WILD BIRD FEED

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Harleychicks, Jan 18, 2016.

  1. Harleychicks

    Harleychicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am thinking of feeding my flock by both free range and bird seed,has anyone done this and will it be a bad idea for 20 week old chicks?
     
  2. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    No actual feed?
    Wild bird seed is not formulated to meet the needs of poultry. It's very high calorie, which isn't really a good thing for chickens. Free ranging is a good way to reduce your feed costs, as long as your flock has access to a wide variety of forage, but you should still have feed available for them.
     
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Let It Snow Premium Member

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    I use bird seed as a treat, but I would always provide a high quality ration, which contains higher protein, my birds free range in the summer and they will consume half as much as during the winter, a chicken is always going to choose free range first than ration, you don't want deficiencies, and your production will suffer without proper feed.
     
  4. Harleychicks

    Harleychicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    cool ,I think I'll go with a mix of seeds and wild feed I'm trying to get them as natural as I can,staying away from pre-made feeds ,I like the organic seeds and bugs they find in the woods where they forage.The bright yellow yokes and happy chickens make us happy.
     
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    The problem with 'natural' is the possible lack of minerals and/or vitamins and/or amino acids.
    You could learn what these essential elements are and find a 'natural' source for them.

    They may be fine with the diet you propose...but will probably not be as healthy or productive.

    Wonders, is 'wild bird food' a 'natural' thing?
     
  6. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    The thing to keep in mind is that wild bird seed is not intended to be a primary source of nutrition. It's a calorie boost. Unless you have a huge variety of forage available to the flock year-round, you need to make sure their needs are getting met with a nutritionally balanced feed.
     
  7. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    The thing is, there is no real "natural diet" for chicken and the closest that your going to get to a "natural diet" for them is something like a pre-made feed. I say this because there are no wild chickens, they are a man made buy crossing and hybridizing at least two types of jungle fowl for our sport and needs.
     
  8. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    "All natural" means wild jungle fowl in SE Asian forest/ jungles. Small wild birds laying maybe 30 eggs per year. Domestic chickens need a balanced ration or they are malnourished and unproductive, not to mention unwell. Making a balanced ration for a small flock is neither easy or inexpensive, and doesn't include wild songbird seed mixes. Mary
     
  9. Harleychicks

    Harleychicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thanks for the input gang.
    and now for something totally different,,,,,,,, If i'm not looking to have eggs turn into chicks do I really need a rooster? Seems 'straight run' means 50/50 mix of birds.
     
  10. Soylent Chick

    Soylent Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You do not need a rooster if you don't want chicks.
     
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