This past spring our local feed mill went out of business, with no fair warning – ughh. Leaving us in a bit of a pickle, to say the least. We went to pick up feed one Saturday morning and found a note on the door stating the property was being foreclosed on. What were we going to do? Of course, we ran to a feed store and grabbed a bit of store-bought feed to get us through. Then we scoured the area looking for another family run feed mill. We were able to locate one and began purchasing through them immediately. The feed looked a bit different than what we used to but the tag pretty much matched up to our old one.
As spring turned to summer our girls laying habits took a dive. Thinking maybe molt had kicked in early, we did not really think much of it. That was until our seventy-five girls began laying less than a dozen a day. We began to worry that something may be wrong with our flock. After a lot of research, it seemed most likely that it was the change in food quality. Hmmmm but the ingredients and percentages were almost identical?
We decided to conduct a bit of an experiment. So, we purchased some high protein store-bought feed to see if it would make a difference. Wow did it! Within only a week our egg count doubled. Then we decided to take it one step further and add some high protein chick feed to their diet to up the stakes a bit more. Within a week we started seeing four dozen eggs a day! We then added sunflower seeds and scratch into the mix and wow! We had to sell some chickens cause we had way too many eggs.
Now in the middle of winter, our girls are laying like crazy as if their seasons are backwards. While most other chicken keepers are amid a dry spell, ours are laying four to five dozen a day! So, the moral of the story? Not all food is created equal. Not only did they start laying better their feathers look amazing, combs are bright red again, and their spunk is all back.