Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Our Fermented Feed Setup

Fermenting Chicken Feed

If you've had chickens for any length of time I'm sure that at some point you've run into links about fermenting your chickens feed.
The why, how and benefits will make you really want to.
However the set up, time and dedication... not so much.

Photo is of my ladies enjoying their 3rd morning of fermented feed.
Let me tell you right now, its true they adore it.
(Also please ignore the ugly pan in the background I used their distraction with the food to clean it and fill it.)

I went ahead and started fermenting my feed when I was finally able to find some cheap containers - namely, sand buckets from Shopko on sale for .99 cents each!

I already had the plastic plates that fit perfectly on the top of the buckets, keeping MOST of the air in, bugs out but allowing gas to escape as needed - perfect for fermenting!
Notice the post-its?
They have a heart, flower, star & cross, also they are numbered 1-4.
I will need a 4 bucket system in the winter as it takes longer to ferment in the cold.
In the summer so far I am using a 3 bucket system and it works fine.

My mix for 11 hens is 2 Cups laying mash & 1 Cup scratch.

Add filtered water (we have reverse osmosis - a must for living in Magna)
to roughly an inch above the grain.
After two days of fermenting the feed, you can pour the left over water (normally a cup or so) into the new fermented feed to get it fermenting faster.
Stir it a few times a day.

I use a fine mesh spoon to draw the grain out so that it won't be a puddle and I can re-add the water into the new feed.

So far this mix seems to be working perfectly for my ladies - once all 11 are laying I will tweak it as needed.
I've seen some recipes only use whole grains, I've read where they only use mash.
I'm doing a mix because I happen to have both.

Top reasons for me to start this?
To many mice seem to be eating what my ladies were tossing onto the ground.
I'd much rather my ladies actually eat their food, than other animals - especially dirty animals.
They eat this food so QUICK!
Nothing is left on the ground!
In time I might only do two cups and give my ladies their scratch in the evenings, as that helps with egg production but again that will be once all my hens are laying.

Fermenting Chicken Feed links:

My favorite with Mash
What Containers

Chicken Chick

More on why & how

No comments:

Post a Comment