Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Marriages Report

Everyone has now completed their 7 days with the Marriages pellets-with-Flubenvet.  We've had mixed results.

Normally, we feed Smallholder feed to everyone, so we knew we might have a bit of a problem with acceptance at just changing the feed overnight, with no gradual introduction.


At the Allotment we use Grandpa's Feeders (which I highly recommend, worth the money), so we filled the two feeders with 4kg each. We allowed 1kg per bird, which allows for 150g per chook per day.  We expected this to be far too much for our Laydees, who are little things,  and possibly for our Breeding Flock, who aren't laying much at the moment and are eating correspondingly less food.

At home, I measured out 4kg initially spread into their 5 Grubs . During the course of the seven days I added 2x500g, and 1x375g extra.  At the end of the 7 days, the remaining feed was collected and weighed.

At the end of the 7 days, we collected the remaining food from each pen, and weighed it.

In our breeding pen,  the birds consumed an average of 75g per day per bird.  It would have been more, but the cold snap meant that we had been feeding more corn than usual, and obviously this tool the place of some rations. Given that they aren't laying, and Roo doesn't lay at all of course, means that we are reasonably happy with this. 

The Laydees - goodness knows what they were eating, because it certainly wasn't the pellets.   They seem to have eaten only 25g per bird per day  Again, it's possible that the extra-corn-to-combat-the-cold -spell got in the way.   I'm also wondering if I made a mistake with my weighing out?

The Garden Girls, who were a last minute addition to the trial, did really well. I kept them in the Run longer in the mornings, not letting them out until 11am,  and they were back in at 4pm.  I also only gave them a token amount of corn, abd very few treats. They ate an average of 90g per bird per day,  and that seems fine as well, especially as only 4 of them are laying.

So, I will use Marriages-with-Flubenvet again in the summer  I'll measure again next time,  and if the Laydees still don't eat it, I'll resort to the old method of worming them.

It's a shame that the current batch of pellets will expire before they are next due for worming.

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