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I am out of feed until tomorrow - all advice appreciated!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by lisahaschickens, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. lisahaschickens

    lisahaschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2009
    Vancouver, WA
    I am a relative newbie here and am raising my first batch of 15 chicks to be layers. They are 8 weeks old now and I have underestimated their ability to eat faster and FASTER as they get older. I am feeding organic and partially free-ranging and I want to keep it that way. This morning they are nearly out of feed. My new shipment of organic feed will be delivered tomorrow afternoon (I thought that would be soon enough and I was wrong). I cannot get any chicken feed locally that is acceptable to me (I am working on that, but right now, I can't).

    Soooo...... The question is, can I manage to feed them myself for the next 30 hours give or take until my new feed shipment comes? They love yogurt and I am planning to give them an extra big serving today... and I could probably get a cabbage or some broccoli to hang in their run for them to play with/eat. But what about the bulk of their food? I have read that oatmeal is good. I have some 5-grain hot cereal in my pantry that I don't like. It contains the following:

    - whole grain oats
    - wheat
    - rye
    - barley
    - triticale
    - flaxseed

    Those are all the ingredients. Can I feed this to them? Would it be a good or bad idea? Should I cook it in water first or give it to them uncooked? Any other ideas on how I could concoct some food for about a day for them?

    Thanks for any and all help!
     
  2. Indiana hens

    Indiana hens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 25, 2008
    Pendleton, Indiana
    have any corn meal?
     
  3. briteday

    briteday Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 16, 2008
    Northern NV
    I think the cereal sounds fine, as would the cornmeal. Some whole grain bread, spaghetti, scrambled or hardboiled eggs, ...
     
  4. Jena

    Jena The Welsh Witch

    Nov 2, 2008
    Cardiff
    I give my girls oats frequently, I cook them first, so they get porridge, that would not hurt for a short time I don't think.

    i am no expert and I have never had such young chicks, so I hope someone else can be more specific Lisa, but I really don't think it would do them any harm, and I have also given them sunflower seeds and flax seeds but I have just given them direct.

    I do frequently give them vegetables, and depending on what it is I will cook them. They love them. Potatoeshave to be cooked as there is something toxic in the skins until they are cooked I am told but the girls love them too.

    Hope it helps you out.

    Jena.
     
  5. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

    7,735
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    Aug 17, 2008
    Larry, KS
    My Coop
    That cereal sounds fantastic, but you'll want to keep up the protein content, so mix in some scrambled eggs!

    I have a cross-beak that is exclusively eating whole grain brown rice, scrambled eggs, organic oatmeal (cooked with less water and allowed to cool, it can be cut into nice chunks so it doesn't stick to her beak), and a bit of heavy cream in the scrambled eggs once in a while.

    Dairy inhibits something in some strains of cocci and can be helpful in allowing them to build an immunity, from what I understand, so the yogurt thing is excellent, too!

    The eggs are the best- but you may go through a lot. I also fed my last batch some freezer-burnt salmon, baked with rice that I discovered hadn't been closed well- it had Miller Moths in it...mmmmmmmm!! Yummy!!
     
  6. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

    7,735
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    Aug 17, 2008
    Larry, KS
    My Coop
    Oh!! Don't forget, if you feed them coarse foods they aren't accustomed to eating, they'll need some grit in their systems- you might get some sand and rinse it super well for them if they haven't ever been out to forage for grit for their gizzards.

    They can choose which size and how much for themselves, but don't give them stuff they can't easily digest unless you offer grit to them.
     
  7. lisahaschickens

    lisahaschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2009
    Vancouver, WA
    thanks to everyone! Yes, they are 8 week sold now and have been free-ranging when I can be out with them pretty much every day since they were about 3-4 weeks old. It adds up to an hour or two a day. They also have grit in with them, but they mostly pick it up when foraging. The regular feed I give them does have large pieces so they do need grit anyway, so they're used to it. All is well.

    Thanks so much for the great advice! I think I will go for an extra-large serving of yogurt, and the cereal, cooked, with scrambled eggs added.... plus an extra-long free-ranging session so they can eat lots of grass and bugs!
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2009
  8. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

    7,735
    94
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    Aug 17, 2008
    Larry, KS
    My Coop
    Sounds fantastic! My guess is they'll be sad when you get more food!

    [​IMG]
     
  9. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    12,521
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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:You know what, I'm not sure it really matters much what exactly you give them. Clearly you have plenty of ingredients that are edible and will keep body and soul together for 30 hours; you *will* be changing their diet so I'd expect you *will* see some temporary blip in their growth rate (which is probably totally irrelevant since these are not high-performance broiler chicks) but that will be the case no matter WHAT combination of ingredients you use [​IMG]

    So, just feed 'em *something*, preferably things they can eat easily without grit and without choking, and IMHO they'll be FINE for a day or two [​IMG]

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat
     

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