Chicken and Fodder Update

I have been sprouting grains and growing fodder for our chickens and experimenting with different types of grains and also getting a system into place.

Eggsy, Annie and Candy foraging.


One month down the track and I've picked up a few ideas here and there and changed a few things.  I find I need to give something a go and then eventually I work out a system which works for us.

Wheat

Giving our chickens a variety of different grains exposes them to different nutrients and I'm sure varying tastes and textures too.  Coupled with roaming around the yard eating greens, worms and bugs as well as their pellets, eggshells, rice, veggies and porridge they have a varied diet.  I'm sure it is also a lot more interesting for them too.

Barley.

Sometimes they eat from a feeder, fodder and seeds spread out on the ground and then the best part where they can forage themselves and have the whole backyard. 

.....and sometimes Samson's water.


May need to teach Floss to stay away from Samson's bone though.  I looked out the window the other day to see Samson chewing on his bone with Floss pecking the other end.  All of a sudden he jumped up and gave her a very loud warning bark.  Fair enough.  

 
The types of grains I've used to grow fodder so far are barley, wheat and sunflower seeds.  I grow them either on their own or mix two grains together for something different.  

Barley and Sunflower sprouting.


Barley and Sunflower fodder.


Wheat and barley look and feel very similar however the sunflower seeds take longer to sprout and look different.  The sunflower seeds are their favourite.

Sunflower fodder.


The drawer system has been working really well.  I've drilled drainage holes in the top three drawers and the fourth catches excess water.  Each time I soak a new lot of grains I use at least 2 cups as that is a good amount to fill the drawer completely.  

So happy they all share the yard.

The girls will have on average a half drawer of fodder every second day.  I place it on the ground in their run along with their pellets first thing each morning before they roam the yard. 

Samson and the chickens share the yard and seem to have rules in place which they're all aware of.  It's been harder for Samson as he used to have the backyard to himself and now he needs to share.  They've worked it out.  The chickens and I have also developed a routine together and it just all works so well.  Love how everyone gets along.




  

6 comments

  1. You are so lucky that Samson is so good with the chooks. This afternoon Banjo chased a wild duck about 100 metres up to the front gate. I called him and he just kept chasing the duck. The pair of them do this a couple of times a week. The duck goes the whole way in front of the dog only flying about three feet from the ground. Perhaps he is trying to distract Banjo from his mate? I don't know, but it is like the duck is training Banjo to chase him. If the duck flew up into a tree or flew higher Banjo would loose interest.

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    1. Cheeky duck.
      When Samson was a young dog like Banjo I don't know how he would have been with chickens then. Too playful I think.
      I just love this unspoken agreement they seem to have.

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  2. Your animals look so healthy and happy. That's funny that the chicken wanted some of Samson's bone. It's wonderful that they all get along. One time my German Shepherd Carlie broke into the chicken coop and pulled some of the feathers out of one of my chicken's neck. I caught her just in time. She almost died of fright. Your chooks have a fantastic diet.

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    Replies
    1. Oh my how fortunate you caught her. The poor little chicken. I think I would have also got a big fright.

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  3. You certainly give your feathered girls some very healthy treats, it's a lot of work, but so worth it, knowing how much nutrition they are getting. I can't have chickens here for many reason-no grass, dogs and a cat that wouldn't tolerate them, no room, no time, blah blah blah. I love that you have been able to, not only have chickens, but really look after them. Have a lovely day.
    Fi

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