Winter Feed Options

akostka1988

Chirping
May 15, 2020
135
135
93
Alton, ME
So. I’ve had my chickens since March. I had 4 egg laying females and now I’m down to 2. Fox got my big girl and my favorite blonde girl 😭. And now I’m stuck with 2 who just aren’t doing a great job. I’m lucky if I get 2 eggs a day and when I do the yolks taste a bit like dirt. Now I’m just gonna assume it’s due to the lack of variety in their diet instead of blaming them completely. We live in central Maine and it’s basically winter here so we have no bugs and virtually no plant life like the milkweed they devoured all summer. I feed them a mix of egg layer and mixed flock pellets because I have a guinea and I want to make sure he’s healthy too. I occasionally treat them with stuff like stale crackers, hard boiled and mashed eggs, carrots, etc. The treats aren’t a regular thing they never have been because I’ve been out of work (thanks COVID 🙄) the entire time I've had them. I honestly don’t have the budget to make a meal from scratch or anything but I can definitely supplement their food if needed. Any ideas? I was never a fan of yolks to begin with so the dirt taste isn’t helping lol
 

NatJ

Free Ranging
Mar 20, 2017
8,226
17,341
706
USA
I occasionally treat them with stuff like stale crackers, hard boiled and mashed eggs, carrots, etc. The treats aren’t a regular thing they never have been because I’ve been out of work (thanks COVID 🙄) the entire time I've had them.

I do not buy treats for chickens. They get the things I don't want to eat--the shell of the egg, the piece of food I accidentally dropped on the floor, the crumbs from the bottom of the cracker package, the peels of the carrots, and so forth.

I feed them a mix of egg layer and mixed flock pellets because I have a guinea and I want to make sure he’s healthy too.

If the mixed flock pellets say they are designed for all kinds of birds, I suggest just feeding that to all three birds, and skip the layer feed entirely after the current bag runs out. Do make sure there is a dish of oyster shell as a source of calcium. (Eggshells can also be a good source of calcium, but each hen will need 2-3 of them to make a single new egg. If the only eggshells are from their own eggs, the hens will need oyster shell as well.)

Commercial chicken food usually works fine, so your bad-tasting eggs have me thoroughly puzzled. The food doesn't seem spoiled or moldy, does it? I suppose you could try a different brand next time you have to buy more, and see if that makes a difference.
 

akostka1988

Chirping
May 15, 2020
135
135
93
Alton, ME
I do not buy treats for chickens. They get the things I don't want to eat--the shell of the egg, the piece of food I accidentally dropped on the floor, the crumbs from the bottom of the cracker package, the peels of the carrots, and so forth.



If the mixed flock pellets say they are designed for all kinds of birds, I suggest just feeding that to all three birds, and skip the layer feed entirely after the current bag runs out. Do make sure there is a dish of oyster shell as a source of calcium. (Eggshells can also be a good source of calcium, but each hen will need 2-3 of them to make a single new egg. If the only eggshells are from their own eggs, the hens will need oyster shell as well.)

Commercial chicken food usually works fine, so your bad-tasting eggs have me thoroughly puzzled. The food doesn't seem spoiled or moldy, does it? I suppose you could try a different brand next time you have to buy more, and see if that makes a difference.
No the food has been totally normal and the dirty egg taste has gone away it only seemed to happen with half a dozen of the eggs so I’m not really sure what happened. 🤷‍♀️ I always eat the oldest eggs first but when I say “oldest” I mean the latest egg is from the previous week. I never have more than a dozen and since I only have 2 egg layers I think I go thru them at a quick enough pace to say they didn’t somehow turn
 

NatJ

Free Ranging
Mar 20, 2017
8,226
17,341
706
USA
the food has been totally normal and the dirty egg taste has gone away it only seemed to happen with half a dozen of the eggs so I’m not really sure what happened.

Thanks for the update!
I'm glad the eggs taste fine again, although I still have no idea what caused the off-taste in the first place. :confused:
 

akostka1988

Chirping
May 15, 2020
135
135
93
Alton, ME
Thanks for the update!
I'm glad the eggs taste fine again, although I still have no idea what caused the off-taste in the first place. :confused:
Ya the only thing I can think of is stress because it happened right after I lost half my flock to what I assume was predators
 

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