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Protein in Chicken Feed...An Observation!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Chef JimmyJ, Jul 18, 2019.

  1. Chef JimmyJ

    Chef JimmyJ Songster

    Researching Chicken feed and the recommended Nutritional needs of Chickens, the Percentage of Protein is the most discussed and highly debated. In every thread one or more members will advise, " You must feed Chicks X percent Protein. From 8 to 16 Weeks old, you must feed Y percent Protein. For 20 weeks and up, feed Z percent Protein." Many times there is no Explanation just Numbers you should follow.
    So the inevitable, WHY is asked and you get everything from," That what the Commercial Feed Manufacturers spent $,$$$,$$$ to determine was best. " To, " The Guy I got my Chickens from said to feed this..." It seems not even the Commercial Guys can agree! One companies Chicken Starter is 20% Protein and the next 24%, with a third company at 18%. The folks feeding 18% will warn the folks feeding 24%, that It's Too Much Protein and the Chicks will get Liver Damage! Or with older birds, too much protein will cause Gout. Just when you read it all and determine what Diminishing percentages of Protein you are gonna feed your flock over the next year...The ALL FLOCK folks chime in! " I don't mess with all that BS, I been feeding a straight 20% All Flock, from day one until death or Freezer Camp! "
    We know the MINIMUM Protein each age group needs as this truly was extensively researched by Commercial Growers and Feed Companies. But Honestly, is there an Agricultural University study on, How much Protein is Too Much? There must be but I'm having a hard time finding it.There is plenty of repeating what was read in another thread or off site.
    Along these lines of how much is too much, With the exception of Winter Feed that you decide upon...
    Unless you keep your Chickens locked up in the Coop and/or Run, all Spring, Summer and Fall...
    The Percentage of PROTEIN you feed, becomes less critical.
    Chickens that get to Free Range, for more than a few minutes, or those in Tractors, are Stuffing themselves on every HIGH PROTEIN, Insect, Grub, Worm, Slug, Frog, Snake, and Mouse they can catch. If one Chicken Scores a Juicy Morsel, She better swallow fast or the ensuing chase and fight can make Men's Hockey look like a Little Girls Tea Party! Short of a bad days hunt, add in the shear assortment of High Protein, Grasses, Legumes, Weeds, Seeds, Clover, Dandelion and other Flowers, and the average Chickens DAILY Protein intake can soar to what? 30-40-50% or More! If consuming more than 24% Protein is Deadly...How is it Free Range and Tractor Raised Chickens are even Alive? The Percentage Protein Mash, Crumbles or Pellets that are to be had back in the Coop or Run becomes less important.
    If the feed chosen is of good quality and provides the remaining Essential Nutrients, pick the Protein level YOU are comfortable feeding and enjoy the Chickens.
    We ALL were Newbies here once. We came to Learn from those that now have the knowledge and experience to Teach. There is tons of enthusiasm mixed with shear Terror that we are doing things wrong and what's best for our new birds.
    BYC can be the Greatest source of learning on the Net...IF...You offer Friendly Advice with why you chose what you do and leave all the, Arguing to the Other Chicken Sites...JJ
  2. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

    Feb 24, 2013
    Natrona County, Wyoming
    This indicates that chickens can have up to 70% protein before it causes kidney disease.


    Most worry about the protein levels but the essential nutrients are every bit as important (if not more so) than the protein level.
  3. Texas Kiki

    Texas Kiki TwatterSpotter

    Jul 31, 2015
    Houston, TX
    My Coop
  4. Cryss

    Cryss Free Ranging

    Nov 12, 2017
    Northwest New Jersey
    Good thread.:thumbsup
  5. Chef JimmyJ

    Chef JimmyJ Songster

    Thank You! That is what I was looking for. Kind of makes the whole discussion, ummm, Arguments about feeding Too Much Protein...MOOT!
    Short of a Steady Diet of MOOSE or BEARDED SEAL, 80 and 83% Protein per 100 grams respectively, even many of the bad, bad Treats we feed covers Protein requirements...JJ
  6. chickens really

    chickens really Crazy Call Duck Momma

    Yes..Everyone needs to provide balanced nutrition and it all depends on how a person manages their flocks. What I feed and do isn't always gonna work for the next person.
    mixedUPturk, R2elk and Susan Dye like this.
  7. Cryss

    Cryss Free Ranging

    Nov 12, 2017
    Northwest New Jersey

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