Thursday, July 8, 2010

Easy Live Food for Free Range Chickens

Chickens LOVE to forage for live food. In Denver, after a rain, vast numbers of nightcrawlers would emerge from that clay-based loam and my girls would go nuts feasting on them. Despite Colorado's dry climate, slugs can be NIGHTMARISH....before I got chickens, some nights I'd hand gather a GALLON of the slimy bastards and flush them down the toilet. Just three white chickens rescued from a factory farm on "Campbell's Soup" day very quickly made my slug problems a thing of the past. They'd eat SO many slugs that their gullets would extend!

Here at my Tampa house, cockroaches inside and out were a problem after it was a rental for a year and the tenant left vast piles of wood scraps in my first chickens solved that problem quickly too.Each summer , when the rains finally kick in, I throw food scraps on the ground in their pathway, cover them with a big piece of carpet, then weekly pull back the carpet to reveal a seething mass of roaches and pill SOON as the chickens see my reaching for the carpet they run up. I RARELY get a roach in the house despite my "raising" them in this fashion...they seem to prefer the "safety" of staying beneath the carpet with that food supply....until I lift the carpet and they are scarfed up in seconds.

Nice to see roach and pillbug protein converted to eggs and meat! John

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