Raising my own feed. Calling all who raise there own feed!!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Backyard Bob, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. Backyard Bob

    Backyard Bob Chillin' With My Peeps

    279
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    Mar 1, 2013
    Oklahoma
    I have done a lot of research.

    I have decided to plant some corn, millet, Milo, and maybe turnips. I have pleenty of blackberry bushes around! And I do mean plenty!!

    My question is, do any of yall raise some of your own feed? Do you have any tips for me? Does it save you some money? What should I do for correct nutrients and protein?

    I am also considering.
    I am considering starting up a small meal worm farm. Do you have any tips for me? Would it be okay if they were kept in a shed outside? What temperatures do they need?

    Thank you for all of your help! i really do appreciate it!
     
  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    If you give them too much fruit it causes the runs. So pace yourself with giving the berries to them (give them some but not a huge pile). Or make a lot of jam! :)

    You can place the berries in the freezer on a cookie sheet until frozen, then remove them and put them in ziplock bags (gallon size). That way when you take them out of the bag they are individually frozen, not all one big frozen mass of berries. You can at any time make jam from these after thawing, using a good canning recipe. Speaking from personal experience here (I canned up some blueberries that had been frozen when I ran out of blackberries).

    From what I have read, corn and milo are similar in nutrition
    http://www.asi.ksu.edu/p.aspx?tabindex=567&tabid=1065

    You might want to round things out with some wheat, too. http://www.ca.uky.edu/smallflocks/feed_ingredients/grains.html

    They need a consistent source of protein as part of their daily diet- you can include some leftover milk if you have dairy animals, meat scraps, roasted soybeans, (I see you are looking into mealworms but cannot comment since I only feed the dried ones as a treat) etc.

    Good for you for looking after your flock's food!! [​IMG]

    If you are in the Pac NW around here they usually grow soft white wheat I have been told (I mention that because of the blackberry mention you gave):
    http://cru.cahe.wsu.edu/CEPublications/EM022E/EM022E.pdf
    this is a long pdf- 18 pages from wash. state univ.
     
  3. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Oh and the wild birds will be after your millet ASAP!

    You can turn the chickens into the yard and they will collect it themselves if you want. That's what I did.
     
  4. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Last edited: Mar 8, 2013
  5. Backyard Bob

    Backyard Bob Chillin' With My Peeps

    279
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    93
    Mar 1, 2013
    Oklahoma
    My chickens are going to be free ranged at about 15 weeks old. It older. Have to do some research on that.

    Do you know what I should mix? I have also heard flax and alfalfa are good.

    I can do the berrys! I might freeze alot to feed some in the winter. If I put free choice wheat, free choice corn, and free choice millet. All seperate, would the chickens eat how much of each they need? I'm new to the growing my own feed for chickens.

    I will read up on the mealworms more. Thank you so much for your help!
     
  6. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Flax is easy to grow- I've done it. The chickens' eggs will taste bad if you give too many- I would stay in the 5% of total feed range or less, myself. They are 20% protein I think I remember.

    Alfalfa hay is excellent. They LOVE the leaves from it. But it made me soooo itchy I couldn't stand it. So I bought alfalfa meal and they refused to eat it.

    I wouldn't give them free choice corn. I'd do a mix. I aim for 15% protein for my layers with my mix. I give (not grown myself):

    1/3 organic chick starter comprised of roasted soy and corn only
    2/3 of this mix (varies):
    rolled barley
    rolled oats
    millet
    wheat
    organic cracked corn
    black oil sunflower seeds
    split peas

    oyster shell and grit
    You can feed whole oats, whole barley, whole corn- but it really does make it easier on their bodies to have some of the feed ground up/rolled. I have found that in the years I skipped soy and tried to make do with other seeds for protein that their weight gain and laying wasn't so good.

    You are welcome! I hope this helps.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2013
  7. Backyard Bob

    Backyard Bob Chillin' With My Peeps

    279
    4
    93
    Mar 1, 2013
    Oklahoma
    Thank you! Ill read up more on this tomorrow! You have helped me out tremendously.
     
  8. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    You are welcome! Here is an additional page:
    http://www.ca.uky.edu/smallflocks/feed_ingredients/proteins.html
    make sure you don't use blood meal or that sort of thing intended for fertilizer- everything MUST be food-grade

    another link
    http://www.lionsgrip.com/chickens.html

    http://www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/livestock/poultry/bba01s20.html
    http://www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/livestock/poultry/bba01s21.html
    http://www.backyardpoultrymag.com/issues/1/1-4/Harvey_Ussery.html
    http://www.motherearthnews.com/Sustainable-Farming/Grow-Poultry-Feed-What-Chickens-Eat.aspx
    These are links that I really like- if you are interested they are here for you!
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2013
  9. Backyard Bob

    Backyard Bob Chillin' With My Peeps

    279
    4
    93
    Mar 1, 2013
    Oklahoma
    I will check them all out! Thank you!
     

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