Where can I find the good stuff (chickie feed, that is)?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by boheme, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. boheme

    boheme Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 19, 2012
    When I got my chickies on Saturday I just got the starter feed that they had at Orscheln. There was one kind, it was medicated, and it is soy based. But a chick's gotta eat so I got it. Now, I know enough to know that I don't want to feed them soy based anything. Not sure where I fall on the medicated camp; I don't medicate myself or my kids, but I know what to do to build the immune system in humans. I don't know enough about chicks to make a truly educated decision on the preventative medication.

    Mostly, for now, I just need to find a source for a better starter feed. We do have a TSC in the next town and I will be going there today. Can somebody tell me what to look for there, or if there is another local source (or online) that I should check out. Certain brands? I do prefer organic (as I do with my own food) but non-soy is my priority.

    And uh...if anybody has any good resources for building the immune system for healthy chicks (such as the ACV and probiotic tips I've seen here) I'm all ears. :)

    Thanks!
     
  2. Leahs Mom

    Leahs Mom Chicken Obsessed

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    If you search online there are several producers of non-soy feed. Problem is the shipping cost! I'm not at home but if you need links I can post some from home later.

    I searched feed stores in my area of the country (Northern Indiana) and found a feed mill that will make feed to my specifications and they will formulate for correct protein levels, calcium levels, etc. Only problem was that I needed to buy a minimum of 300 lbs but I did find someone to share.

    Point is, look around in your area. You might find a true feed mill that will formulate for you. We were able to get organic but also had the choice of non-gmo only (but not organic).
     
  3. Leahs Mom

    Leahs Mom Chicken Obsessed

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    Oh... and check out the organic chickens group:
    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/OrganicChickens/

    You have to apply for membership and they usually reply with membership within 12 hours. That group is where I posted my request to find someone that might want to share feed and found a couple people in my area.
     
  4. boheme

    boheme Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 19, 2012
    Thank you for the yahoo group link! I applied so hopefully I'll be in soon.

    I'm a soon-to-be-ex-vegan (the ex part comes in when my girlies grow up and start laying) and we only eat whole foods and almost all organic foods. I just want to feed my birds like I feed my kids. I'll probably end up making feed for them from a recipe when they are bigger (I have access to the organic ingredients I will need through co-ops I belong to), but with tiny babies I just don't know enough specifics. My fall-back of "just add breastmilk" probably won't work here. :D
     
  5. featheredroots

    featheredroots Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use a handmade(organic, but it doesn't have to be) recipe from Greener Pastures Farm (recipe # 3) the only thing I changed was using kefir instead of plain milk, and adding some food grade DE. http://www.greenerpasturesfarm.com/ChickStarterRecipe.html

    It worked great for my first batch of chicks that I got from the breeder, but my second batch from a hatchery died. The general consensus was vitamin deficiency due to poor breeding. My new batch is also from a hatchery, so I'm adding molasses to the water(1/2 tbs to 1 qt water), and nutritional yeast. Right now I'm spinkling an eigth of a tsp over their hard cooked eggs, but will probably integrate a larger portion into their feed mix.
     
  6. Leahs Mom

    Leahs Mom Chicken Obsessed

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    How much molassis do you add to the water - and at what age?
     
  7. Leahs Mom

    Leahs Mom Chicken Obsessed

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    Duh...I just saw the amount in your post.
     
  8. featheredroots

    featheredroots Chillin' With My Peeps

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    LOl! I'm starting them right from the beginning this time. I only have one waterer so I made up the vinegar and garlic water then just poured about 1/2 cup of the molasses water in. I'm not sure they like it all too well, so if they don't warm up to it soon, I'll have to get a separate waterer for the molasses.
     
  9. boheme

    boheme Out Of The Brooder

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    I have most of the ingredients in my pantry for this recipe (as well as the molasses and nutritional yeast) so I will start putting this together right away. I think I will have to get millet, though, not sure I have any in the freezer.

    But the lentils and split peas, are they to be cooked or ground up or anything? I know she says that she used to grind them and stopped, but I can't imagine them being able to eat whole lentils and split peas. Of course, I've never really been around chickens so what do I know? :D

    I have raw goat's milk from a neighbor and raw human milk from myself, does it matter what I give? Such as, if we are out of goat would human be okay? I don't have local access to organic eggs, can I use eggs from my neighbor? They free-range some, eat some scraps, and some regular chicken feed.

    I think that is all for now.

    Oh! What about a probiotic in the milk? Since I don't have yogurt and I do want to protect them, is probiotic powder mixed with milk okay?

    Sorry for all the newbie questions, I just want to get this right!
     
  10. featheredroots

    featheredroots Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm fairly new to this chicken business too, and as you can see, not all my attempts were successful. The best we can do is ask questions, and then go with our instincts. [​IMG]

    At first I didn't grind anything, but the poor babes had a hard time eating it, even with grit( I use sand or aquarium grade substrate). For the wee ones I grind everyting as fine as I can, some things just don't break down well in my blender, and as they get older I leave more of the larger pieces in it. As for the peas and lentils, I use french lentils because they're already pretty small, and I break up the peas with a meat tenderizer or hammer before putting them into the blender. I don't cook any of it, but I don't think it would hurt to cook it either.

    I make my own kefir, so I don't know much about powdered probiotic, but I assume it would work just as well as yogurt, and either forms of milk should be just fine( I love the idea of using human milk). As far as the eggs go, your neighbor's eggs sound great, but in a pinch I've even used store bought free range.

    I hope I answered all your questions. If not, or if you think of any more, just let me know.

    Good luck! [​IMG]
     

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