Mixing Cracked Corn and Feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by commonburrplantandco, Nov 14, 2017.

  1. commonburrplantandco

    commonburrplantandco In the Brooder

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    Hi BYC community!

    It's getting pretty chilly here in New England (dipping down to 20 degrees Fahrenheit during nights) and it's my first year having chickens, so naturally, I'm a bit worried about them. I read that feeding cracked corn to chickens will keep them warm so I was wondering if it would be okay to mix the cracked corn in with their feed (or should I provide it in a separate container?).

    Thanks!
     
    CapricornFarm likes this.
  2. peterlund

    peterlund Songster

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    Chickens wont care.... i toss handfuls of corn, and wild bjrd seed from tractor supply in their runs.
    20 degrees isn't cold for a chicken. They prefer cold over hot.
     
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  3. venymae

    venymae Prairie Wind

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    I wouldn't. Chickens will be just fine in the cold as long as you have good ventilation and wind shelter. Good luck!
     
  4. Roosters Rest2

    Roosters Rest2 Chirping

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    yea they were raising chickens long before electricity :welcome
     
  5. Diamond Dan

    Diamond Dan Chirping

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    Olive oil herbs and spices keep them at 350 degrees
     
  6. CapricornFarm

    CapricornFarm Happy Father's day! Premium Member

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    Hello, i would feed it separately because they might start billing out food to search for scratch. Not a good habit. Good luck with your birds and welcome to the group.
     
  7. Naser

    Naser Songster

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    Give them mixed corn or wheat in the evening just before they go to roost, that will help keeping them warm over night, don't mix it with feed, they will through away the feed and eat the mixed corn
     
    branga likes this.
  8. While it is true that corn will supply energy, whole grain or un-cracked corn is a much better way to feed corn. The contents of the grain has not been exposed to the atmosphere and the waste associated with cracking is eliminated. I have witnessed week old chicks spending an hour or more trying every bill hold imaginable before they succeeded in scarfing down an intact kernel of corn and in almost 70 years with chickens I have never seen any damage befall the peep from eating whole kernel or shelled corn.

    In fact the wast or broken corn kernels left behind in barges and ships hulls is often swept up and added to cracked corn.
     
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  9. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

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    Corn protein: 7.5% (from an internet search)
    Blended poultry feed: 16 - 20% protein (depending on what you buy

    The important consideration here is: Are the birds getting all of their nutrient needs met if you are supplementing with corn? How much corn are they eating compared to their blended feed?

    I know that when I eat a carbo load, or any other meal for that matter in the winter, I feel colder b/c my vascular system diverts blood from extremeties to the gut to transport the nutrients from the meal. So... my winter regimen includes: good balanced feed, free choice all day long, sprouted grains to make up for the deficit in free range. I do want to see my birds with well rounded crops before they go to roost, but I do not give them a low nutrient value grain to make that happen.
     
  10. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Free Ranging Premium Member

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    I would feed a balanced chicken at feed all times. They need 16-20% protein for at least 90% of their diet. For an occasional separate treat I feed a good 5 way scratch grain mix just enough to let everyone have some for 5-10 minutes. It is about 7-8% protein. It is not true that they will stay warmer on more corn in the winter. Corn or scratch should only be a treat, and given separately. They will eat scratch or corn first anytime over a balanced chicken feed, but it is not a complete feed.
     
    KikisGirls and lazy gardener like this.

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