Friday, August 20, 2010
Your basic chicken diet consists of proteins, carbs, greens and some calcium...in the natural world it's Insects, Seeds/Grains and Leafy stuff like grass....On a free range farm its Insects, Soy or Milk supply the protein and calcium (and Meats from dinner scraps), Seed from the land, and harvested grains such as Corn or Oats, and they free range on fresh grass, fruits, berries and leaves as they peck around the farm. Which is also important, because the chicken will peck and eat small amounts of pebbles and sand that are collected in the Gizzard, to help grind the seed before digestion.
I would like to finish this off by reminding people that I am not an expert on chicken nutrition, nor should you use this as a guide. There are plenty of resources out there to help you fully understand the feeding cycles you should have for your chickens. This is simply a gathering of the information that is freshly being researched by me right now. And as revelations hit me, I will be posting them here. There are many schools of thought, and some chicken farmers go to extremes to provide truly 'organic' meat and eggs like making their own feed mix for a particular climate or season, or replacing water with milk to produce thicker egg shells etc.
I know what some of you are thinking....if chickens eat anything, and basic elements of food are cheaper, why don't you mix your own feed for the chickens and go fully organic? This is a very complex adventure, as it requires learning the Dairyman's Square rule, and also having enough chickens to keep this bulk feed on hand before it goes stale, which all feed does. I assume that would be a topic for another post, many months from now.
Posted by Axman at 2:16 PM