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Natural forages for poultry
I would be very interested in others' experiences with feeding nuts and
other tree crops to poultry. I want to integrate a small flock of chickens
into our market garden area, so they will generally not be free-ranging, but
I would like to reduce our dependence on corn & soybeans for feed. We are
in the Ozarks, and so have a lot of black walnut, hickory, honey locust,
mulberry and persimmon trees.
How much of a layer ration can you build out of mast? How about for
broilers? Is it a reasonable outlay of time and energy to gather and grind
(hammer mill?) enough nuts to make a dent in your feed bill? Any experience
you might share with me on this would be helpful. I have read some of the
permaculture literature on this, but don't know any of the practical facts
about it other than that hens do love a black walnut if you crack it for them.
Any other feed alternatives to corn/soy would also be of interest.
This is my first post, so tell me if I screwed up somehow.
Fox, Arkansas USA