It sure seems like we've been blazing through the chicken feed lately. I kept track when I opened the last bag, and we are burning through 40 pounds of layer crumbles in 11 days.
I know they are big birds - heavy breed and all - but there are only ten hens, two roosters, and then the two little bantam hens. It seems like we should be able to get a little more mileage out of 40 pounds of layer feed. Fuel prices have dropped, grain prices too, but feed has not gone down yet. Any time now would be great!!
I admit, I've been lazy. I've fed them the bagged feed and whatever kitchen scraps I had to offer. It's time to get a little more involved in this process, so with the new bag of feed, I'm supplementing a little more. They will still get the stuff from the chicken bowl (the bowl we keep in the kitchen for peels, seeds and partially eaten PBJ sandwiches), but I'm going to do my best to do a little more.
Besides, they need the variety!
The first day I added some teeny, tiny carrots. I harvested all the carrots, but I can't peel them that little. They're hard to scrub too. So we'll supplement our chickens with them. I get to keep the quarter, though.
This pumpkin never did get orange, so I gave it to the girls (and boys) on day two. You didn't think that 2 adults and a child could eat 157 pounds of pumpkin all by themselves, did you?
Those pumpkin seeds are a good protein source, too.
That's the great thing about growing lots of winter squashes - we can feed them raw to our hens for a source of fresh food, vitamins, and something to break up those long winter bug-free days. Hm...I wonder if they'd like some fishing worms....
Day three was some chard that was awfully bitter for me, but they loved it! Then, this morning they got some 'clean out the fridge' leftovers - some bean-corn-tomato salad and part of a raw cabbage that was starting to yellow just a little.
I'll keep giving them some extras, and hopefully we can stretch this bag of feed for a few extra days.