High protein/high nutrition winter feed supplement

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Anthony Frazier, Nov 25, 2017.

  1. Anthony Frazier

    Anthony Frazier Hatching

    Oct 28, 2017
    Somerville, OH 45064
    In an effort to get away from adding water soluble vitamins in my dedicated 5 gal waterer, as it gums everything up and has to be dumped once a day I went in search of other options. Organic kelp meal was the answer based on my research, delivered via free-choice. The chickens enjoy it on its own and it's considerably more cost-effective. As I am a tinkerer I felt I could improve on just supplying them kelp meal and, for lack of better terminology, kill two birds with one stone. The final result has provided me with a supplement that not only chickens happily eat in a free-choice setting while not deviating from their regular feed but will provide them with increased protein and nutrients for molding and often unpleasant Ohio weather.
    Ingredients(I opted for all organic-not req'd):
    1lb organic split peas

    3oz organic kelp meal(horse feed supply website)

    1/2c organic steel cut oats

    1/2c organic scratch

    1/4c organic meal worms

    1tsp organic turmeric

    I put the split peas in the blender and pulsed them until they were the approximate size of regular feed crumbles. After that I added the ground peas and remaining ingredients in a large Tupperware, shook it up, and place in the chickens supplemental feeder.
  2. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Free Ranging

    Hi, welcome to BYC! :frow

    So what is the nutritional break down of your recipe? :pop
  3. kthysse

    kthysse In the Brooder

    Dec 3, 2016
    Madison WI
    So I just decided to give my chickens sea kelp supplements as my birds don’t free range and have eaten all the grass and other greens out of their run
  4. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Free Ranging

    Hi, welcome to BYC! :frow

    Have you thought about sprouting or growing fodder? It's as easy as getting some seed (feed grade), soaking them for a few hours and then rinsing at least twice a day for about 7 days and it grows into a lush carpet of greenness, indoor size like a cake lid with holes poked. I use barley because it was shown to have the least amount of issue with mold and such. It also has about 14% protein and my birds love it even though they have access to pasture sun up to sun down! I bought a 50# bag for about $18 at the feed store. Our prices are usually high compared to other locations.

    It's true runs can become very depleted very fast. If it's just dirt in there now, I suggest using grass clippings (no herbicides or pesticides and not longer than 4 inches), fallen leaves, pine needles, used hay, coop shavings... whatever you can do to make it similar to the forest floor. Baron dirt has no method of disease control, where as the forest floor has lots of microbes and stuff breaking things down. It invites worms and bugs as well, which the birds will have a grand time scratching for.

    In addition... IF you are using a formulated chicken ration, then it IS formulated to meet the needs of chickens in captivity. In other words, doing supplement might help, but it's kind of about what you prefer. Personally I feed 20% protein feed all year long. And nothing less than 16% is ever acceptable, other than as a treat not to exceed 10% of their total daily intake. :)
  5. rjohns39

    rjohns39 Enabler

    Aug 20, 2015
    Smith County, TN
    That's a very interesting mix you have there. The only concern I would have is the oats and then the question is what percent of your mixed feed is oats and barley. You don't want more than 15% by volume total oats and barley. Depending on how hard it is to get organic alfalfa meal would boost protein and amino acids. If you'd like to see a rough order nutritional profile I can plop it in here. I used fish meal in lieu of Meal worms as I don't have the worms in my tool and I'm too lazy to add them. But the profiles are close.

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