Increasing Chicken Self Sufficiency


In the Brooder
8 Years
May 22, 2011
Hey all! Im new here, Ive already posted in the new member section. I mainly do chickens for self sufficiency. Im wanting to bring the chickens off the grid by not buying commercial feeds and not having to buy new birds.

Right now, I have a patch of field corn big enough to feed them over the winter. I have a freshly plowed spot for sunflowers, I just need to sow them if this rain will stop. My birds also free range constantly and I do have very rich range. I have two earthworm farms to feed them this winter. I also sprout wheat and alfalfa in the winter for them. Any ideas on increasing their alternative feedings?

I also have about 5 or 6 Buff Orpington hens in the flock for broodies. One did go broody and hatched out a bunch. Will her offspring be more likely to go broody? Im also planning on an incubator for next year............
Lentils and peas are another easy to grow source of good protein. Wheat and oats now and then. The more types of grain, grasses, vegetables, and meats they get when feeding naturally the better chance you have of meeting the nutritional requirements of the birds. If you have access to fish or fish meal these can also be excellent sources of protein for the birds.

For dependable mama hens the silkies are our favorite for hatching, brooding and defending her chicks.
Do you have fruit trees? Some people give them fresh fruit in the winter (mine love apples). I have read them some who hunt, or butcher their own livestock, will hang part of the carcass to encouage maggot gowth and they will eat those too. Mine love oats, you might try growing some of that too?
Sadly I havent got enough room for the small grains. However mine get all scraps (meat and veggies) they also have run over 20 apple trees and they get the rotted leftovers that fall off or are bad.

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