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 Post subject: G'day and chicken feed
PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:00 pm 
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Hatchling
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Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:35 pm
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More of a g'day post but i do have a question to kick things off too.

I live in Western Victoria, grew up on a farm and now my wife, son and i have just moved from town to a place on a couple acres outside of town.

Slowly getting things together, got my chicken coop up and running a month or so ago with a bit of a mixed flock. Ive always loved the heritage breeds over egg pumping ISAbrowns and currently have two rhode island red girls and a rooster, and one brown leghorn. Got them from my brother still on the farm, his mate breeds a few stud birds.

Currently have some plymouth rock eggs in an incubator and will likely get another couple of leghorns one day. Our leghorn produces beautiful deep orange yolks and they're big yolk to white ratio which I quite like. The plymouth rocks I've chosen due to their quiet nature for my son to grow up with and their cold hardiness.

I really enjoy growing my own produce and would rather see happy animals producing when they can rather than focussing on what we can get out of them. This leads on to my question regarding tucker.

I went to petstock today and was a bit overwhelmed by the choice available ended up buying red hen premium layer feed because it was free of hormones which may be a gimmick but is something i like. Is this a good option or is there better feed out there for them? I'm trying to let them run free range during the day but the bloody magpies give them hell and they're too scared to venture out.

Appreciate any advice.

Cheers


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:21 pm 
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Old Mother Goose
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Joined: Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:15 pm
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Location: ACT area
Hi Gramps and welcome.
Lauke/Red Hen products are a good quality feed. Ideally your birds will have a layer feed as about 80% o their diet which can be supplemented with treats and free range. Be aware that the quality of free range depends on season and what is growing.
A good rule of thumb when selecting chook feed is that there must be a nutrition panel on the bag and ideally a minimum protein level of 15%. The better products although more expensive are often more economical to feed. If there is no nutrition panel on the bag, assume that the product is only suitable as a treat - good for hand feeding/making friends.
If you are planning on breeding it's best to use a Breeder feed - Lauke Showbird Breeder is my pref (don't think Pet Stock carries it) - try the local produce place.
Keep in mind that when breeding - What goes in affects what comes out. The Breeder rations carry nutrients to enhance fertility and embryo health.
btw - there are no hormones added to poultry feed in Aust. A good quality feed should have a nutrient pre mix included.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:28 pm 
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Old Mother Goose
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Location: ACT area
This is a good general guide to feed types (although it is brand specific)
http://www.lauckemills.com.au/sites/def ... %20WEB.pdf


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2018 12:59 pm 
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Hatchling
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Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:35 pm
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Thanks guys, appreciate the advice. I'll keep feeding them the same stuff. Now just need to figure out what to do about these maggies so they can actually get out and forage!


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2018 9:50 pm 
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Old Mother Goose
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Location: ACT area
Get a treadle feeder - front flap is better than top flap for wild bird security.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:40 pm 
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Hatchling
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sue55 wrote:
Get a treadle feeder - front flap is better than top flap for wild bird security.


My issue isn't with magpies stealing food, they just sit in the trees above the coop and swoop the chooks whenever they try to venture out. Poor girls are too scared to leave.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2018 11:41 pm 
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Great Game
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Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2009 12:53 pm
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Location: West of Bendigo
Welcome G-g and good luck with the magpies. Forum is full of people extolling their virtues - chase hawks away this, keep crows away that etc. My experience with them (central Vic) is the opposite, they are an egg stealing chicken killing pain, always one on watch for free range birds they can harass, and call up twenty more. They can fly sideways through a shed door just cracked open four inches, and attack chicks in brooders through the cages. They can gang up on an adult Silkie or any less robust/active bird and kill it. The twee things like bird scarers don't work, they are protected so can't take any action against them (fair enough) so can only be vigilant and know what they are up to.

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