Newbie Needs Help on Feeding Chickens

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by mom1776, Feb 3, 2016.

  1. mom1776

    mom1776 Out Of The Brooder

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    First, I'm brand new at doing this so derogatory commens please hold back. I just want to learn. I have 12 chickens...only one is a layer presently, the other 11 are almost ready to lay. They are several different breeds. I have out on a daily basis the following...1 large container of Dumor chick starter which I'm trying to get them to finish off and then I will discontinue. In the run I have 3 containers...1 with Dumor Scratch Grains, 1 with Dumor Layer crumbles and 1 with Dumor Layer Pellets. You guys have already helped me so much so please be kind. If I'm doing it wrong, tell me so I can take care of these ladies wisely. I do occasionally give them mealy worms and have bowls out of grit and oysters shells. I give them daily greens, scraps and I have planted and grow forage for them in lighted trays which I learned from here and they love it. Tell me where I should make changes. The chick starter is only out there to finish off the bag. Also, I saw mentioned about giving cat food for protein??
     
  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    There really is no need for that many types of food.
    Scratch grains should be used as treats.
    You could use an all flock type food that is around 20% protein to feed everyone. Then offer the oyster shell and grit free choice like you are doing.
    Greens, scraps and meal worms are fine, as well as the fodder, but all good things in moderation. General rule is treats not to exceed 10-15% of diet.
    You may want to use 2 feeders that way everyone has a chance to feed. (So one feeder is not dominated by the higher ups).
    Cat food is not necessary. It can be used if you feel you need more protein in their diet like when they are molting.

    A good quality poultry feed should provide all the nutrients and protein needed.
    If you want to "switch" to an all flock, go ahead an finish feeding what you have and then start introducing the "new" food as the other starts running out.

    This is what I feed my mixed flock and they love it.
    Just My Opinion.
    Good Luck[​IMG]
     
  3. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    *2

    Here goes a re-type of a message that i thought i had posted.

    It seems from your post that you have experienced less than positive feedback / responses to your posts in the past.

    The whole premise and ethos of being a member of BYC is to learn and to share / help out fellow members and derogatory or negative posts should never enter into the equation. I am truly sorry if this has been the case. If you have found a particular post less than supportive, you can click the red flag and report that particular member and / or go to their profile and block them.

    I hope that you find the vast majority of members to be supportive and helpful (and sometimes amusing [​IMG]).

    All the best
    CT
     
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  4. mom1776

    mom1776 Out Of The Brooder

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    Charleston, SC
    thank you so much for taking the time to help me. I had a feeling I was overdoing but I was going by suggestions by people at the stores that probably didn't have the experience but were trying to help. Would you be allowed to tell me the name of a brand and type feed you would suggest? I have been purchasing my supplies from Tractor Supply as I'm not familiar with other feed outlets in our area. I am learning so much from the experiences of others on this forum. I give my chicks daily greens, tomatoes and/or fodder....is this too much also? Thanks again for taking the time to help me with answers.
     
  5. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    This is what I use. I find it at Tractor Supply as well.
    It doesn't have to be this exact product, but I like the higher protein. Yes, I give mine daily fruits and vegetables, grasses, clovers etc. and a little scratch feed or sunflower seeds as well.
    I generally limit corn because it is least protein and doesn't have the nutritional value like, say Black Oil sunflower seeds. Fruits, veggies, grasses, fodder have vitamins/minerals that are beneficial.
    http://www.purinamills.com/chicken-feed/products/flock-raiser/

    Just my opinion[​IMG]
     
  6. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    you are most welcome! Maybe if you go to your state thread you may get more info the on the feeds that are available locally. I live in Kenya, so I'm not in a position to advise. Giving greens etc is ok, but only a small amount, as Wyorp Rock suggested. If you chickens free range, then its not necessary at all as feeds provide a balanced diet. As you can see from Wyorp Rock's recent post, there are very few set rules when it comes to keeping chickens and we all do things differently. Bottom line is to glean what you can and do what you think suits you and your flock the best.

    Good luck
    CT
     
  7. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Here's the break-down on feeds, simplified.
    Scratch- not a feed, but a supplement. It's something to toss in the run to give the birds something to 'scratch' around for. Most chickens go crazy for scratch grains, so it's really useful for training purposes.

    Starter- usually a finely ground feed with a high protein content to fuel young chicks' growth and feather development. Available in medicated (to help prevent coccidia outbreaks) and un-medicated.

    Grower/all flock/flock raiser- usually a slightly lower protein content than starter. Appropriate to feed to all chickens, at all stages of life. Good for flocks with birds that are at different stages and flocks that free range or get treats/scraps frequently (daily).

    Layer- for actively laying birds only. Has just enough protein to support egg production, if it is the only source of nutrition, and added calcium for eggshells. Is not appropriate for young birds, roosters, or birds that aren't laying due to brooding or molting. Is not appropriate for active flocks that forage frequently. Is not appropriate for flocks that get treats, veggies, scratch, or other low protein goodies on a regular basis.
     
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  8. mom1776

    mom1776 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 7, 2016
    Charleston, SC
    Wyorp Rock, CTKen, Junebuggena.........many thanks for all your valuable info on feed. I have some changes to make. My 11 are just before laying and one additional one who is older is already laying. I can't free range them because of 3 dogs I have that want to make them dinner. I have a 10 foot run and use wheat straw for them. The run is attached to a nice walk in coop so I have them plenty protected. I saw mention that you could get info from people in your area.....that would make it region specific...how do you do that? Again, thanks to all of you...you have taken time from your busy schedules to give me valuable info that I will start using today.
     
  9. AlHawk

    AlHawk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    As a fellow "newbie", I've found this place full of information (sometimes too much to process). I hope you continue with positive experiences.

    Your local group will be listed by STATE here: https://www.backyardchickens.com/f/26/where-am-i-where-are-you

    Also, you may get more "local" help if you put your city/state in your Profile Location. Many look at that before/when responding.

    Good Luck
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016
    1 person likes this.
  10. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    You are more than welcome! Thankfully AlHawk has chimed in with the info about seeing who your BYC neighbours are.

    All the best
    CT
     

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