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Use for overripe corn and the husks

Discussion in 'Pasture, Hay, & Forages: Information & Management' started by mystang89, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. Aug 11, 2017
    mystang89

    mystang89 Loving the herd life

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    Sorry this is the most appropriate spot I could find on the forums. If it's not right please feel free to move it.

    So I'm a new farmer. Never grown corn before this year and didnt know how to tell the corn was ripe. Turns out the corn was too ripe and now it's all chalky tasting. So instead of throwing them out I want to be able to do something useful with them.

    I have sheep, rabbits and chickens. Can the overripe corn be used with them somehow? Sweet feed or something?

    What about the corn husks. Can these be used for bedding or anything else? I know that the stalks can be chipped and used as bedding and in some cases even used as food
     
  2. Aug 11, 2017
    CntryBoy777

    CntryBoy777 True BYH Addict

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    There are a few things ya can do.....is it sweet corn or field corn?......to use as feed it needs to be dried in order to process it.....tho, chickens will eat at any stage. Ya may want to research making hominy, which can be eaten as a vegetable with a meal....also, used in gumbo or soups. I have seen the whole dried ear....husk and all....ground for winter feed for cattle.....and can really be used as most any animal feed. Just be sure if it is goats or sheep that ya add a little at a time, and if ya have wethers limit the amount because it could increase the UC chances, also with bucks too.
     
  3. Aug 11, 2017
    Baymule

    Baymule Herd Master

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    Dry corn is an animal feed. Your sheep and chickens will love it, don't know about the rabbits. I would use it as a treat feed rather than feeding just the corn. Shuck the corn, spread it to dry and when completely dry, it can be rubbed off the cob using your thumb. Put the husks in the chicken pen and they will compost them for you. Or you could buy a grain mill and make your own corn meal like i just did. LOL

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Aug 11, 2017
    mystang89

    mystang89 Loving the herd life

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    I like the corn meal idea!

    As for what type of corn, it's sweet corn. If I let it dry and use it as feed is there anything I need to add?
     
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  5. Aug 11, 2017
    CntryBoy777

    CntryBoy777 True BYH Addict

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    I wouldn't think so, if fed as a treat.....some crack it before feeding, but not sure if it really matters. Sweet corn is small kerneled anyway.
     
  6. Aug 11, 2017
    Baymule

    Baymule Herd Master

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    My sheep, chickens and ducks get whole corn as a treat. I had a ewe that i weaned twins off of that wasn't getting back into shape. She had given everything to her lambs, so i started giving her a cup of corn every day and she fattened back up. I hand fed it to her over the fence so I didn't get climbed like a ladder by the other sheep. LOL
     
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  7. Aug 11, 2017
    goatgurl

    goatgurl True BYH Addict

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    friend of mine brought me 5 feed sacks full of corn on the cob that I doled out to my chickens, ducks, goats, sheep and the pig. they all loved it. I didn't have to take it off the cob only pulled the shucks back and they cleaned it all up nothing left but the dry cobs. I wouldn't give the sheep more than 2 or 3 ears at a time but yup, for sure feed it to everything but the rabbits. i'm not sure what it would do to their digestive system.
     
  8. Aug 12, 2017
    greybeard

    greybeard True BYH Addict

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    The only issue I can see in over ripe corn for animal feed might be nitrates, and I'm not sure about that as long as they have other things to ingest as well.
    Cracking/steaming/rolling aids in the digestibility of grain as well as improved drying.

    I am no longer in favor of feeding whole cob to any large livestock. A choking hazard exists. We used to do it all the time with cattle and horses, but I just don't any more.
     
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  9. Aug 12, 2017
    mysunwolf

    mysunwolf True BYH Addict

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    I agree with not feeding the whole cob/ear corn to anything. But shelled whole corn is actually better for sheep than cracked corn in an intensive operation, in that it lessens the chance of them getting clostridium, acidosis, or general scours when you're feeding a large portion of the diet in grains. Studies with lambs showed that the small amount of digestibility gained with cracked corn wasn't worth the processing or the risks to the lambs.

    So overall, I'm not sure that it really matters one way or the other on a small farm when it's just a treat.

    We haven't ever done anything with the husks other than compost, but I'd be interested in trying to chop them for bedding, sounds like a great idea.
     
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  10. Aug 12, 2017
    mystang89

    mystang89 Loving the herd life

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    This is all great stuff! Thanks. Almost makes me want to "forget" next year's crop as well...... almost, but that sweet corn is just too good! Lol
     
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