Archive for the ‘Chickens’ Category

Tips for Raising Chickens in Winter

Friday, November 19th, 2021

Raising Chickens in WinterRaising chickens in winter can be a lot of fun. Some hens love wandering around the yard and their first snow sighting can be quite entertaining. A bird’s thick feathers are a natural protective coat. As a result, most breeds are well-equipped for winter.

Here are a few tips on how to care for chickens in the winter:

      1. How to keep chickens warm in winter:
        Do not add heat lamps. Chickens, especially cold-tolerant breeds, can withstand winter temperatures without supplemental heat. A chicken’s body temperature is around 106 degrees Fahrenheit, and they have their own protective layer of feathers to keep them warm.

        Most importantly, if you feel it is necessary to provide a source of heat, only provide enough heat to raise the temperature a few degrees. The hens will adjust to the cold temperature, but if it is 70 degrees Fahrenheit in the coop and 0 degrees Fahrenheit in the run, birds will not be able to regulate their body temperature.

      2. What to feed chickens in winter:
        A common myth is to feed oatmeal to birds in the winter. This is not a beneficial treat for chickens. Oats contain some types of fiber that chickens can’t digest which can cause the contents of the digestive tract to thicken. This leads to a reduction in the bird’s ability to digest and absorb nutrients. Greens are also unnecessary. Hens may pick at hay and spread it around, but they are not going to eat it.

        Feeding a complete layer feed like Purina® Layena®, Purina® Layena® Plus Omega-3 or Purina® Organic Pellets or Crumbles will provide the necessary nutrition hens need through the winter.

      3. Ensure feed and water isn’t frozen.
        Consider heated waterers. Feed and water birds more often when it’s below freezing. Energy needs increase in winter. Animals expend a considerable amount of energy to stay warm and will eat more feed. Complete layer feeds include all the energy hens need. The 90/10 rule still applies in winter.
      4. Allow exploration.
        Firstly, birds can tolerate snow, cold air and ice water. There is very little muscle in the lower part of bird legs and feet. Tendons control the movements. They stretch from the upper part of the legs down to the toes. Secondly, the blood entering the lower legs and feet are cooled by the blood returning to the heart. The blood going to the toes warms the blood returning. As a result, the tissue receives just enough heat to avoid frostbite while also being provided with enough oxygen to keep things functioning.
      5. Collect eggs more frequently.
        Temperatures below freezing result in frozen eggs. Moreover, as the egg freezes, the contents expand and will cause the egg to crack.
      6. Keep the chicken coop draft free.
        But don’t seal it completely. Some air needs to be exchanged to prevent ammonia build up. Open the top vent or higher windows slightly so fresh air can enter and stale air can exit.
      7. Keep the chicken coop dry.
        Remove any wet spots daily. Provide more bedding than you would in other seasons so birds have a place to burrow and stay cozy.
      8. Continue offering activities in the chicken coop.
        Hens will spend more time in the coop, so offer enrichment. For example, logs, sturdy branches or chicken swings can work well and place a Purina® Flock Block® supplement in the coop for a nutritious place to peck.

In conclusion, visit Kissimmee Valley Feed to treat your flock!

Article Source: Purina Mills

Ready to see the difference a complete feed can make in your flock? Sign up for Purina’s Feed Greatness® Challenge.

Trick or Treat, Give Your Chickens Something Good to Eat!

Thursday, October 14th, 2021

A chicken in the foreground with pieces of pumpkin in the background.Trick or Treat, Give Your Chickens Something Good to Eat! There is a cool breeze in the air and the leaves are starting to turn rich hues in many parts of the country. Yes, fall is upon us. It’s that wonderful time of year that brings us many bountiful tidings, including pumpkin spice-everything, hay rides and trick or treater’s. But what does the fall season mean for your chickens? The answer, is likely already a part of your seasonal tradition!

If you are getting ready to carve those annual jack-o-lanterns, you can cringe a little less when scooping the slimy goo of seeds out, because it can serve a purpose this year! The guts of your pumpkins are in-fact a delicious treat to your chickens. Aside from your guys and gals loving the flavor of pumpkin contents, they are loaded with some great nutrients. Pumpkins contain vitamins A, B and C, as well as zinc. Vitamin E can also be found in the seeds. In addition, you can feed all parts of the pumpkin to chickens, just make sure the rinds are cut up some so they can easily eat.

After all the little ghosts and goblins have stopped by, you can even feed the jack-o-lanterns to your chickens! Just make sure there is no molding on the inside or outside. So get to carving, your ladies and gentlemen are awaiting a treat!

Stop by Kissimmee Valley Feed to check out our fantastic backyard flock selection!

Article Source: “Trick or Treat, Give Your Chickens Something Good to Eat!” by GINA THESING for Nutrena’s Scoop from the Coop

The Molting Process

Tuesday, September 21st, 2021

The Molting ProcessAhh, the molting process. Shorter days and cooler temperatures…For people, it’s a sign that it is back to school time and fall. To chickens, it’s a sign that it is time to renew their feathers. Losing feathers and re-growing them is called molting and occurs every year when the days get shorter.

During molt, chickens typically stop laying eggs and use this time to build up their nutrient reserves. Even though they are not laying, it is critical that your chickens have a high quality diet during this time.

Feeding a high quality ration such as NatureWise Feather Fixer™ during molt will help your birds get through the molting process and back to laying eggs as quickly as possible. Feather Fixer™ is a unique and innovative life-stage product that can also be fed year round if desired. It has elevated levels of protein as well as a mix of vitamins, minerals and amino acids that help maintain healthy skin and develop strong and beautiful new feathers.

Top tips for feeding through the molt:

  • Feed a high protein feed like NatureWise Feather Fixer that is a complete feed, so you don’t have to worry about feeding other protein supplements to feed along with layer feed during molt.
  • Make feed available free choice
  • Limit scratch to 10% of diet during molt so you don’t dilute the protein content of the ration
  • Molting and growing new feathers requires a lot of energy. Feathers are 85% protein… so be sure your birds’ diet includes a highly nutritious feed like NatureWise or Country Feeds that consists of at least 16% protein, or ideally, the higher protein NatureWise Feather Fixer. You don’t need to add medications or other vitamins if you’re feeding one of these feeds.
  • Just as your chickens have individual personalities, they will go through molt differently as well. Some lose a few feathers and grow them back in as quickly as 3-4 weeks. Other chickens lose a lot of feathers and take 12-16 weeks to grow them back.

Other tips for helping chickens get through molting:

  • Reduce stress as much as possible, avoid bringing new birds into the flock if possible
  • Chickens should act normal during their molt – if they seem sick, something else is wrong
  • Both roosters and hens go through molt
  • Avoid handling your chickens during molt, it is painful for them and increases stress

Chickens will lose feathers in a sequence starting with the head and neck and then down the back, across the breast and thighs and finally their tail feathers. The new feathers that emerge are called pinfeathers and will grow in following the same sequence they were lost.

So don’t panic when your chickens start losing their feathers and stop laying eggs. Molting is a normal and natural process of shedding feathers and re-growing them that all chickens go through. The best thing you can do to help your chickens through molt is to feed a high quality, high protein layer feed.

In conclusion, visit Kissimmee Valley Feed for all things chicken!

Article source: Nutrena World

Flock-Tober 2021

Tuesday, September 21st, 2021

Flock-Tober 2021Flock-Tober 2021: Shop at Kissimmee Valley Feed’s Main Store during October and get a FREE limited-edition coop sign when you purchase a large bag of Purina Layer feed*! These signs are popular and we will run out!

Don’t forget to fluff those feathers and polish your hen’s beaks for the 5th annual Purina® Miss Flock-Tober® pageant! Purina® will crown weekly winners of 4 categories this month – chosen by YOU! Find your best #PurinaFed poultry photos and strut over to the Purina Poultry Facebook page to enter.

Are your chicks growing? Once your chicks hit 18-20 weeks old or lay their first egg, it’s time to transition to Purina Layena poultry feed to sustain growth and promote egg production! Check out our poultry supplies here! Most importantly, enjoy Flock-Tober 2021!

Transitioning Chickens to Layer Feed

Friday, July 23rd, 2021

Wondering when it’s time to begin transitioning chickens to layer feed? For backyard chickens, most egg-laying breeds reach adulthood at 18 weeks and lay their first egg— perfect timing when you can start your chickens on layer feed.

This feed switch is an essential step in the road to farm fresh eggs because hens require different nutrients to produce eggs as compared to when they are growing.

To produce an egg each day, hens need high levels of calcium, vitamins and minerals. Hens transfer many of these nutrients directly into their eggs, so the chicken feed ingredients in the layer feed play an essential role in the eggs that hens produce.

Consider the following steps when transitioning to a complete chicken layer feed:

1. Choose a chicken feed formula that matches your goals.

Select a complete layer feed before the transition begins. Ideally, by week 16 the layer feed decision should be made. That way, the transition can be planned.

First, look for a complete layer feed. This means the feed should be formulated to provide everything hens require without a need to supplement.

There are many complete layer feed options available, Kissimmee Valley Feed offers Purina® Organic layer feed, Purina® Layena®Plus Omega-3 and Purina® Layena® pellets and crumbles.

Each of these chicken feed formulas is designed to meet specific flock goals. No matter the goals you have. be sure the layer feed is made with simple, wholesome ingredients. The feed should include 16 percent protein and at least 3.25 percent calcium as well as key vitamins and minerals.

These are just the essentials, though. Look for additional ingredients in the layer feed to bring hen health and egg quality to the next level.

A few next level ingredients to look for include:

Rich, yellow yolks: Marigold extract
Strong shells: Oyster Strong™ System
Immune and digestive health: Prebiotics and probiotics
Vibrant feathering: Essential amino acids such as lysine and methionine
Omega-rich eggs: Added omega-3 fatty acids

2. Transition over one week.

When birds reach 18 weeks old or when the first egg arrives, slowly switch your chickens to a layer feed. It is important to make the transition over time to prevent digestive upset.

For our backyard birds on our farm in Missouri, we have found it’s best to make the transition over time rather than all at once. We mix the starter and layer feed evenly for four or five days. Birds used to crumbles? Start with a crumble layer feed. The same goes with pellets. The more similar the two feeds are, the more smoothly the transition will go.

Many hens will eat the mixed feed without noticing a difference. When hens are eating both feeds, flock owners can stop feeding the starter feed and make the complete switch to all layer feed. It is important to give your birds enough time to adjust to the new diet. Most birds will adjust within a couple of weeks but some can take a month or longer to fully transition to their new diet.

3. Keep it consistent.

Once the transition to layer feed is complete, it’s best to maintain a routine.

We recommend providing free choice layer feed to hens and switching out the feed each morning and evening. If birds are free-ranging, offer the complete feed to hens before they go out in the morning. This will help them consume the nutrients they require before filling up on less nutritious insects and plants.

It’s important for the complete feed to make up at least 90 percent of the hen’s diet. We feed complete layer feeds on our farm. They are formulated to provide all the nutrients hens require at the correct levels. It’s reassuring to know that each bite of feed is balanced to keep our hens healthy and producing quality eggs.

Source: Purina Mills

Navigation



Share this page

Calendar

December 2021
M T W T F S S
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031EC
    • No events.

Quick Info


Main Store
1501 Eastern Ave map

Saint Cloud, FL 34769..

Contact Info

Phone: 407-957-4100
Fax: 407-957-0450

Store Hours

Mon-Fri: 8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sat: 8:00 am - 2:00 pm
Sunday Closed


Second Store
215 13th Street

St. Cloud, FL 34769

Contact Info

Phone: 407-892-4040

Store Hours

Mon-Fri: 9:00 am - 7:00 pm
Sat: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Sunday: Closed