Sunday, November 7, 2010

Natural Farming chicken feed

NF emphasizes the use of homemade chicken feed. We cut down the use of commercial feed as much as possible. But feed is not just simply made from material lying around. Nutrient balance and effect to chicken bodies are carefully calculated. That is why we can confidently say that NF homemade feed is better than commercial ones. We do not worry about " what to buy", we speculate on and " how we use" " what we have."
Feed is given only once a day compared to conventional poultry where it's given 3-4 times or even throughout the day. We follow the rule " once full and once hungry" in one day. Feed is given 2 hours before sunset.
Observing the law of nature, Natural farming chickens have 2 times longer productive period ( 2-3 years) than conventional method. Not to mention that the NF chickens are much healthy and happy.

* Brown rice grains and bamboo leaves

In NF, we feed freshly hatched chicks with whole brown rice grains in unlimited quantity. No powder feed are given. After giving for 3 days for layer and 1 day for broilers, we add bamboo leaves. On day 50, we add rice husks; gradually increase the proportion to reach 20-25% of the total feed after 6 months when egg-laying rate is 60%. This kind of feed toughens the intestines and grows a very healthy chicken.
Fed with soft and nutritious feed,chicks do not develop strong digestive organs and excrete undigested nutrition. This is source of smell and disease. Just as the newly germinating sprout has the most vital power, the freshly hatched chick has a vigorous ability to adapt and develop. Feeding this tough food, NF chicks develop intestines 260-300cm long, and  ordinary chicks  only grow 130-140cm long.
And the length of cecum is seven times longer!

* Homemade feed

All material other than mineral matter ( rocks) can be turned into feed. For example, fresh green is a good feed. It is available everywhere. It makes up for 1/3 of total feed for adult chickens. Bamboo leaves rich in fiber also serve as an excellent feed.
Feed is abundant on the floors too. Chicken feces are converted into feed by IMOs. Spraying FPJ and LAB will promote fermentation. This can make up for 7-10% of the total feed.
Soil rich in microorganisms is also a given.
Rice husks make up 15-20% of the feed from late Feb to mid May to hold down the laying rate. It can make up as much as 25% to maintain steady laying rate ( 65-70% for 3 years ).

Mixing homemade feed. Rice husk, bran, wild grass, oyster/clam shells, food waste, soil, sawdust,etc. Almost anything can be fed.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

NF chicken housing-no smell, no emission, no cleaning, no disease

NF chicken housing is designed carefully utilize the nature's power and to suit the habits, instincts and behaviors of the residents ( Chickens!)

* Roof and wall

The roof has a window. The roof window allows sunlight to come in and the sun light will always shed light on 1/3 of the floor throughout the day. This bright area shifts as the sun moves, and the whole floor gets a chance to see the sun once ( and is disinfected). The ratio of 1:2 of sun and shade is also ideal for microorganisms to grow.

Roof is made from galvanied zinc sheet which is a good heat conductor. The roof becomes hot so does air beneath it. The hot air escapes through the window and cool wind comes in from the open walls (convection). The wind takes away moisture from the floor, controlling the dampness. The walls are made of net at the front and back and has curtain to control air flow.

* Floor

Floor MUST be touching soil. Chop rice straw in 3 cm length and cover the floor at depth of 7 cm (3 cm for broilers). The soil floor with straw carpet mixes with enzymes on the straw, nutrients in chicken feces, microorganisms and NF inputs (FPJ, LAB, IMO,etc). Air convection povides ideal moisture level on the floor for the IMOs. From April to November, the floor dries up easily so spray water 1-2 times week ( this may differ depending on the regions)
Because IMOs are active in the floor, they break down chicken feces. That is why the chicken house has no smell. Chicken feed on the fermented products of their feces. You do not remove the feces, continue rearing for 10, 20 years without cleaning. Just take it out when you want fertilizers. Take out only 1/2 of the fermanted feces because removing them completly may have negative effect on the chickens. That is why you have no waste,wastewater,excretions to go treatment.
All treatment is done on the floor. The floor is feed producer,fertilizer factory and waste treatment plant.

These information is from Master Cho's NF book

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The three principles of NF poultry

*The three principles of NF poultry

First, floor of chicken housing should be soil. Never use concrete. Part chicken from soil, you will bring diseases.

Second, do not artificially control temperature. Even for small chicks, fermentation heat of compost will suffice. Do not give heating with machines.

Third, feed whole brown rice graines after they hatch. Give bamboo leaves to strengthen the intestines.

* The three purpose of NF poultry

First, poultry farming and agricultural should  complement each other.
Chickens provide food and manure while agricultural by-products are used as their feed.  Agricultural by-products from 10a of land will make up 85% of total feed. Chicken feces will be used as fertilizer. Animal and crops are  interdependent,and the farming household can acquire food self-support and lower the cost.

Second, poultry farming fosters the harmony among family members. It lets each family member ranging from the elderly grandfather to primary schoolchild, present his or her own idea and opinions, and work together upon the consensus. Indeed, NF poultry needs only moderate labor for production. A family shoul work together and through work,form a close relationship.
Nowadays, poultry is completely commercialized; the only purpose is profit.

Third, NF poultry rehabilitates the surrounding environment. It enriches your fild, brings nutrients to your table and helps the community economy. As you practice NF poultry, cooperate and share with your neighbors.