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Help chicken folks!

My ten year old chickens are still laying every day and one just hatched out four mystery chicks (we don’t have a rooster lol) They don’t like chicken feed so they eat very little of it. They free range usually but the hen with chicks is eating the chick starter with her chicks now. I feed them completely random scraps, bread, BOSS, whatever I have that they seem interested in trying.

You could always just give them some sardines or actual fish, or scrambled eggs. Mosey is much more scientific about chickens than I am (we know this about each other lol) so in a spot with limited choices I thought I’d mention the canned fish option. My mom gives her chickens a little ball of hamburger every day too. We’re the chicken weirdos.


:smiley: Una Milagro!
Poultry Immaculate Conception?
:thinking:Do the chicks resemble any neighborhood raptors?
Hen may like Bad Boyz :sunglasses:

Count me in the Weirdo Club.
Hens get morning oatmeal with plain yogurt.
BOSS AM treat.
PM treat is generic honey nut Cheerios.
And nearly every kitchen scrap goes to them.
Except onions. Do not need onion-flavored eggs (so I’ve read).
They also get the occasional rotisserie chicken carcass & it disappears :grimacing:

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That’s funny, I have 5 banty chicks from this spring so a few months old. They free range in the yard when we’re home and I have a big bag of generic honey nut cheerios that I throw to them in the evenings. lol

There must be a rooster around here somewhere with the neighbors, a black one since the hen is white and the chicks are all black. lol That was a big surprise, we knew she was broody but didn’t realize she knew what she was doing. lol

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Oh that’s great, I can find sardines, I buy them for my doggo too. I am reluctant feeding eggs because I’ve been told that could make them eat their own eggs in the nest

LOL they are some spoiled chicks for sure!

I accidentaly fed some dog kibble once and they loved it, I didn’t know they can be fed meat and dish, I’ll be less picky while setting aside their scrapes. One of the dogs always leaves a handful of kibble in her fish, so I can give it safely to my little raptors? I throw them away anyway because they are wet and after a couple of hours they stink

Chickens are omnivores, they can have any type of meat. They’ll eat each other in the right circumstances, they’re savage little things.
You can feed their eggs back, egg-eating is more of a problem of lacking protein in the diet or lacking access to water. A lot of people will boil and chop them first, or cook them another way - they can have the shells crunched up too. Sardines are fine, just don’t feed a huge amount of fish (that goes for fish meal too if you got it) because too much can make the eggs taste fishy. Dog food is fine in small amounts.

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Cat food tends to be higher in protein than dog food so that’s another option (in moderation of course).


Do y’all feeding kitchen scraps ever worry about sodium and sugars?

Newbie chicken owner. I feed my chickens a lot of fruit and vegetable scraps from the kitchen and the occasional egg shell scraps from hard boiling eggs.

But I’ve read mixed things about feeding them other table scraps.

I’m always trying to reduce excess food waste around here, especially since my composting endeavors have been ho hum.

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Yes, you should worry about salt a bit. Depends on how much spread over how many birds. I’ve read many say that cat food especially is also too salty for chickens to be fed much, as well as dog food, but others dispute that, so unsure really. I wouldn’t give them a bunch of ham, for instance, or other super salty foods in abundance.

I almost never feed mine stuff like veggie scraps or old bread, etc. But I do take them any sort of meaty carcass from cooking another bird or meaty bone, etc. And sometimes something like leftover spaghetti with meat sauce.

Granted, the chickens are my hobby, and I get a lot more serious about feed and deworming and such than most, which is perfectly fine. If I have scraps to give, they go to the layer pen and not my breeders. But I also grind and mix my own rations, so…a bit extra :laughing:

Thanks for the info Mosey!

Is there a reason you avoid them? I have heard they can fill up on too much low calorie, low protein stuff, but otherwise haven’t read too many negatives. I mainly feed them for enrichment, and to reduce the amount of food going in the trash.

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Mostly because I don’t produce much in the way of veggie scraps, slightly because I’m too lazy to make little piles of, say, carrot peelings and the like and actually walk them out to the coop. Partially because of the protein dilution effect on the overall ration. It’s not a negative thing to do, I just personally don’t much. Although it is recommended not to feed lettuce as it can give them loose stool.

For me, the chickens are livestock. Much-prized livestock, but not pets really per se. I do grow fond of certain ones, but I’m not one to give them little treats and the like much.

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I have fed cat food and hard boil and chop extra eggs/ with shells when I have them as a midday or evening snack, especially in Winter or when molting season his here.

Me too. I’ve got a small meal worm farm, another good protein source.

I also feed mine cat food in the winter and especially over a molt. They really like it; especially some canned with it on occasion.

Is there any research out there on the diet ratios of hens that free range in the midwest? I always leave scratch and pellets out but they mostly ignore it. Mine are out 12-16 hours a day in the summer, pecking away at all the things. In the winter they tend to eat a bit more of what I leave out for them and we supplement with all kinds of scraps. Mine have access to oyster shells and lay regularly.

A little update about my feathered friends! Thank to all your advices the quality of eggs have improved a lot. Only the black hen’s eggs still present the weird corpuscles, the other three produce perfect eggs and with a stronger shell. I increased the amount of hens’ food and found a new food with 16% of protein. I added oatmeal, crushed seashells and a handful of dog food twice a week

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