Raising chickens has become a popular hobby among both rural and urban households in the past few years, and ensuring that your chickens receive the right food is essential to keeping them healthy. A well-fed chicken is a healthy chicken, and knowing what to feed chickens is the first step toward proper nutrition.
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What to Feed Chickens
There are various types of feed available for chickens, and the importance of providing your chickens with a balanced diet for optimal health. With the right combination of grains, vegetables, and proteins, you can ensure a long and healthy life for your chickens.
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Types of Commerical Feed for Chickens
There are several different commercial feed choices with different purposes for each one.
Chick Starter – up to 6 weeks. 22-24% protein
Chicken Grower – 6-22 weeks. 16-18% protein
Chicken Lay Feed – 22+ weeks. 16-18% protein. This is what your chickens NEED to be on to be laying eggs for you.
Some of the specifics differ. For example, one manufacturer may have you switch to grower/finisher at a different number of weeks, a suggestion that may differ from another supplier. Always follow the directions of your specific feed and check with your feed supplier or store when in doubt.
Growing Feed for Chickens
Chickens love leafy greens – especially tender ones like chard, frost-bitten kale, spinach, and the leaves of many specialty greens like amaranth, and orach.
You can grow fodder. This is a simple thing to keep growing all the top if you get some sprouting trays or make your own sprouting trays. They love it!
How Often Should I Feed My Chickens?
Your chickens should have a constant supply of food throughout the day. Chickens will eat when they need it and should go to bed with a full crop as they need lots of food to produce eggs. A fully grown chicken will typically eat about 120 grams of layers pellets a day.
We let our chickens eat whenever they want by having a feeder full of feed at all times. Our chickens are not meat birds and are not going to eat themselves to death.
What to Feed Chickens for Organic Eggs?
You can buy organic feed for your flock! It is going to cost more money of course but you can 100% do that if that is something you are interested in doing.