What's the risk of moldy fermented feed?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by barred2rock, Jun 18, 2017.

  1. Due to a temp increase in & outside the chickens may have inadvertently eaten some mold in their fermented feed. They haven't eaten since in two days. Did I poison my chickens? Is there anything I can do for them? Currently they seems healthy besides not eating their feed. They are still eating insects and what not in their run.
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Got my Puppy

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    They would be sick or dead by now, so I would assume they are okay. Try a different feed, the taste could have put them off wanting to eat it. To me there's a fine line between fermented and moldy feed, I personally don't think it's worth the risk to feed it.
    drumstick diva likes this.
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years.

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Definitely agree with oldhenlikesdogs.
  4. Typically the fermenting process prevents mold and bad bacteria growth, so the risk is pretty low.
    lazy gardener likes this.
  5. The likely result of feeding moldy feed regardless whether it is fermented or not is a dead chicken.

    In my experience one must first add water to chicken feed, then let it sit for several days for the fermentation process to start. For chicken feed to mold it must first get wet, and wet feed is a sure way to end up with moldy chicken food. I must agree with drumstick diva and oldhenlikesdogs, fermented chicken feed is a huge, huge risk.

    Chickens use their craws or crops to hydrate and predigest every thing that they eat.
    Fermenting your chicken feed is like carrying coal to New Castle.
  6. Any reliable proof of that?
  7. You better let the billions of people that have been fermenting & eating fermented foods & drinks for thousands of years know that.

    Some of the common fermented foods & drinks (which I'm sure you too eat or drink) are:

    Beer, wine, bread, buttermilk, cheese, kombucha, miso, pickles, sauerkraut, sour cream, soy sauce, yogurt and kefir, to just name a few of the hundreds of fermented foods.
    eggbert420 and lazy gardener like this.
  8. Yeah, the fact you and I are here to talk about it.

    Anyway, I'm going asleep! :frow
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2017
  9. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    Nov 7, 2012
    Well stated. Fermented feed is cultured with beneficial bacteria and yeast. Those very organisms destroy any harmful organisms. I consider my flock to be far safer when they eat fermented feed. Consider this: I put out fermented feed. It sits in a warm feed trough for a good part of the day. If the weather is warmer, the culture continues to grow while it is sitting there waiting for the chickens to eat it. It is replaced every day. My neighbor feeds dry pellets to his flock. He puts out 20# of feed at a time in one of those galvanized gravity feeders. It rains. It's misty. It's humid. It's hot. Perhaps he simply dumps more feed in on top of the old. Under such circumstances, it's not unusual for some grey/green or black mold to develop in the bottom of that feeder. MY FF... never has mold. Fermentation has been used for thousands of years to preserve food, while improving the nutritional quality of that food. Also, when feeding dry feed, the birds eat from the feeder, but they also beak a lot out into the litter, where it sits and absorbs moisture until it gets moldy or stinky rancid, or attracts mice and rats. The birds spend a fair amount of time gleaning that spilled feed (which may very well be moldy) from the litter.
    ChickNanny13 and barred2rock like this.

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