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Homemade feed questions

Discussion in 'Nutrition - Sponsored by Purina Poultry' started by crealbilly, Oct 30, 2016.

  1. crealbilly

    crealbilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think i would like to try mixing up my own feed. But i would like to keep it as simple as possible with availible grains from rual king. I found this layer recipe in a Storey publication that seems pretty simple. But i think i would like about 18% protein. My layers seem to do best on 18% all flock. I also have a few tuekeys that are on 21% meat bird.

    How could i adjust this recipe for 18% and 21% protein? And is this a good recipe or not? Im not to keen on the soybean meal what could i use to substitute? Also i think i would use either whole or cracked corn instead of cornmeal - is that ok?

    [​IMG]

    I also found Manna Pro Calf-Manna Performance Supplement 50 Lb its 28% precent protein. Could i also use it to bring up the protien level of the base recipe? If so how much as per the base recipe?
    http://www.ruralking.com/manna-pro-calf-manna-50-lb.html

    Sorry im full of newbie questions. My property backs up to the shawnee national forest in southern IL, so sadly due to many predators... my flock is confined to large yards, surrounded by electric fences. So they never free range.

    Thanks
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2016
  2. DrPatrickBiggs

    DrPatrickBiggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Great questions, thank you for asking!

    Homemade feed is a trend we are seeing today with some backyard flocks. These homemade diets may actually sprout digestive trouble and hurt your flock. With a made-from-scratch formula at home, you can’t be sure of the nutritional value and proper proportion of each ingredient without consulting an expert. Not to mention, mixing or adding extra ingredients is a lot of unnecessary work and expense.

    We only recommend feeding a complete and balanced feed. Birds will sort and can ingest too little or too much of a particular feed at the expense of the most critical nutrients. Feeding a good poultry starter or grower feed would be the most appropriate feed to provide. Learn about Purina's complete feeds here: https://www.purinamills.com/chicken-feed

     
  3. crealbilly

    crealbilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I contemplated on wether i should respond or not. I dont want to come off a cocky or rude - i'm really a pretty easy going guy. I thought that i was asking the experts, that's why i asked in this forum instead the general forum.

    Could you please go back and look at my orignal post and give your professional advise if the recipe i posted is sufficient for layers? It's not that im dead set against bag feed, its just getting so dogone expensive... i have approx 50 chickens and they go through right around 2 50 lb bags of feed a week. Im being conservative in my estimates of $15.00 a bag but at $15 a bag x 2 x 52 weeks in a year - im spending a minimum of $1,560 a year to keep my small flock fed. This does not include 33 miles round trip to the feed store, gas and wear on my puckup truck. Im not trying to be a tight wad. I'm just trying to explore a more economical way to feed my small flock.

    Thanks
     
  4. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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  5. shortgrass

    shortgrass Overrun With Chickens

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    Ok. 50 chickens. Nix the bagged feed and make your own. I do, and it only costs me about $75 to mix up about 500# of feed, which is wayyyyy cheaper than buying bags of premade feed. Plus, you get the bonus of the chooks actually getting all the nutrients, since its fresh grains that haven't been stored for 2 years then cracked open to let all the nutrients leach out.


    We were just discussing this on this thread, very last page.
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...eeping-thread-ots-welcome/38910#post_17728049

    @Leahs Mom just shared a great spreadsheet that you can plug all your grains into to make your recipe and make sure you've covered all the bases with protein, fat, vitamins, etc.


    Oh, and cornmeal vs cracked corn; you'll get better digestion from the cornmeal, but the values are pretty much the same. I use cracked corn in my recipe. O don't see what it could hurt.

    Eta: here's my recipe. I ferment it too, so they can get every little bit of nutrition from all the grains and ease digestion. This would be for laying hens; protein ends up at about 17%.

    There are too many different combos to look at, but your recipe looks good so far ;)

    50# corn
    100# millet
    100# oats or barley, depending on price, or I use both sometimes... (I prefer barley)
    100# alfalfa pellets
    50# BOSS or beet pulp, also, depending on time if year, I'll use both. Usually during molt.
    5# molasses
    2# DE (bug deterrent. Not worms, bugs, like weevils and borers)
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2016
  6. crealbilly

    crealbilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you... i live in the heartland (southern IL) and was just watching the local news last night. It was another bumper crop year. Corn and grain prices are at rock bottom. Now the real question is will we see that reflected in the price of bagged feed?
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2016
  7. shortgrass

    shortgrass Overrun With Chickens

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    I wouldn't hold my breath for it ;)

    We had good harvest here too, in CO, but the wheat got too much water and the protein is now too low, so the elevators are charging more for storing all the wheat that they can't sell yet. Makes the wheat cheaper sure, but then add back in the cost of storing it until use and they'll just tack that right back on to the sticker price at the feed store.

    That's one if the major factors in my decision to mix my own feed. That way, if I want organic, I can go get it and not have to pay an arm and a leg for a 50# sack. That, and no worrying about it "expiring". Fresh grain doesn't " expire" for years unless it gets wet or eaten ;) The nutrients are all still there too, so no need for all the vitamin powders and additives that are usually in the bagged stuff.

    I just think if it as following my grandma's pie crust recipe. Lol sure, I can pay three times as much as I need to to have a quick premade pie crust, but grandmas has the same ingredients and is fresh and tastier, albeit just a wee bit more effort. No offense to feed companies, who do a great job supplying the demand for convenience, but I'm just not a convenient gal ha-ha; I prefer homemade. Farm/backyard chickens and feeding them has been around way longer than the companies who now control the market of "chicken fast food" ;)
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2016
  8. crealbilly

    crealbilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I really appreciate your response. Ive been studying up on both of them.

    A couple of questions. How do you mix yours? I have a cement mixer i haven't mixed any cement in yet. Where do you find all the ingredients? I scoped out the farm store today - they had some but not all of the ingredients.

    I also got the spreadsheet from leahs mom today. Pretty cool...
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2016
  9. shortgrass

    shortgrass Overrun With Chickens

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    Oh I would love a cement mixer; my husband has actually mentioned that before, getting a cement mixer :D

    My kids mix it for me, in 55 gallon drums, 500 pounds at a time, using buckets of each grain in rotation. It gives them responsibility and exercise, and teaches them about animal nutrition and feeds and feeding at the same time ;)

    I also ferment my feed. Increases availability of nutrients and essentially makes 100# of feed out of 50.

    I find most of it local. We have hay, wheat, and corn on the farm, but I buy it from the mill so I can have it bagged for me. I have to go to a separate place about 10 miles up the hill to get my millet. And it's a 250 mile round trip if I want anything extra special, like molasses powder or probiotics. I look around when I'm out and about, too. Never know if a neighbor has a field of BOSS or pumpkins that they'll trade for eggs or dressed chickens ;)


    *I've also seen ads on Craig's list for some grains I've been wanting to try, so you never know what you can find in ads or the good ol yellow pages :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2016
  10. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Overrun With Chickens

    Hi. [​IMG]

    I don't have all your answers, but I found this recipe the other day and it sounds pretty good and simple.

    http://thefrugalchicken.com/organic-homemade-chicken-feed/

    So it indicates you can bring the protein level up by adding peas. I feed my chickens flock raiser with 20% protein. All seem healthy.

    You might consider sprouting barley. The article talk a little about sprouting. My flock loves it. Have you considered fermenting as a way of cutting cost. Highly recommended, check out the link in my signature line. [​IMG]

    Also, anything my LFS doesn't stock, they will usually order for me and at a very good price. Maybe you can talk to yours and see?

    Best wishes!
     

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