How To Make Chicken, Poultry Feed For Broilers And Layers In Nigeria
Poultry Feeding Guide: Preparing Fermented Feed For Chickens
Food and its nutritional components are responsible for the survival and healthy growth of not only poultry birds but living things in general. The ingredients used in making feeds for poultry are meant to provide all necessary nutrients. Various domestic birds have feed diets which provide them with the kind and amount of nutrients they require per time.
Fermentation is a popular process used by individuals to enhance the nature and the quality of some foods and beverages. It is a process which can also be used to improve the quality of food for diverse animals.
Farmers frequently try out new techniques and methods of making chicken feed. This is done with the aim of improving the quality of feeds, to further aid the growth and health of chickens and help the farmer achieve better results. Fermentation of poultry feeds is one of such feed enhancing methods. Producing fermented feeds for domestic birds is a feeding method that has gained popularity over the years.
Fermentation of feed is a process of making animal feeds; in this method, various types of grains are placed under certain conditions which permit natural bacteria to act on these grains and the actions of these bacteria results in the feed being partially broken down. The process of feed fermentation makes foods more healthy and nutritious for animals.
Feed fermentation is said to have quite a number of benefits for poultry birds. It helps in the easy absorption of nutrients and aids the digestion process. Fermenting chicken food also eliminates harmful toxins contained in the food. It promotes and maintains the intestinal health of poultry birds and helps improve quality of eggs in laying birds.
Fermented feeds are said to be much more satisfying and filling for poultry birds than regular feeds. For this reason, the domestic birds tend to consume lesser amounts of fermented feeds. This in turn reduces the farmer’s expenses on the purchase of feed.
By using the fermenting process for chicken food, several vital nutrients and vitamins are released and some others are created which aids the health of poultry birds.
How To Prepare Fermented Feeds For Chickens
Fermented feed should be prepared based on the number of chickens you intend to feed so as to avoid waste. This is because fermented feed is meant to be consumed within a specific period of time. The nature of this feed does not permit it have a lengthy shelf life. Below are steps to take when fermenting feed for chickens.
Get A Container
The container is meant to hold whatever grains which you intend to ferment. So pick a container which is of the right size for the grains you plan to ferment. The container should have a cover though some people prefer using nets as lids for the container. This container should also not be made of metal because the properties in metal may interact negatively with the feed during the fermentation process. Plastic buckets or glass jars can be made use of instead.
Choose Your Ingredients
Pick what kind of feed you would like to ferment. Fermented feeds for chickens usually constitute of a variety of grains, grain bran, seeds and nuts. After the desired ingredients and quantities have been decided upon, the grains are to be poured into the selected container. The grains should not be allowed to fill up the container, enough space should be left. This is to give enough room for the expansion of grains as they absorb water. These grains will increase in volume as they take in more water and they require space for this action.
Clean and chemical free water is then to be added to the grains. Any form of chemically treated water should not be used. The water should be from a pure source, water wells and boreholes are a good source. The quantity of water added should be at least about 2 inches above the grains. The grains are to remain completely submerged in water at all times during this process to prevent the growth of mold. The container is then to be covered and kept where it will not be exposed to direct sunlight preferably somewhere indoors.
Monitor The Process
The fermenting feed is to be checked and stirred about two or three times a day at least. The level of water in the mixture should be observed and more water can be added if need be. The water should always be higher than the level of the grain at all times during the fermenting process. Gradually as fermentation takes place the mixture begins to have a sour smell, look kind of creamy, foamy and have bubbles on the top.
Fermentation process typically takes about three to four days in cold weather and about 24 to 48 hours in warmer climates. The feed should not have an awful or foul smell neither should there be the presence of mold. If this happens it might render the feed useless as it would have to be thrown away. Always make sure the water level is higher than the grains.
When the process is complete the feed is ready to be given to the chickens. The water could be drained out of the feed or you may decide to leave in a little bit of water in the mixture while feeding the poultry birds. The water left in the container can also be used to start up another fermentation process with another batch of grains.
In cases where the chickens are not really keen on the consumption of fermented feeds, dry feed can be mixed with fermented in smaller or equal quantities to encourage speedy consumption.
In the fermentation process avoid adding things like vinegar or yeast to the fermenting grains, to avoid the mixture turning alcoholic.
Poultry Feed Ingredients In Nigeria
Poultry feeds are all made of similar ingredients, the components of these feeds are more or less the same. It is the percentage of each of these ingredients that makes the difference. The percentage of these ingredients usually differs depending on the kind of poultry birds which the feed is being made for.
Common ingredients used to make poultry feed in Nigeria include: fish meal, lime, whole maize, bone meal, maize bran, wheat, wheat bran, soya beans and soya meal. These ingredients are mixed in specific percentages and quantities to provide the adequate nutrients and vitamins for poultry birds in the right proportion.
How To Make Chicken Feed For Broilers
Broilers are bred for meat production so their diet constitutes ingredients which provide them with adequate protein, minerals and energy for healthy growth. The feed mix for broilers will depend on the age of the broilers. Broiler starter is the feed which is given to broilers from one to four weeks old. The formulation of a small portion of feed requires: soya-bean meal 7kg, whole maize grain 20kg, lime 2kg, fish meal 6kg, threonine 17.5g and lysine 17.5g.
Broiler finisher is given to broilers from about five weeks until they are sold off which is usually between seven and eight weeks. The ingredients required are:
grower pmx 5g, coccidiostat 2.5g, bone meal 20g, zincbacitrach 2.5g, salt 2.5g, wheat pollard 6.6kg, sunflower cake 2.3g, whole maize grain 5kg, soya meal 1.7kg, fishmeal 1.5kg, wheat bran 5kg, lime 1kg, maize germ 8.3kg and cotton seed cake 3kg.
How To Make Homemade Chicken Feed
The materials required for homemade chicken feed are various types of seeds and grains. The grains could be mixed and served whole or broken to smaller bits. The recipe can be doubled or tripled depending on the number of poultry birds to be fed. The ingredients needed are Maize bran 3.5kg, fish meal 2.8 kg, whole maize 12.1kg, lime 2.1 kg and soya 4.3kg. These ingredients are to be mixed thoroughly to guarantee a proper blend. The ingredients being used in making your homemade feed should be of good quality and from reliable sources. The feed should first be tested on a small number of chickens to properly monitor the reaction of the chickens to the feed.
Poultry Feed Formation Methods For Layers
When making feed for layers the feeds could be made and fed to the layers dry or wet in the form of fermented feeds. The ingredients basically remain the same only the method of preparation differs. Dry grain ingredients for poultry are mixed based on the age of the layers. When the chickens are at the stage of laying their diets are to be rich in protein and calcium. This helps proper egg formation.
Fermented feed is said to be quite good for layer. Not only does it help promoted the general health of the layers, it also improves the quality of the eggs produced by layers. The eggs of layers consuming fermented feeds are said to have harder and thicker shells.
Any kind of feeds being given to poultry birds should be of good quality. This is to ensure these birds get every nutritional requirement in the right quantity. The production process of poultry birds for meat and eggs can be quite tasking, but the effort at the end of the day is well worth it.