So what's so bad about corn in the feed?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by jmc, Aug 11, 2010.

  1. jmc

    jmc Songster

    Jul 22, 2008
    South Central MA
    I hear that corn is lousy stuff to have in feed. period.
    I am NOT talking about scratch, but 'regular feed'. so why is this, what's wrong with it?
  2. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    I would say it is more a question of how much is in it. I think all mixed feeds have some of it in it. It is a sugar carbohydrate and provides energy to the birds. So this means it is not that bad. Plus you want it in winter. It produces more fat on the ducks body, which insulates them. I don't mind it being in my ducks food as a balanced mix. Scratch is a hole different story, that is almost like feeding sugar with no nutritional value to them.
  3. drdoolittle

    drdoolittle Songster

    Jul 30, 2010
    NE Indiana
    I don't think it's bad if added to feed, but wouldn't give it as the main source of nutrition alone. I sometimes mix about 25lbs. cracked corn with 50lbs. of the regular feed. It helps to stretch the feed, therefore saving money, and the animals like it-----you can do this with goat, chicken and duck feed. Hope nobody blasts me for this.......[​IMG]
  4. KansasKid

    KansasKid Songster

    Feb 7, 2010
    South East Kansas
    I agree with drdoolittle when it comes to mixing, for my Rouens that eat a ton i mixed a bag of waterfowl grower plus layer pellets plus chicken scratch so its all that i would usually feed just mixed in that way i know they are getting some of good stuff they like but also getting the layer pellets and grower. (Rouen eggs are huge [​IMG])
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2010
  5. ruralmom

    ruralmom Songster

    Aug 14, 2009
    NW Colorado
    Quick question, I have 4 grey calls, 6 west indie black bantum ducks, 4 welsh harlequins and they are all now about 3-4 months. I have had them on flock raiser feed with niacin, and a bit of ground corn. Well we have run out of flock raiser and I was wondering if I can feed them what I feed my 50 chickens. Their feed is ground corn, laying pellets, whole wheat, white millet and some black sunflower seeds. Any thoughts? Should I go with chicken scratch?
  6. drdoolittle

    drdoolittle Songster

    Jul 30, 2010
    NE Indiana
    I don't know if I would feed ducks chicken scratch----anyone? I would probably just feed them either grower/finisher, maybe layer pellets---again, I'm not sure about that----or try to get some waterfowl feed.
  7. Caprice_Acres

    Caprice_Acres Songster

    Jun 28, 2010
    I wouldn't use it to stretch grain, simply because at 9% protein it will drop your protein content and therefore drop production (IE, eggs, milk from goats, growth from goats) along with it.

    I have it in my mix. At the farmer's market last week, I had someone come looking for chickens fed a corn free diet. It is not the worst thing out there (most don't want soybeans in the diet), and I told him how unsure I was that I'd ever take corn out of the diet.

    I offer corn as the energy source as well as the 'hot' feed in wintertime. Both of which are necessary, IMO... They just don't get good, quick energy from other food sources.

    My mix has soybean meal, oats, corn, alfalfa meal, and a mineral mix, all finely ground and mixed well. It's an 18% mix and all the ducks and chickens get the same mix, except for broilers and turkeys which get the same mix, higher soybean content to get it to 25% protein. Layers get oyster shell on the side free choice. They also free range and in winter have access to hay from the goats. They seem to like it, I get good growth, and I've been very pleased with it.
  8. jmc

    jmc Songster

    Jul 22, 2008
    South Central MA
    well i got these incredible expanding anconas, and i swear its the corn in the feed. i'm giving them little feed at all now to see if the three or four fat girls can lose weight. 14 birds 15 weeks old are getting now a mere 33 oz. of food daily.
  9. Olive Hill

    Olive Hill Crowing

    Apr 19, 2009
    Corn is the junk food of the livestock world. It's a filler, largely nutritionally void and mostly comprised of "bad" carbs. It should be a minor part of any pre-mixed feed and using it to cut an already balanced diet (such as the commercial grains most BYCers use) is a bad idea. Not only will it significantly lower the protein content of the feed (note: these days 9% CP in corn is considered on the high side lots of times) -- which can lead to myriad health problems -- it also upsets the rest of the feed's nutritional profile as well. Cutting grain with corn to save money is like "cutting" a kid's broccoli and lean chicken dinner with kool-aid to reduce the grocery bill. Kool-aid might help fill up the tummy at dinner time, but it's full of sugar and compromising the nutrition the kid needs to grow and flourish.
  10. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    I don't give any corn to my ducks. Ok there is some in the feed mix. I don't use corn to stretch food, nor as treats. The sugar in it makes any duck fat and overweight. As some of the big commercial duck farms the raise ducks for out food chain. Anything to get them fat fast, and that is usually corn based. Corn may be good in cold winters for energy, but that is it. I give my ducks anything green for treats and they love it. They also get watermelon out of the fridge when it is hot, but that is full of water so no worry.

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