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Lets talk feed

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by myhubbycallsmechickeemama, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. myhubbycallsmechickeemama

    myhubbycallsmechickeemama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, I have 44 three week old CX (will be 4 weeks on Saturday). They have been on Nutrena NatureWise 22% meatbird feed and today I went to the feed store to get pig food for my DIL and talked to him about broiler feed. He has his own recipe and says that he has had very good feedback with it. Stupid me didn't even think to ask about the percent of protein and when I got them home I pulled a label and saw that it was 18% protein and said to feed from 5 weeks to butcher. Good Lord!!! I hate when I'm a space case about things that I know better. Will I be okay feeding them 18% from now to finish or should I go buy a couple bags of the 22%? The cost difference is Nutrena $20 per 50# and the mill mix is 20.50 for 80#.

    Also, do you use animal protein in your feed? Pro's and con's?

    Thank you in advance!!
     
  2. Denninmi

    Denninmi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Personally, I only raised the one batch, and only to 5 and 6 weeks, but I fed them 28% gamebird starter the entire time. I know that was too much protein, but I wanted them to grow fast.

    22% sounds about right. 18% sounds too low. I bet you could augment the protein in it with some soy meal (which I believe is 45% protein).

    I am not afraid of animal products, but then again, I'm the guy that feeds leftover chicken to his chickens. I can understand the concern over issues like mad cow, but I don't believe it is a major issue when done correctly from safe sources.

    But for those that want all vegetable feed sources, I know it can be done.
     
  3. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

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    WHen looking at protein, also check the cost of the protein. If a 50# bag is 10% protein, just for an example, and it costs 15$ per bag then the protein costs: .1 x 50# = 5 #, 15$/5# = $3/# protein; if a 50# bag of 20% protein costs $17, then $17/10# prot = $1.70/# protein.

    It's probably worth the cost of growing the birds to have the higher protein feed, which they will use every bit of , for growth; and save the lower protein, the finisher, for the end IF you can store it out of the heat and humidity.

    Sorry you had a bit of a mix up at the feed store; it's one I have done several times trying to keep all these rations from different companies straight. Seems no 2 are the same-- a marketing thing. Ugh!!
     
  4. myhubbycallsmechickeemama

    myhubbycallsmechickeemama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I know that you can drop them down to 16 to 18% protein at 5 weeks but do you think it will be detrimental to them to have a lower protein for that one week? The really crappy thing is that I have to drive 80 miles to get feed. Bad thing about small town living I guess.

    The feed I bought was made with pork protein. The feed guy said that it was for the lysine and something else that I can't remember.[​IMG] I have been feeding an all natural feed up until now.
     
  5. DaughterOfEve

    DaughterOfEve Chillin' With My Peeps

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    44 meaties will burn through your feed pretty quickly. I would not sweat a week different. How much to they weigh? If they are already getting big then I would not worry. I am switching mine to broiler because they are huge. 4 pounds already at 4 weeks. They need to be a healthy weight for fair (another 5 weeks out).
     
  6. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Could you augment with something readily available and cheap? Hardboiled eggs, cooked peas?
     
  7. Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay

    Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay Chillin' With My Peeps

    An animals Amino Acid requirement drops as it matures. So I think you will be in good shape with the 18% Crude Protein ration at this point.

    In many of the commercial swine farms the ration provided to the birds is changed EVERY DAY using a proprotioner system. The nutritionists in the large commercial systems know the specific requirements for lysine, methionine, and other essential amino acids so precisely they can make the daily adjustments and maintain performance.

    The nutritionists for commercial farms do not care about Crude Protein, the only people in the poultry industry that worry about Crude Protein are the hobby growers/BYCers. The commercial nutritionists worry about the needs for specific Amino Acids.

    Don't worry about using the 18% Crude Protein ration, it will probably be less than they need today and way more than they require when the birds are butchered.

    Jim
     
  8. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:What were your dressed weights at 5-6 weeks?
     
  9. myhubbycallsmechickeemama

    myhubbycallsmechickeemama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for the info, Jim!! [​IMG]
     
  10. Denninmi

    Denninmi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:What were your dressed weights at 5-6 weeks?

    2.74 lbs, no skin, but with neck and giblets at just under 5 weeks, and then 3.42 lbs each at just under 6 weeks, without skin but with neck and giblets.

    I honestly thought they should have been bigger than that, but I was still happy with it. I went through not quite 3 50lb bags of feed total. It seemed to me like they should have eaten more than they did. They had access to it from sunrise to sunup. I blame the hot weather, it seems like they mostly just layed around and panted, and I think they would have grown and eaten more had it been cooler. But, my net cost was like $1.32 a lb, so I'm happy with this first trial balloon.
     

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