growing you own animal feed

Do you keep livestock? Having any problems? Want to talk about it, whether it be sheep, goats, chickens, pigs, bees or llamas, here is your place to discuss.
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demi
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growing you own animal feed

Post: # 248727Post demi
Mon Nov 21, 2011 11:12 am

we want to produce our own feed for the milking goats and chickens.

any suggestions on the best things to grow?

was thinking an alfalfa clover mix for hay for the goats.
what kind of grains should we grow for milking goats and chickens?

also how much grain/hay can be produced per acre on advrage?
and how much do chickens/ milking goats need per year?
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Re: growing you own animal feed

Post: # 248748Post The Riff-Raff Element
Mon Nov 21, 2011 6:54 pm

Oats might be a good bet for grains. They're the highest in protein of the common grains and the straw is as nutritious as lower grade hay. It can be fed unthreshed - just chuck it in by the armful - though I'd imagine for milking goats you'd want to offer some grains on top.

Yields obviously vary greatly, but as a rough guide you could expet 400-500g per metre square.

Chickens do well on oats too. I give ours (free rangers) a mix of oats, soft wheat and a little cracked maize plus peas or other high protein seed and they seem to do well enough. I'm not sure how they'd do on an oats only diet though.

Can't offer advice on quantities for goats though.

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Re: growing you own animal feed

Post: # 248750Post Ellendra
Mon Nov 21, 2011 9:14 pm

Countryside Magazine has a neat article about growing for livestock: http://www.countrysidemag.com/issues/87 ... anger.html

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Re: growing you own animal feed

Post: # 248751Post Marc
Mon Nov 21, 2011 9:47 pm

Yep, oats are good. There's an old-fashioned type of oats called naked oats. Named because it doesn't have the tough husk around the grain like modern oats. I thought about giving it (them?) a try. They'er supposed to be good to grow in an organic system as they don't respond well to artificial fertilizers. Check them out :icon_smile:
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Re: growing you own animal feed

Post: # 250918Post Oilystairs
Sun Jan 01, 2012 6:42 pm

Hi, we are thinking about growing maize (we are in hot climate with unlimited irrigation water) simply because it is easily hand picked and can be given to livestock with no threshing as they take the kernels off themselves. Anyone know if this is a good idea? Oats would work here on a winter crop but all that scything worries me!.

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Re: growing you own animal feed

Post: # 250924Post oldjerry
Sun Jan 01, 2012 7:19 pm

As far as the goat feed goes,if you live in rural Macedonia,and have sourced your goats locally,feed what the locals feed,if you can grow some of that,well and good,if not,then offset the cost of bought in food by selling milk\cheese\pork etc.
In the Uk we fed our goats on 40\40\20 Oats,Barley,field beans,with a bit of molasses to keep them keen.That was coming out about 14% protein,and theymilked in quantity,and often ran through for 2 yrs.(obviously with unlimited hay,and foliage.)If you need more protein add a bit of soya.
If your going to feed your own grain it's advantagious,though not essential to get some sort of mill(handmill is good),great for feeding wetmash to poultry.
If you're outside the EU explore the swill possibilities..great for poultry and pigs.

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Re: growing you own animal feed

Post: # 250930Post The Riff-Raff Element
Sun Jan 01, 2012 8:01 pm

Maize is good, but, as you suggest, needs a lot of water to flourish. Around here it is feed to cattle on the cob during the winter. It is relatively high in fats. It can be cut green (just when the cobs are forming) and made into a very high quality silage.

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