now is the time to try to get some cheaply. Ask anyone selling pumpkins and then store them in a cool place for let them freeze. You can thaw them out in a bucket and then give it to the birds through the winter.

    2. Asparagus. If you haven't harvested it in time why not toss it to the chickens.

    3. Cauliflower. For a warm meal in the winter why not steam some up and give it to the girls.

    4. Peanuts. Not sure whether it would hurt them but some feed stores sell cracked peanuts pieces.

    5. Spinach. Did you have spinach for dinner and the kids don't like it? Toss it to the birds. You can also grow spinach in the early spring and fall. It likes the cold weather.

    6. Broccoli. Same as cauliflower.

    7. Quinoa. I've never heard of this one so I posted what yahoo had to say about it. I'm not sure where you'd buy it either.

    All of the plants on my list that have preceded this one fall short in comparison to quinoa’s protein potential. Although it has a little less protein per calorie than a burger, on its own it is a perfect protein and the king of all grains. It has the highest percentage of protein content at 16 percent per volume! Meaning that a measly ¼ cup (dry) quinoa has 6 grams of protein. If you paired this grain with a couple of spears of asparagus and a beautiful cauliflower, broccoli and sprouted mung bean stir–fry, you would have an easy meal with 30 grams of protein or more!

    NOW NONE OF THESE ARE MEANT TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR COMMERCIAL FEED. but it seems to me a little here and there can't hurt and might help with the molting season.

    I just wanted to post this and what you do with it or your OP about it is up to you.

    Take care,

  2. SteveBaz

    SteveBaz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 6, 2011
    Pacific North West
  3. papinator

    papinator Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 4, 2011
    Des Moines
    I feed my ladies a little scoop of black, oiled sunflower seeds. My girls love it, and a little bit goes a long way. They are rich in protein, and you can get them from a Shoppers Supply or TSC for pretty cheap when you buy it by weight in the paper sacks.
  4. Barry Natchitoches

    Barry Natchitoches Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 4, 2008
    My chickens love raw broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, spinach, greens and lettuce.

    You don't have to cook the broccoli, cabbage, or cauliflower -- it gives bored chickens something to do to peck the veggies raw.

    BTW, the chickens love the outer leaves. I grow all of these vegetables in my garden, and I'll harvest the plant for my own family, but give the outer leaves (the ones that many stores trim off the veggies before they sell them) to the chickens.
  5. rancher hicks

    rancher hicks Chicken Obsessed

    Feb 28, 2009
    Syracuse, NY
    Quote:Cheap? BOSS are $28 for a 50# bag here. If my math is correct that's $1.78 a pound. That's twice what it was a few months ago. That's at both CM and TSC. CM has it on sale for $24.99. So the assortment of veggies might be cheaper and the variety keeps away the boredom. Not to mention I can grow pumpkins and some of the other stuff.

    I do give them BOSS but for 50 birds that's a lot of BOSS. I mix it with the scratch.

    No one mentioned the Quinoa. Does anyone know what it is or where to get it?
  6. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

    Jul 8, 2008
    Fleetwood, PA
    Quote:BOSS is about 15% protein, not any higher than chicken feed.
  7. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

    May 8, 2007
    Although quinoa has a more balanced amino acid profile compared to cereal grains, it only has as much protein as the lowest protein layer feed. Quinoa is often sold at health food stores and you can buy seed for planting online. It's not as common as a feed ingredient, so you might have more trouble finding a local source, depending on where you live.

    The peanuts have the most protein, at 25%. That's the only food on the list that would actually raise the protein level of a chicken's diet, if you added it to a diet of layer feed. They're all good foods and have healthy things about them, they just aren't as high in protein as a 16% layer feed.
  8. KenK

    KenK Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 23, 2011
    Quote:It is not, you divided the wrong way. : )
  9. rancher hicks

    rancher hicks Chicken Obsessed

    Feb 28, 2009
    Syracuse, NY
    Quote:It is not, you divided the wrong way. : )

    Hey I'm old. [​IMG] 0.56 cents a pound but still expensive. When it used to be $14.99 .
  10. rancher hicks

    rancher hicks Chicken Obsessed

    Feb 28, 2009
    Syracuse, NY
    Quote:Dumor layer has 18%. but the added protein will help during molting. Plus you can give them a variety to beat the boredom and save a few pennies. You know what they say a Bennie shaved is a Bennie Urned. Plus the oil is good for their feathers. I mix in some Cod liver oil now and then in the scratch.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by