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Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by josh, Apr 2, 2009.
What to feed chickens for protein?
Chicks will be fine on just chick starter, why do you think they need more protein?
Because someone said more protein will help them lay better. They are not laying worth a crap.
I get large crickets from the pet store when I want to give mine protein.
I've read that layers need a lower percentage of protein and too much protein can actually be bad for them. This is only from reading, not experience. Are your birds getting a whole, balanced diet and good light and space, etc?
Wait, this is confusing. Is the question about chicks (babies/youngsters) or adult laying chickens?
For some additional protein, we've given them some scraps consisting of either a hot dog or even a left over pork steak.
But the most effective we've found is low carb pasta. We bought a bunch some time ago (it as discounted to 10 cents/box) and were disgusted after the first box. We hung on to it and I was looking at the nutrition facts last week and it was 46% protein (26g per serving x 4 servings per box / total package weight of 226g).
Layer pellets are 16% protein and the fish pond pellets (which I've heard is great for raising laying production) is 30% protein.
The 46% protein low carb pasta is much higher and our hens LOVE it. We cook it and run cool water over it so its not too hot. I guess they think its worms because they do the Chicken Olympics for it (40 yard dash, wrestling and hurdle jumping).
Since we started giving it to them about every 3rd day, they've been laying machines
Lack of protein shouldn't affect laying, unless you are not feeding a balanced feed. Layer feeds are formulated to have everything a hen needs, except for oyster shell, which should be fed free choice. THere are lots of reasons why your girls may not be laying well....they could be in molt, something could be bothering them during the day (predator?) If you can give us more details, maybe we can help you figure it out.
How old are your birds and what are you currently feeding them?