What do you feed your flock? Best kind of food?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by <3 N.C Chicken Chick <3, Nov 18, 2011.

  1. <3 N.C Chicken Chick <3

    <3 N.C Chicken Chick <3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2011
    Jacksonville N.C
    At the TS Store there are quite an few brands of chicken feed. Which brand do you use, and why? [​IMG]
    scratch-
    layer pellets/ crumbles-
    grit-
    Would it be better to buy all in 1 mixed in chicken feed, from the feed and grain store?
    Thanks in advanced [​IMG]
     
  2. AinaWGSD

    AinaWGSD Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 2, 2010
    Sullivan, IL
    Ah, the never ending question. Just today I made my rounds of the local suppliers to compare prices and brands. Currently we feed a 16% layer crumble. There are 3 stores in town that sell chicken feed, a Rural King, a Farm and Fleet, and an independently owned Purina country store called Prarieland Feeds. Oddly enough, none of them carry the same brands. Farm and Fleet only has one brand, Rural King has two, and the feed store has two (although they have 3 or 4 varieties of Purina). We go with whichever one happens to be cheapest, which is usually the Agrimaster brand at Farm and Fleet, although when the store brand crumbles are on sale at Rural King they are usually the same price or cheaper and we will buy them if we happen to be in the area. The price for crumbles we buy usually works out to be about $0.25/lb (I have to compare price per pound instead of per bag to get an accurate price comparison because some brands or varieties come in 40lb bags while others come in 50lb bags). I haven't noticed a significant difference between the Agrimaster and Rural King brands as far as egg production and bird condition and switching back and forth between the two doesn't seem to have any noticeable effects either.

    The main reason we feed crumbles is because it is the type of feed most readily available (of the 3 stores, only 2 of them carry pellets and I think that for one of those 2 the pelleted variety is a recent addition since this spring/summer; none of the stores sell mash). But another significant reason is because one of our hens is a cross-beak and would not be able to pick up the pellets. So we have stuck with the crumbles so that she doesn't starve to death with a full bowl of food in front of her [​IMG] But she is one of the 3 hens we are culling this month, so once we don't have to worry about her being able to eat the food we will be switching to pellets as I feel there would be a lot less waste with pellets. And I can get Nutrena all flock 18% protein pellets at Rural King for $0.28/lb, which is pretty comparable to what we are paying now. My hens have free choice oyster shell anyway and if we hatch chicks next year the all flock pellets will be safe for them to eat (layer feed has too much calcium for chicks and can cause kidney damage).

    We also offer scratch as a treat, primarily in the winter (hardly used any at all this summer). Again, we go with whatever's cheapest or most convenient as there isn't a lot of difference in price/quality. We also offer grit free choice in an old hopper-style rabbit feeder because our soil is mostly clay. If you live somewhere with a coarse, sandy soil then you may or may not need to offer grit.
     
  3. Gullygarden

    Gullygarden Chillin' With My Peeps

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    organic lay crumble free choice, boss for treats, and most of the day foraging in the 164 foot perimeter run. Egg shells are nice and thick and the hens are healthy. Oh yes - scraps including yogurt most days.
    :)
     
  4. <3 N.C Chicken Chick <3

    <3 N.C Chicken Chick <3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 24, 2011
    Jacksonville N.C
    Cool. I didn't know that about the chicks! so your hens can eat flock raiser? My roo has been eating layers pellets as his main diet is this bad?
     

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