Protein Content

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by rsweet, Mar 4, 2016.

  1. rsweet

    rsweet Out Of The Brooder

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    Is 16% or 22% better for layers?
    Thanks
     
  2. Bridebeliever

    Bridebeliever Chillin' With My Peeps

  3. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    It depends. Do you feed lots of treats and extras? Are they molting? Are they breeding birds? If yes to any of those questions then get the higher protein feed.
    If you don't feed treats or extras, and they are laying eggs for eating only, then get the lower protein feed.
     
  4. Bridebeliever

    Bridebeliever Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks for answering junebuggena! I always chose middle of the road because I really didn't know for sure. Mine free range all day every day too. I probably can reduce my protein amount? I throw about 2 cups worth of scratch everyday for them (11 chickens).
     
  5. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Free ranging and scratch qualify as extras. Keep them on the higher protein feed. 2 cups of scratch is way too much for 11. It's a treat or boredom buster, not a feed.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. rsweet

    rsweet Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 24, 2014
    Tijeras, New Mexico
    Is there any down side to the higher protein? Other than cost.
     
  7. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    No, no downsides to more protein. With a higher protein feed, you reduce your chances for feather picking, and egg eating, the molting process goes faster, you have more wiggle room in terms of feeding treats, and you get better overall production rates.
    It's worth the few more dollars, in my opinion.
     
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    There is no downside unless you get ridiculous. As with anything too much of a good thing is not necessarily a good thing. I’ve seen where feeding hens over 30% protein can lead to avian gout. 30% is really high. Of course, it’s not what is in one bite, it’s how many grams of protein they eat in the entire day, and even that is over several days.

    What nutrients yours get from foraging will depend on the quality of the forage. They will get some benefit if their only forage is a manicured lawn all of the same type of grass, but if they can get to an area with various weeds and different grasses, some of which go to seed, now you are talking!
     
  9. Bridebeliever

    Bridebeliever Chillin' With My Peeps

    I think mine have a forage smorgasbord. We live in a forest area. They are always digging through the forest leaves and finding gobs of sprouts and worms galore. Plus there's lawn area. My feed consumption has gone WAY done since our weather has changed. They forage from 8am-5pm daily. They are only consuming about 5 cups of feed per 11 chickens per day. (My guess, I haven't measured it.)
     
  10. Sutremaine

    Sutremaine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Why would this make a difference?
     

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