I bought my chicken feed from him. I assumed like dogs, chickens would not appreciate an abrupt diet change, and I am keen to do best by them.
So, I continued to feed them this: layers pellets.
Then I started researching, and chatting to other chicken keepers.
This stuff is full of medication, arsenic, preservatives, and doesn't actual have perfect nutrient levels it claims to.
I know it is backwards, doing the research after, but I seriously thought that this time, in this area of life surely I could just choose the norm. Why is the product on the shelf, despite its label telling me it is best for me, so rarely full of what it said on the tin?
Now, I have met a nice man, who mixes poultry feed specific to the breed and lifestyle of the individual flock of chickens. He came out and met my chickens, and has mixed me this.
Doesn't that just look a lot nicer to eat!
The mix contains
2 parts whole corn
3 parts soft white wheat
3 parts hard red winter wheat
1 part hulled barley
1 part oat groats
1 part sunflower seeds (in winter this is increased to 2 parts)
1 part millet
1 part kamut
1 part amaranth seeds
1 part split peas
1 part lentils
1 part quinoa
1 part sesame seeds
1/2 part flax seeds
1/2 part dried kelp
1/8 part oyster shell
And now our egg yolks have gone from pale to brilliant almost orange, our chickens seem thrilled with their new meal, and I actually feel like I have a better grasp on their overall care.
(Not least to say, it is going to cost about half what I was spending too.)
No soya, no medications, and food that actually looks like food.