August 4, 2012 at 9:07 pm #257187
Well actually, the chook pellets are high protein layer pellets. My chooks don’t seem to eat them at all. They love the wheat I give them in the afternoon. I’m wondering whether it matters that I only feed my chooks wheat? Two out of the 3 are laying now. Are pellets essential?August 4, 2012 at 10:05 pm #526733
Mine are very happy on a feed called “coarse mash” which is a dry mix of grains and pellets.You do need to have a complete feed , which includes enough protein.August 4, 2012 at 10:20 pm #526734AnonymousInactive
I would never feed my chooks just wheat. It is lacking in so many
nutrients. It is a treat food, not a staple. If you stop giving it to
them, they’ll start eating the pellets. Or start making them real food
such as a meat or fish protein (I sometimes give mine leftovers, or
canned tuna, salmon or sardines), greens, veges…August 5, 2012 at 12:37 am #526735smurfyMember
I give my chooks coarse layer mash too, and it also has pellets in it…..they chooks won’t eat them but the wild birds will!!! They just don’t like the pellets.
Complete food is essential, especially foraging for grubs, greenery eyc,August 5, 2012 at 10:40 am #526736AnonymousGuest
we say don’t feed any of your animals/chooks those pellets, feed only good fodder or grain, those chemical concoction are out of the same batch they make for commercial chookers and lot feeders.
my suggestion would be put those pellets into the garden where they will do less harm.
sensible chooks you have there.
we’ve always done well with a course grain mash and have a tray of shell grit for them to access to keep egg shells strong.
further to calliecat, we free ranged ours on the grassed areas after about 1 or 2 o’clock after they had finished laying.
oh! early on when they hadn’t started laying i just walked past their cage flicking the blade of the axe and saying things about finger lickin’ good, they started laying hey lol.
lenAugust 5, 2012 at 11:12 am #526737calliecatParticipant
must say I’m with Len on this one, I never fed those pellets, only ever course grain mix with molasses, mine did get the run of the yard as well
but never those laying pelletsAugust 5, 2012 at 1:25 pm #526738
….perhaps the extra bits in my coarse mash with molasses are not your usual pellets? Must investigate.I have never used/fancied the standard pellets either.
For grit, definitely wash your egg shells and dry in a slow oven to make them easy to crush up small and feed in a separate container.You will probably need more than the shells for grit – the chooks eat them up very quickly!! You can buy oyster shell grit from produce stores,again feed in a separate container.August 6, 2012 at 11:25 am #526739
Wow, first of all, thanks for all the replies. :cheer: I forgot to press the Subscribe button (is it possible to set things to automatically subscribe to any threads you start or contribute to?) so had initially assumed there were no replies. :blush:
Anyway, these replies are why I appreciate the folks on this forum: I’ve never even thought pellets weren’t the bees knees. I just assumed they were exactly what chooks needed.
My chooks (3 girls and 1 boy at present; 4 more girls coming…) have about 1/3 of an acre to free range in. We think it’s a pretty cool setup for them.
A lot of you mentioned this “coarse grain mash”. Can anyone give more info on that? What exactly is it? Sorry for my ignorance but I want to do the best by my laying friends. 😆
Oh, and thanks for all the replies so far!August 6, 2012 at 11:30 am #526740MiaowzenMember
I’m going to try mash next. My girls don’t like the pellets and one of them runs around stressed and makes a lot of noise. She always calms down when there’s food around other than pellets.August 7, 2012 at 2:15 am #526741casalentaMember
I haven’t used chook pellets for years either, and I feed them a local grain mix called ‘chook blend’ which is a mixture of grains plus corn, sunflower seeds, etc. so all natural but high protein. Wheat alone doesn’t have enough protein.
As well as the chook blend my hens get a bran and pollard mash (with crushed egg shells as grit) plus food scraps, weeds, and vegetables. They’re also free ranging.
I don’t give them laying pellets because I don’t know what’s in laying pellets, and because the girls would rather eat ball bearings and axle grease than pellets. They’re also expensive, but I wouldn’t give them pellets even if they were cheap.August 7, 2012 at 4:11 am #526742
“Coarse mash” contains whole and cracked grains selected from sorghum, wheat,cracked corn,layer protein vitamin and mineral pellets,sunflower seeds , calgrit and molasses.That is the one I buy anyway , Riverina Red Label Coarse layer mash. $13.70 for 20kg and chooks eat roughly 90gm to 140gm per chook per day according to age from 20 weeks to 60 weeks.My girls live longer than that and just keep eating!!August 7, 2012 at 10:59 am #526743
“Coarse mash” contains whole and cracked grains selected from sorghum, wheat,cracked corn,layer protein vitamin and mineral pellets,sunflower seeds , calgrit and molasses.That is the one I buy anyway , Riverina Red Label Coarse layer mash. $13.70 for 20kg and chooks eat roughly 90gm to 140gm per chook per day according to age from 20 weeks to 60 weeks.My girls live longer than that and just keep eating!!
Ah, this is fantastic. Thanks for such a detailed response. Sounds like I can buy it made up, just need to find where. I was thinking it might be a giant homemade bin of the stuff.
Thanks folks for all your help. :cheer:August 7, 2012 at 2:15 pm #526744casalentaMember
chareaves post=347436 wrote: Sounds like I can buy it made up, just need to find where.
Do you have a fodder shop nearby? I get my mixed grain from a local fodder shop.August 7, 2012 at 2:57 pm #526745
Any Ag/animal/fodder produce store will have it , probably a different brand.Organic is available as well , more expensive of course. The actual contents , and sometimes price, will vary a liitle depending on what grain is in season or currently available to the manufacturer.My current price is about the cheapest it gets.
I wouldn’t advise trying to mix your own – the balance of nutrients is very important and you wouldn’t be likely to get it right as a novice, let alone find all the ingredients.
I plop the whole 20kg bag straight from my car boot , in the bag, into a plastic rubbish bin with a clip lid which I then trolley up to the chook pens.Open the bag carefully with a sharp knife through the sewing so that the bag is in good nick for later use as a manure collecting bag for example.Then find a container that will hold approximately the right amount for your number of birds and put in a feeder , I use the hanging plastic ones.
You will know if you are feeding the right amount because it will be mostly gone by next feed time , or by roost time if you feed early in the morning.If it goes much sooner than that -and presuming wild birds and vermin are not helping themselves – you may need to give more , or vice versa , a lot left – give less.My chooks definitely do not like sorghum however!! Throw it around in a spare patch of ground if yours won’t eat it and it will grow for the wild birds.
There will usually be grit left in the feeder , just tip it out right there onto the ground – you still need to give additional grit, dried crushed egg shells or purchased along with the mash , in a separate container.
A few extra kitchen scraps/greens with mash feed is OK but don’t over do that or you could upset the nutritional balance.
Having said all that – chooks are tough cookies , you won’t kill them with a few mistakes!! 🙂August 7, 2012 at 3:14 pm #526746DinyMember
My chickens don’t like pellets either. Yesterday I found a termite nest and dug up a piece, wow, they did like that!
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.