What To Feed Chickens
What To Feed Chickens
Anyone who plans on keeping chickens must have a proper food regimen throughout their lives. The food to use changes throughout their life stages. This straightforward video explains which kind of feed to use and when.
From hatch, from chicks, day old, up until about six to eight weeks depending on the breed, you're looking at a nice chick crumb. Then, from six to eight weeks again, depending on the breed, you move on to readers pellets that have got everything they possibly need in it. Now, from about sixteen to eighteen weeks, you need to put your girls onto layers pellets.
Now, with the high breed girls, your laying chickens, it's very important not to put them onto the layers pellets too soon. You don't want your girls laying too early, their bodies aren't ready for it. Now, all this, I feed ad lib, which means it's available to the girls all the time.
They help their selves whenever they feel like it. They're not overly greedy on it, and the reason I do it is because their food intake is very weather dependent. On hot days, in the summer, they don't eat as much.
They're out there foraging for bugs and greens and all sorts, whereas in the winter, or when the weather dips, they eat far more to keep warm. So, feed your chickens ad lib, it works for me. They're not overly greedy.
And another good tip is to hang your feeders. Hang them about five inches off the ground so that they're mobile and the girls can't scratch and waste things, and in turn, attract rodents. And, as an afternoon scratch, I give mixed corn which is really good for them.
It warms them up at night in the winter, but more importantly, throw it on the floor and let them scratch for it. It's their entertainment. It's going to keep them occupied and hopefully, they'll fill up on that, and go to bed with a nice, full crop, which will keep them warm over the night.
The other thing that chickens need available all the time is mixed grit. It's a mixture of flint grit and oyster shell. Now, the flint grit is used internally to grind all the corn up, because chickens haven't got teeth, so it's very important.
It can prevent crop impactions. The oyster shell they take further down and they dissolve it and take and absorb the calcium which they use for their egg shells. Now, if they have, if they don't have enough calcium in their diet, they can take it from their bones which can make their bones very thin.
And that's what to feed chickens. This is just one of many tips derived from my book, The Essential Guide to Choosing and Keeping Happy, Healthy Hens. .