Along with sprouting grain for our chickens and ducks, Leighton quickly assembled this simple setup to grow our own feed in the chicken and duck pen. We are always looking for ways to reduce our feed bill, especially when organic feed is so pricey. With this simple feeding setup we are creating a ‘salad’ bar for our flock that they love.
I had read in an article somewhere about a poultry farmer who planted grain in his coop and protected it with mesh, the grain grew through the mesh providing his chickens with fresh greens and feed. Unfortunately, I can’t remember where I read it or who wrote it, but the idea stuck with me.
To prevent predator loss we no longer let our birds free range, and we have been looking for new ideas to get our birds some fresh greens. It was the perfect time to try this feeding experiment. So far it is working well and both the ducks and chickens enjoy the green growth and the grain.
Using leftover material Leighton made a simple frame out of wood and tacked rodent mesh on the top. We worked up a small area of ground and planted some oats. Within days it was sprouting through the mesh and the chicks and chickens were grazing on the top. Once the sprouts became bigger and could no longer grow through the mesh we moved the mesh frame to another spot and let the chickens and ducks scratch and dig through the oats.
The pictures were taken after we had moved the mesh frame, the chickens and ducks were enthusiastically eating the oats. We have since moved the mesh back to allow some regrowth and will let them eat it again in a few days.
How do you save money on your feed bill?