Feeding Needs of Silkies

Silkies were probably pampered a few thousand years ago in the temples and gardens of the Far East and still need some extra pampering today compared to other breeds of chickens. I have found the commercial feed one purchases and feeds to chickens isn't adequate enough for silkies. If you are purchasing a commercial feed I recommend a 24% grower that you often use for starting chicks compared to 16%. Besides commercial feed and access to green grass and insects that crawl and fly during good weather I also supplement their diet. I cook rice (be sure you acquire the long grain rice otherwise the rice will often clump and you want individual rice kernels when cooked), chop broccoli and boiled eggs in the food processor and mix with the cooked rice and then add brewer's yeast and ground flaxseed. I place the mixture in a large tub in the refrigerator and feed them the mixture twice a day. They also have access to scratch grain. I also get orange slices from a restaurant that uses them as plate garnishes that few people eat. Silkies love oranges and will eat the entire inside of the orange except for the rind. I also add a multi liquid vitamin/mineral to their water.

Rice mixture

Rice mixture

I found that I was assisting over 60% of chicks in hatching, either under hens or in the incubator. Once I added the above diet and the liquid vitamin/mineral to their water I rarely have to assist a chick in hatching and they are much more vigorous.

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