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What do you feed your chickens in the winter?

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  • #21
    I hate winter with my chickens. Miss the eggs, DESPISE buying them from the grocery store. I know I could put them under lights but I don't want to, figure they can use the break. I feed them layer mash or pellets all year round. Every time we clean the fridge, they get it. Any leftovers from dinner we're not saving, they get it. Thanksgiving dinner at his parents house, I overheard DH telling his mom he would take a chicken baggie lol.
    Kerri

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    • #22
      Originally posted by Daydream Believer View Post
      I keep mine on a layer ration year round. They are under lights as the demand for eggs goes on for my customers.
      While I can appreciate the fact that your hens are working for you to provide $income for you, do you EVER allow them a rest period? Regardless of the "demand for eggs", your hens are living critters, not machines.

      Nice for your customers; sad for your birds.

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      • #23
        Originally posted by Bacardi1 View Post
        While I can appreciate the fact that your hens are working for you to provide $income for you, do you EVER allow them a rest period? Regardless of the "demand for eggs", your hens are living critters, not machines.

        Nice for your customers; sad for your birds.
        Wow...are you actually accusing me of abusing my chickens because I put a light in their coop in the winter? Seriously???? You do realize that they ALL molt at least once a year so YES, they get a break from laying...duh... When they pass their most productive age of 2 years, I find them homes with folks who want a small hobby flock instead of slaughtering them for stew hens. If I don't have eggs for my customers than they will have to buy them from the grocery store and support a factory farm and a hen living her entire life in a battery cage or locked up in a big building. If you care as much about chickens as you pretend to , would you really rather they do that?

        Seriously this has to be one of the stupidest personal attacks I've ever been subjected to on this forum. Makes me wonder why I bother to post here.

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        • #24
          I then sort of have to ask what makes a call girl better than a corner hooker? One gets to retire with a 401k & the other the soup line?

          You yourself proclaim you are FORCING THEM TO lay to MEET DEMAND.

          So yours get a 401k.

          Interesting justification you have.

          "Police officers are public servants. Not James Bond with a license to kill."

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          • #25
            Originally posted by Daydream Believer View Post
            Wow...are you actually accusing me of abusing my chickens because I put a light in their coop in the winter? Seriously???? You do realize that they ALL molt at least once a year so YES, they get a break from laying...duh... When they pass their most productive age of 2 years, I find them homes with folks who want a small hobby flock instead of slaughtering them for stew hens. If I don't have eggs for my customers than they will have to buy them from the grocery store and support a factory farm and a hen living her entire life in a battery cage or locked up in a big building. If you care as much about chickens as you pretend to , would you really rather they do that?

            Seriously this has to be one of the stupidest personal attacks I've ever been subjected to on this forum. Makes me wonder why I bother to post here.
            We're all entitled to our opinions here. I'm sticking with mine, regardless of how "stupid" you think it is or how offended you are.

            Oh - & yes, chickens do "ALL" molt once a year (not more than once unless they're stressed). But that's not considered "a break from laying". Even YOU can't force them to lay during a molt - lights or not - because all their bodily energy is going into producing new feathers. So they physically CAN'T lay up to their normal standards. You consider that a "break"? Geesh.

            Don't want to post here anymore simply because of my opinion? Don't let the swinging door hit you in the behind.

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            • #26
              Originally posted by 1ofEach View Post
              Thanks for all the ideas. Alagirl-I read that exact same article. I have been debating starting some sprouts. Lately, I've been digging up the grass that has been sprouting on the edge of the compost pile where the pile does not get hot enough.

              My chickens already get every scrap that I can find. There is very little waste in my household, but leftovers and compost material go to the girls. Right now, they are working on the leftover pumpkins from Halloween. They sure can skin the insides out.

              I will always provide them some layer feed, but they really enjoy finding their own stuff outside. They are so used to getting stuff that they run to the fence to greet me and run into the coup if I go inside to see what I have.
              I have no chicken experience, past eating them.
              But my budgies love the sprouts.
              Well, they don't care too much for the mess when it has roots, not sure about truning green, but when the kernels are just popping open they go nuts over them. Consensus is that the sprouting unlocks enzymes not found in the dormant (dry) grain.

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              • #27
                No bacardi and the other person who could not resist accusing me of exploiting chickens, I'm just flat amazed at the judgmental bullcrap from some of you. [edit] leave someone who god forbid, tries to keep egg production going in the dead of winter to help pay for the damn chicken feed, as some sort of arch offender of chicken rights while you shop at the grocery store buying your battery hen eggs. What a bunch of hypocrites.
                Last edited by Moderator 3; Nov. 30, 2012, 07:30 AM. Reason: to remove personal attack

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                • #28
                  Gosh, I guess Daydream Believer and I are HORRIBLE, TERRIBLE, AWFUL PEOPLE!!! AHHH!! Because my hens have a light in their hen house as well. If they didn't...they would be in the dark all the time from October to March due to the fact of how their house is built (inside my windowless barn...).

                  I really don't equate what Daydream and I do ( I also sell eggs to customers, and if I didn't light their house, I'd have none for months on end) as the same as the big producers. I have my hens on pasture, and some are 10 years old now. Clearly, none are expiring due to laying pressure, fat, spoiled old things.

                  You know, this sounds like the argument of "the only healthy horses are those on 24/7 turnout, blanketless" vs. "I stall at night and put blankets on my horses for my convenience, heck I even body clip!" Neither are wrong.
                  Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!

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                  • #29
                    Originally posted by Daydream Believer View Post
                    No bacardi and the other person who could not resist accusing me of exploiting chickens, I'm just flat amazed at the judgmental bullcrap from some of you. Grow the hell up and find a real cause of cruelty to bitch about and leave someone who god forbid, tries to keep egg production going in the dead of winter to help pay for the damn chicken feed, as some sort of arch offender of chicken rights while you shop at the grocery store buying your battery hen eggs. What a bunch of hypocrites.
                    Egg Nazi!

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                    • #30
                      Calvincrowe..you can't make this sort of thing up can you? I wonder if they shop at the grocery store and buy their chicken there where it came from a confinement house...probably kept under lights 24/7 and never saw the light of day until the day it shipped to slaughter. Seriously, there needs to be some perspective and don't cast a stone unless you yourself are squeaky clean on such issues.

                      I understand that some people view all of their chickens as pets but I don't. I have a couple that are named and that are pets or a sort, and like yours, they are aging and in excellent condition despite the lights in the coop in the winter for a few extra hours a day. My chickens also have the run of my farm during the day. They dust bathe, scratch, etc...but the girls have to work for their mash. I can't afford to feed 100 hens in the off season (yes that gets pricey..more than I pay to feed my horses) without a bit of egg income to offset those costs. I'd go out of business and then all those hens would end up as stew...now wouldn't that be terrible???

                      I hate to say it but I'm beginning to wonder if Bluey is right about RARA's and the slippery slope sometimes. Geezzzz...seriously find a real cause to bitch about...there's a whole lot worse going on out there!

                      How dare you stall and clip your horses! How awful! ;-) I'll bet you put shoes on them too! GASP!

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                      • #31
                        [/QUOTE]


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                        • #32
                          Originally posted by Daydream Believer View Post
                          No bacardi and the other person who could not resist accusing me of exploiting chickens, I'm just flat amazed at the judgmental bullcrap from some of you. Grow the hell up and find a real cause of cruelty to bitch about and leave someone who god forbid, tries to keep egg production going in the dead of winter to help pay for the damn chicken feed, as some sort of arch offender of chicken rights while you shop at the grocery store buying your battery hen eggs. What a bunch of hypocrites.
                          Calm down dear. Have a glass of wine, perhaps? I expressed my opinion, & boy, so did you. I see an etiquette course in your future - lol. That said, one does have to wonder why you have chickens at all when you say that you need to keep lights on them all winter so that they can continue producing so you can "keep egg production going in the dead of winter to help pay for the damn chicken feed". Sort of sounds like keeping chickens may not be your thing since it seems to be such a vicious cycle what with having to pay for that "damn chicken feed" & all.

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                          • #33
                            I feed the BO's 3 hens, Lola, Lucy and Laverne, freeze-dried meal worms. I buy them in bulk, 20 pounds for a good price, from mealwormsbythepound.com. (cheaper than the little containers of mealwormfrenzy)

                            And I didn't read the train wreck before I started this reply.
                            Now to read the train wreck.

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                            • #34
                              Originally posted by Bacardi1 View Post
                              Calm down dear. Have a glass of wine, perhaps? I expressed my opinion, & boy, so did you. I see an etiquette course in your future - lol. That said, one does have to wonder why you have chickens at all when you say that you need to keep lights on them all winter so that they can continue producing so you can "keep egg production going in the dead of winter to help pay for the damn chicken feed". Sort of sounds like keeping chickens may not be your thing since it seems to be such a vicious cycle what with having to pay for that "damn chicken feed" & all.
                              No why don't you keep your rude unwanted opinions and snotty attitude to yourself? How about an etiquette course for you to mind your own business and refrain from personal attacks over something as stupid and petty as keeping a light on in the chicken house? You were the one who made the personal attack on me. Your insistence that I'm some sort of chicken abusing monster even in this post is NOT normal. [edit]

                              Seriously, do you buy your chicken meat from the grocery store and thus from a CAFO? I notice you didn't answer that question earlier. That in itself tells me you are mouthy hypocrite. Get over yourself.
                              Last edited by Moderator 1; Nov. 29, 2012, 11:27 PM.

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                              • #35
                                Originally posted by Daydream Believer View Post
                                No why don't you keep your rude unwanted opinions and snotty attitude to yourself? How about an etiquette course for you to mind your own business and refrain from personal attacks over something as stupid and petty as keeping a light on in the chicken house? You were the one who made the personal attack on me. Your insistence that I'm some sort of chicken abusing monster even in this post is NOT normal. [edit]

                                Seriously, do you buy your chicken meat from the grocery store and thus from a CAFO? I notice you didn't answer that question earlier. That in itself tells me you are mouthy hypocrite. Get over yourself.
                                Wow - get a grip woman.
                                Last edited by Moderator 1; Nov. 29, 2012, 11:27 PM.

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                                • #36
                                  I could say the same to you Bacardi. I probably shouldn't let a mouthy hypocrite like you bother me. You are NOT worth it.

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                                  • #37
                                    Just as a heads up to all...yes it is a full moon.
                                    Last edited by LauraKY; Nov. 29, 2012, 09:55 PM. Reason: spelling

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                                    • #38
                                      Cooked excess eggs, they like scramble and hard cooked equally. Various heirloom, organic winter squashes-which they prefer cooked to raw. I still keep them on layer for a balanced diet. But they do get lots of healthy treats.
                                      I LOVE my Chickens!

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                                      • #39
                                        The moon is actually quite beautiful tonight. Did you all know that the term "lunatic" came from people sleeping under the moonlight?

                                        Just feed the poor hens some scratch feed. And give them whatever else you want to to supplement their feed. Poor chickens all end up dead anyway. At least give them something good to eat while they are egg laying.

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                                        • #40
                                          Originally posted by kasjordan View Post
                                          I hate winter with my chickens. Miss the eggs, DESPISE buying them from the grocery store. I know I could put them under lights but I don't want to, figure they can use the break. I feed them layer mash or pellets all year round. Every time we clean the fridge, they get it. Any leftovers from dinner we're not saving, they get it. Thanksgiving dinner at his parents house, I overheard DH telling his mom he would take a chicken baggie lol.
                                          That is too funny!
                                          I LOVE my Chickens!

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