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What to do....

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by BradyK, Dec 13, 2016.

  1. BradyK

    BradyK Chirping

    Jan 15, 2016
    I have five hens. Well two hens (Olive Egger and white crested Polish) and three 14 week old pullets (buff orp, barred rock and North Carolina Blue).

    I am a wildlife rehabber so I always have a ton of vegetables to feed various animals and chop veggies each morning.

    I chop up two dinner sized plates full of veggies kale, cabbage, sweet potato, some grapes you name it, a ton of things all different each day (all chicken approved. No avocado peel or seed etc.) every morning for the five chickens.

    I don't know if they are getting enough of their feed because I am doing this.

    Does everyone feed things like that every day? Or do you let them only have their feed only with occasional treats?

    I just don't see them eating feed very often.

    Any input surely appreciated :) .

  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    IMHO, you're displacing the complete feed with things that, while nutritious, aren't complete for chickens. It would be better if you added some animal protein to the diet. Chickens aren't vegetarians. They will always opt for treats first.
    I feed all our table scraps which include meat and fish but it doesn't displace very much feed because there are always at least 50 chickens here.

    The things you are giving are very low on protein. I'm assuming you're feeding an 18% grower ration. (I hope and pray you aren't feeding layer to 14 week old birds)
    Lets assume those veggies and fruits are 5% protein at best and 50% of their intake is your treats. The end result is that they're getting about 11% protein. That's way too low for anything but roosters.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2016
  3. BradyK

    BradyK Chirping

    Jan 15, 2016
    I am feeding grower only to all five due to my 14 week olds being out in the group. I also am offering Oyster shell to the two hens in a separate container. That is exactly what I was afraid of. I have talked to people that throw scraps out everyday so I just recently got in the habit of throwing the veggies out every morning. Then it dawned on me I don't see as much feed being eaten...
    I will discontinue the veggies or only give now and then as a treat. Thank goodness I haven't been doing this for too long. I hope I haven't hurt them in any way with less protein. Thanks so much for the input.
  4. jaybud

    jaybud Chirping

    May 25, 2016
    Tehachapi, Ca
    I would try the purina flock grower raiser brand of feed. It has 20 percent protein in it which is vital to health and eggs production. Supplement oyster shells in a small dish set aside from the feed. Good for the hens who are laying to help with egg production. Lastly, don't forget about the scratch feeds, particularly those that have black oil sunflower seeds which helps promote feather growth and when there molting. It's okay to feed ur birds the veggies but make it more of a treat and mix it up with some meal worms. During the colder months oats and cracked corn help the birds produce necessary energy. Cheeerios tend to be my favorite choice for a treat. Any questions let me know
  5. To much for sure......

    5% of daily ration......1 tablespoon per Bird a day, if that.?....Once a week is better.......Chickens have complex dietary needs in order to remain healthy.....

  6. BradyK

    BradyK Chirping

    Jan 15, 2016
    Thanks so much everyone. I will back off that veggie routine and let them eat their grower food and only give veggies on the occasion
    1 person likes this.

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