The hens are feeding me well, how do I feed them well, 4 hens one Rooster

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by John Henry Jr, Dec 31, 2014.

  1. John Henry Jr

    John Henry Jr In the Brooder

    Dec 31, 2014
    As a very recent chicken raiser I have a host of questions. I usually learn by the seat of my britches, but these concerns are vital for my chicks.

    Don's ask me what kind they are, they were given to me but this rooster (the third in less than one year) :-( is black and silver. Jolly Ol' Fella. Hens seem to love being around him as they stick close and he clucks endlessly.

    So to the question (The Readers' Digest Condensed Version) much "mash" do I feed them daily? I'm giving them laying pellets, and cracked corn and A. either crush up their egg shells and add it to the food or B. buy some Oyster shell crush. Should I be feeding them anything else?

    I have other questions too....John Henry Jr is keeping the hen's backs looking like Telly Savalis! (minus the lolli pop) He's rough on the Ol Gals but they're givin' me four big jumbo brown eggs/day so someone's happy! Good sex? What!? Is it normal for him to keep their backs featherless? Looks odd! Doesn't seem "normal".

    Thanx, any help is welcome! I just want them to be healthy and happy! Their eggs are roll-yer-eyes-in-their-sockets-good!
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    You don't have enough hens. About 10 per rooster is a better ratio. You could separate him and just give him weekly conjugal visits.

    Don't put the egg shells or oyster shell in the feed. Layer feed is already 4% calcium and adding either of those items is too much. In fact, 4% calcium is way too much for a rooster.

    Chicken feed should make up about 90-95% of their total intake unless you're a poultry nutritionist.
    Corn is only about 10% protein which will lower the total protein intake if you're giving very much.

    Chicken feed is a complete feed with all nutrients in the correct ratio chickens are known to need. Nothing else is needed.

    If you have non-laying birds (i.e. rooster, chicks) it's better to feed a grower feed and put the oyster shell in a separate container for the hens building egg shells.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
  3. Julia62

    Julia62 Songster

    Jun 18, 2014
    Reno, NV
    Can't offer anything regarding the roo as I don't have one, but I feed layer pellets & oyster shell as their standard feed (always available to them) but for treats I give them these options (not every day, but 3-4 times a week I alternate them):

    ground beef, egg, & broccoli (cooked, it's what I give my dogs as well)
    watermelon (summer)
    greek yogurt (occasionally, not often)
    veggies like squash, cauliflower, broccoli (although they mostly love the meat!)

    On cold mornings like now I mix beef, broccoli, oats, and raisins, warmed up and give it to them as the hop out of the coop. They love it!
  4. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Songster

    Jun 10, 2014
    How old is the roo? He may calm down a bit as he gets older. Or he may just be a terror.

    The whole X hens to 1 rooster thing really depends on the rooster. Some roosters will make 10:1 living torment for hens, and some are fine 1:1.
  5. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    If one has bareback hens, the ratio is off.
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    Nov 7, 2012
    The only thing I can add to what CC said, is that your girls would benefit from some hen saddles. you can do a thread search, and find some to buy, or you can make your own if you are handy with a sewing machine. What happened to the other 2 roosters? However, especially in the winter months, IMO your flock would benefit from added protein. While layer or any of the other blends are designed to be a complete feed, IMO, feed companies cut corners where they can, and design their feeds with the minimal amount of nutrient to "get the job done".

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