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More chicken talk

Fodder:  food, especially dried hay or feed, for cattle and other livestock. 

 Hmmm, these days it does not meet the definition of "dried", but more like "sprouted", I'd say.  
Fodder can be wheat, barley, oats, or rye, and I'm sure there are other grains that could be used.  The big thing is that the grain cannot be heat treated, making it a bit difficult to find in some areas.
Every day we soak about 6 cups of grain for 24 hours.  So each morning there is a new "batch" to pour into 2 of the pans shown above.  If done everyday, we have fodder to feed chickens everyday after the initial 6-8 day original sprouting time.
Holes have been punched in the pans, so water poured in the top pan drains down through the others. (Shelving has to be wire rack or plastic with holes). Watering is done twice a day.  We are blessed to have a room with a drain in the floor in the dairy barn, but we also have a pan under the shelf to catch most of the mess.

Our fodder trays sit in front of a sliding glass door, but most of the videos we watched on u-tube had success with just a regular window.  The chickens love this! and the cows are eating some too.  Each pan is broken into chunks, and it really goes a long way.  Several sources shared that they saved up to 75% on feed cost by growing fodder.  Since we are using only non-GMO feeds, we will welcome any savings.  I imagine the chickens will be especially thrilled to get their daily fodder as the weather gets colder, and free-range food is harder to come by.

Thanks Trina for pointing out (last post) that chickens need to scratch.  Our chickens are only on the concrete floored pens overnight. Also there is a 15x25 outdoor chicken run attached to their pen.
Has anyone else tried fodder?  Please share!!

2 comments:

  1. Wow - never even heard of it. We spend a fortune on chicken feed!
    Jenny

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  2. Anonymous2:10 PM

    Next year I hope to grow our own fodder for our animals too!!! Im so excited for all that you guys are doing and are able to do. :) ~Trina

    ReplyDelete