As the price of eggs skyrockets everyone is starting backyard chicken flocks. Many people have found this year that commercial feed had drastically reduced their chickens laying, in many cases chickens have stopped producing entirely. One great solution for this is to make your own chicken feed.
Making your own chicken feed is not as difficult as it may seem. With a few simple ingredients, you can create a healthy and balanced feed that will keep your chickens happy and healthy. In this post, we’ll go over the basics of chicken nutrition and show you how to make your own feed with a few simple ingredients.
What you need to make homemade chicken feed
Chickens love grains and they make up the majority of their diet to provide your chickens with carbohydrates. Grains like corn, wheat, and barley provide the carbohydrates that chickens need for energy. You can use whatever grains are readily available in your area.
Chickens require protein to grow and maintain their health. Sources of protein for chickens include soybeans, peas, and alfalfa meal. Chickens will eat meat scraps including chicken and cooked eggs though you can not easily add this to your homemade chicken feed it does make a great supplementation.
Fat is an important part of a chicken’s diet, as it provides them with energy and helps them absorb some vitamins. Good sources of fat for chickens include vegetable oil and flaxseed. When making a dry feed that you can easily store stick with flax seed and other high oil-producing seeds like sunflower seeds to help get fat in their diet.
Vitamins and Minerals
Chickens require certain vitamins and minerals to stay healthy. Some of the most important include calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D. To ensure that your chickens are getting all the essential vitamins and minerals they need, you can add things like crushed eggshells for calcium and bone meal for phosphorus.
Making Your Own Chicken Feed
Making your own chicken feed is simple and straightforward. Here’s how to do it:
Gather everything you need
To save money look for the ingredients you choose in bulk. Many feed stores will have things like dried corn, while local Amish stores can often be the best place for deals on everyday grains like wheatberries and barley.
Keep an eye out for sales on things that you can add to your feed when you are shopping so you can continue to add variety to your chicken feed.
Mix your ingredients
Once you have all your ingredients together, it’s time to mix them together. Start by mixing your grains, protein sources, and fat together in a large container.
Then, add your vitamins and mineral supplementation and other small ingredients and mix everything together well bearing in mind that smaller ingredients will fall to the bottom so they should be added for the last mix to help keep it even.
Store your feed
Once your feed is mixed, it’s time to store it. You can store your feed in airtight containers to keep it fresh. Make sure to label your containers with the date so you know when you made the feed and when it’s time to make a fresh batch.
5-gallon buckets with twist lids are a great way to store chicken feed. You can also find pet food containers that work well for this as well.
Making your own chicken feed is easier than you think and in the end, it can be a great way to save money on chicken feed. If nothing else for those that are seeing a drop in egg production it may just be the trick you need to get the food your family needs in these trying times.