Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Paco, Jan 29, 2011.

  1. Paco

    Paco Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 6, 2010
    I just recieved about 60 bushells of wheat to feed my chickens, but I read somewhere that wheat swells in the crops of chickens and will kill them. Is that true ?
  2. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

    Jun 1, 2009
    Quote:Never herd that.
    Most all good grain nixes will have Wheat in it ant wheat is one of the best all round grains you can feed your chickens.

    Quote from Poultry Foods and Feeding...

    Wheat -
    I have always regarded wheat as the best
    staple grain food for poultry. In many countries maize
    (corn), rye, oats, and barley are chiefly used, as they
    are often cheaper than wheat. The value of wheat,
    however, is now more generally recognized, and, where
    egg production is the main object, it is undoubtedly of
    first importance.
    There are two main classes of wheat : the hard wheat
    with high nitrogen content, and the soft, starchy grains,
    generally a third lower in nitrogen. This point has not
    been discussed in any book on stock feeding which I
    have seen, and yet it is of manifest importance. A
    hard wheat with a gluten content of from 12 to 16%
    is a better flesh former and egg producer than is a soft,
    starchy wheat averaging from 8 to 10% and in many
    cases as low as 7% gluten.
    When wheat and its mill products, such as bran,
    pollard, and wheatmeal, form the main food of poultry,
    it is important to know its chemical composition. Tables
    such as are usually published can only serve as a very
    general guide ; what is required is accurate information
    as to local conditions and foods.
    Wheat is low in fat, compared with some other grains
    and seeds, and it is necessary to make up this deficiency.
    It is within the experience of most feeders that when
    laying fowls have been fed for a long period on an exclusive
    diet of wheat and its mill products, great benefit
    results, together with increased egg production, on
    a change to, or large addition to the food of, maize,
    which has a high fat content. This change is due to the
    more natural and more complete metabolism, owing to
    the restoration of the " fat " balance."'
    The carbohydrate content of wheat varies in proportion
    to the percentage of starch in the grain—soft wheat have
    a higher starch content than have the hard varieties.
    A rough-and-ready method of testing a wheat kernel
    is by biting or cutting it in half. If the grain is starchy
    the interior of the kernel will be soft, white and floury,
    while if of high gluten content the fracture will be short
    and the outer layers greyish crystalline, and the flour
    area comparatively small.
    The fiber content of wheat is low, and, as regards
    poultry feeding, may be treated as of comparatively
    little importance compared with such grains as barley
    and oats. The water content varies according to climate,
    and may in a dry climate average 10%, and in a moist
    climate up to 15 %, or more.

    1 person likes this.
  3. Organics North

    Organics North Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 30, 2009
    Wisconsin Northwoods
    I sprout wheat daily for my birds. I have never seen any swelling.
    If you are just introducing your birds to whole grains, be sure they have plenty of grit.
  4. Wild Trapper

    Wild Trapper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 1, 2011
    I give my chickens whole wheat with their scratch. I think it is better than corn in its whole state. My birds will eat whole corn, pick it right off the cob if I give it to them that way, but I bought feed wheat for them last fall and mix it in with their scratch, - treat. We have a large patch of wheat growing in the area where we had corn last summer. Plan to use some ourselves, but the chickens will probably get most of it. Soybeans - they don't seem to eat them whole very good, and as high in protein as they are, they probably shouldn't eat many.
  5. Paco

    Paco Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 6, 2010
    Ok thank you guys I'm glad to hear that I don't have to get rid of all this wheat. It was a generous donation from some of my egg customers.

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