Feed and Water
By Belinda Grundling and Jessica Lewis
Feed bin containing poultry feed
- It is important to check feed daily and containers used for feed should be cleaned completely at the beginning of each week.
- The feed given to poultry needs to meet their growing needs and stage of life.
- Red Hen is a good balanced feed that has a variety of grain. This or equivalent feed is recommended.
- Poultry are usually fed pellets, crumbles and a variety of seeds or mash.
- Poultry can be fed by using grain feeders or simply by attaching a feed and water container to their cages.
- Feed can be stored in feed bins and under a roof to prevent spoilage.
- The way protein is supplied in the chooks feed is by including:
- Sunflower Meal
- Soybean Meal
- Meat Meal.
- During the early brooding and rearing period there is a high demand for protein for body growth and development.
- When the chickens increase their age there is also an increased demand for energy, warmth and activity.
- During the chickens laying period their requirements for protein are decreasing.
The main five feed requirements for poultry are:
Carbohydrates are supplied by grains such as:
- Fats are not usually added to poultry diets except for meat birds.
- Minerals are needed in poultry diets for egg production and growth.
- Vitamins are needed if the poultry bird is housed away from sunlight.
- The most important vitamins for poultry are vitamin A, B2 and D3.
- Vitamins can be added to feed or mixed daily in their drinking water.
- Layer hens need calcium to produce a hard eggshell.
- Poultry drinking water needs to be clean and fresh, checked daily.
- Dewormers, antibiotics and vitamins can be given through their drinking water if required.
- Ducks can be given small ponds to swim in.