Raising Crickets/Mealworms/Etc. for Poultry Feed???

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by Mac_, Aug 24, 2010.

  1. Mac_

    Mac_ Well-Known Member

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    Is anyone raising crickets, mealworms, etc. for the protein component of your poultry feed?

    Is it practical to raise enough to feed 18 layers and maybe 50 broilers or ducks? I'm guessing this would be at least 2 or 3 lbs of crickets or mealworms a day.

    All feedback will be appreciated.

    Thanks!

    Mac
     
  2. Our Little Farm

    Our Little Farm Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Raised crickets for a bearded dragon lizard, and got them to hatch, but on a scale for that many? That is a huge operation you are talking about :eek: Why not let them free range or in tractors and move them twice a day to new pasture? A lot easier if you have that option. :)
     

  3. pancho

    pancho Well-Known Member

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    Not worth the effort. Your cost and your time would make it much cheaper to buy feed.
     
  4. Mac_

    Mac_ Well-Known Member

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    The hens do day range on pretty good pasture with a lot of clover.

    The ducks and broilers also. I also plant crimson clover, rye, chicory, and millet that we cut and feed to birds when they get locked up in the evening.

    We mix our own feed from organic whole grains and organic fish meal (for protein) and the organic fish meal is the most expensive component by far. Just looking into options to economize on the feed. (I really prefer not to feed, or eat soy.)

    This reminds me, I tried to get duckweed growing in our pond last summer without success. I need to check the pH again. Maybe lime and "reseed" some duckweed.

    Thanks,

    Mac
     
  5. KSALguy

    KSALguy Lost in the Wiregrass Supporter

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    crickets are a bit more labor and cost prohibitive but meal worms and red worms are relatively easy, all you need is the long flat plastic toats put oat meal and some apple wedges in for the meal worms and collect a couple scoop full of worms when you need,

    if your already useing fish meal why not go take a fishing pole and catch you a catfish or two, or some other readily available fish in your area, hang it up in the pen once or twice a week and let the chickens pick the bones clean,

    Red worms can be grown in compost beds, all you need is a protected area to set up the compost beds and throw your grass clippings. manuer, table scraps, old news papor etc, and let the worms break it all down for the garden and collect buckets of worms at at time,
    the only reason crickets are more trouble is the eggs need more controled conditions to hatch and you end up haveing way more cricket cages just trying to get them up to adult size to breed
     
  6. WstTxLady

    WstTxLady Well-Known Member

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    We had a HUGE cricket hatch here and the chicken are free range thus made short work of the crickets. We get a few inside, so I just put them in a mason jar with holes in the lid for the next day. Plus we turn things over daily to flush out more crickets. NEVER thought we have that many but we do.