Laying Pellets vs Wild Game 28% feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by dquarles74, Sep 18, 2012.

  1. dquarles74

    dquarles74 Out Of The Brooder

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    I bought a turkey and a huge bag of Wild Game feed 28% protein - I had one hen that just wouldn't lay for the last 3 months. THe guy at the feed store told me to feed her the game feed for a few weeks to see if the extra protein helped her. Well, long story short my turkey ran away and I was left with this feed. When I ran out of laying pellets i just started feeding all my hens the wild game feed. After all, they free range ALL day long... All the sudden I'm only getting 1-2 eggs per day now! From 6 laying age hens (I have 13 more who will be old enough next month) but their production is lower than it was during the hot summer months. It's been cooler weather (like in the 80's and 90's - in texas that's cooler) so i was expecting them to pick back up production..... So do laying pellets REALLY make that big a difference???
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2012
  2. dquarles74

    dquarles74 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 3, 2012
    Lufkin, Texas
    No reponse? Help a girl out :)
     
  3. barkinghills

    barkinghills Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Any chance they are hiding their eggs in secret nests while out ranging? I have had several do that. They can be extremely sneaky.
     
  4. dquarles74

    dquarles74 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 3, 2012
    Lufkin, Texas
    I thought about that and kept them locked up for 3 straight days until about 5pm and only let them out for an hour….. but maybe I'll lock them up for a week and see… I DID find one lone egg in my compost pile a few weeks ago.
     
  5. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

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    Locking them up or any change in their environment can make them stop laying also. So if you are locking them in, you have to give them time to adjust.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    To answer your question about the layer feed. There no way it makes that big difference in laying. Layer feed has extra calcium for stronger egg shell, not other difference from the other feeds. Well except for the protein levels, they have a narrower range from 16% to 22%.
    How about molt as a reason?
     
  7. 7L Farm

    7L Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    To much protein can harm your chickens. I would feed them lay pellets not GBS. I've fed mine GBS when they were molting to help grow their feathers back quicker but not for a daily feed.
    Its been hot here in Texas & the heat stesses the birds out. They use all their energy panting to keep cool which slows down egg production.
    Now, its cooling down but the days are getting shorter so this can slow down the egg production as well.
     
  8. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh and a change in feed can cause them to slow down too. Yes too much protein can be bad for them. Since yours free range, if they get a third of their food from pasture and what they find is at about 16% then the average protein level would be nearer to 24%. Of course what they find could be higher or lower in protein. If you feed any thing else, like scratch, it could lower it further.
     
  9. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    Many breeders have said they feed wild game 28% mixed with layer food. Maybe you could do that. In any event, the food alone couldn't have caused them to stop laying, it's more likely a combination of shorter days, the "stress" of having a different food, etc. Takes them a while to adjust.
     

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