When can chicks be given fresh grass and at what age? We will explain these questions in our article.
Grass in kids - useful or not?
Opinions about the grass diverge. Some say, "no, no, until they rest their feet!", Others advise feeding her chickens when they hatched. There are originals, on the very first day they stuff chicks into the peaks of black peppercorns in chicks - “for disinfection”.
Let's say right away: grass is extremely necessary for chickens. Without it, you will not lift the bird to its feet, and if the chicks continue to grow, then slowly, remaining weak and painful. From an early age, green plants provide young animals not only with a rich set of vitamins, but also with microelements, proteins, and organic acids. You should only know when it is possible to include grass in the bird ration and which plants are most useful for birds.
How old is it to give grass?
It is not worth to chuck babies with greens from the first day of life. The first green dish should be given from the third to the fifth day. Best of all, if it is young, finely chopped nettle. It is added to corn grits, millet or mixed with boiled egg or cottage cheese. Proportion: one part of nettle into five parts of the main dish. One of the variants of this fodder for five-day chicks is shown in the video “Feeding Chickens” from the “Artsad Manko” channel.
How to feed?
The introduction of chickens with each new grass should be gradual. First, let's just a little, then - more. Especially watch at an early age to ensure that the greens that have fallen out of the feeder and moistened with water, do not rot under the legs of the chickens, contributing to the development of infections. Healthy chickens should eat the food they are offered for 30-40 minutes. Next, the feeder can be removed, leaving only clean water - until the next feeding.
From an early age, watch carefully for the "chair" feathered babies. Acceptable with the introduction of new grass is only a small temporary upset stomach. In the case of long-term diarrhea, food that is unknown to the chicks should be discarded - until they mature, they will not eat it. After you release the chicks into the pen, from the first day arrange them with feeding troughs from the net - the kids will be happy to reach through the holes on the leaf of greenery.
How to deal with chicks born in winter or early spring, when there is no greenery yet? They weed can be prepared for future use, even in summer or autumn. Dry the young shoots in the shade, pack them in canvas bags and store. As soon as chicken babies appear, chop your hay to rot to include chickens in mash from the third to fifth day. It can also be mixed with cereal.
Green variety in the feeder
Nettle is not the only grass that you can give your pet every day. Experienced poultry farmers know many plants that are happy to eat both chickens and adult chickens. These are wild grasses growing in the form of weeds in the garden or living in meadows, in the forest, in ravines. There is in the list of delicacies in chicken understanding and vegetable tops, and inhabitants of ponds, and even tree branches. But first things first.
Nettle is beneficial due to its composition. In addition to vitamin C, it contains vitamin K, fortifying the walls of the blood vessels of birds. And there are more than three times manganese and iron in it than in alfalfa. It also contains zinc, copper, potassium, and magnesium. Plus, biologically active substances that enhance the immune system of chickens and strengthen their health.
If you want the chickens to fly throughout the winter, prepare nettle for them to mix it with oats in the cold - the bird will thank you for this delicacy with frequent eggs.
It is best to look for the bird young shoots or nettle tops. She is good in the composition of salads for chicks - from dandelion and clover. You can give chickens and "tea" from this plant, pour boiling water and insist for several hours. Thanks to him, the chicken offspring will grow much faster.
If you ask an experienced village grandmother what to give to the chicks in the first days of their life, she will advise you the knotweed (birdworm, goose grass). Small leaves comfortably pecked chicken kids, completely fit in their beaks. It seems that they are very tasty, otherwise this herb would not be so loved by other representatives of birds.
The knotweed grows everywhere - from gardens to forest edges, remaining green until late autumn. At this time, sparrows, starlings, tits pop in on lawns covered with knotweed, to feast on seeds. Your chickens, too, will not give up this delicacy. You can mow the grass all summer.
A popular green feed for chicks is alfalfa, clover, young peas, oats, and wheat. These plants are good as in the composition of the mash, and as hay for the winter. In cold weather, sprouted wheat or barley grains are an indispensable green delicacy. Chicken cubs feed you "thank you" and for delicacies from weeds - dandelion, wheatgrass, shchiritsa (amaranth), purslane, yarrow, meadow clover.
Be careful! Among wild grasses, dangerous for chickens are found: hemlock, hemlock, autumn crocus, nightshade, hellebore. You can't give them to the bird!
You can find greens for chicks in your own garden. These are tops or leaves of vegetables - sorrel, cabbage, radish, beet, rutabaga, carrots, onions and garlic, table salad, parsley, fennel, Jerusalem artichoke. It needs to be washed, chopped, and then given in mash. Greens can also be dried for winter for mature birds.
By the way, chickens can even pickle cabbage, only take less salt than for the "human table".
Finally, a head of cabbage will be a good “simulator” for young, which moves little. Suspend him so that you can peck bouncing! And tasty and healthy.
Almost forgotten, but well-known among the people delicacy for domestic birds, having a very rich chemical composition. These are biologically active substances, thanks to which chicks grow, like on yeast, vitamin A, B, E, microelements bromine, calcium, iodine, phosphorus. Lemna can even be a substitute for top dressing, for example, fish or bone meal, fish oil.
It grows in ponds on the surface of stagnant water, it can be harvested from spring to autumn. Collect bag with cage or rake, rinse and lay on the ground in the pen! Both chickens and an adult bird immediately swoop on duckweed and peck with gusto. You can give duckweed daily. In the dried form in the winter it is an excellent nutritional feed for chickens.
If there is a coniferous forest nearby, feel free to go there for the spruce branches. The needles contain a lot of vitamin C and carotene, and in winter, your chickens will have to eat mashed potatoes with dry, shredded needles. Over time, you will notice that your young bird is addicted to some one or two grass. Treat him to your favorite delicacy!
But, in general, try to give the growing bird a variety of herbs. And you will be happy to note that the young grow well and develop properly.
Do you give your chickens grass or other greens?Poll
- Yes, we regularly collect
- Yes, the chickens themselves collect it on the run