Posted: Sun Jan 08, 2006 3:47 pm Post subject: ReCycle Seed?
What do other breeders do with old seed?
There is very little if any info about this in books or the 'net, yet seed is expensive
We purchase seed in 40kg sacks, both as a basic mix and individual seed types.
We use deep seed trays,about w weeks supply that is then topped up for the next week.
As the level gets sround the 1/3 to 1/2 we then remove all the seed in the tray and start again
What is removed is a mix of seed, husks, the odd feather.
Birds will not foul the trays and water dishes (unless they are placed under a perch)
We then take the removed seed and store untill I have 2 or 3 sacks (40kg)
It is then sieved thru a home made sieve into 3 lots
1/ Sunflower seed and husks 'float' to the top of the sieve and scrapped off
2/ The small stuff goes thru the sieve
3/what is left in the sieve...this is generally rather husk free.
1/ and 2/ are then put thru a home made wind row, each separately that removes any husk, feathers and rubbish the sieve has not done so.
The recovered seed then has individual new seed types added to make up into new mix....A little is kept separate for finch seed
This can be a time consuming job, any ideas to make quicker and more effient...Im working hard at being lazy again _________________ My Spelling is Not Incorrect...It's 'Creative'
There ia a product on the market called a seed winnower. An old vacum cleaner is attached to the side of the machine and old seed poured in through the top. The vacum cleaner is run in reverse and this air pressure blows the husks into the cylinder whilst the heavier whole seeds are cleaned and drop through a seperate chute into a container. The principle works well and is often used to clean seed which has a lot of foreign matter in it.
Personally I dont like using recycled seed as this can be dangerous. Some disease can be transmitted via the old seed and even the best cleaning methods will not prevent that from happening. I am always at a loss to hear that some "top" breeders remove old seed and winnow it before feeding it to their "lower" priced stock. I am afraid I dont discriminate on price factor and all our birds get the same regardless of value.
We have experimented for the past few years on different seed mixes and have almost reached the point that there is effectively no wastaqe apart from husks. That can take a lot of time also but if you buy seed in individual bags and mix only the seeds that the majority of your flock eat then the wastage does become minimal.
I give old seed to our Quails and Pheasants as I have read that like Chickens their digestive system are far more robust than parrots and they are able to handle far more bacteria in the crop.
I suspect kakariki are probably closer to chickens than parrots when it comes to tough digestive sytems.
I also quite often dump old seed in the garden (where the wife allows) in summer and let the seeds germinate. After a couple of weeks, I pull out the resultant plants and feed to the birds roots and all.
We also have upto 50 doves and hundreds of wild finches a day visit for the left overs under the suspended aviaries. Sad how many the cat catches.
Our seed is clean, with just husks and the odd leaf/feather.
We have experimented for the past few years on different seed mixes and have almost reached the point that there is effectively no wastage apart from husks.
We have also done this.
Personally I don't like using recycled seed as this can be dangerous. Some disease can be transmitted via the old seed
We keep the old seed for several months before recirculating. That way if any sick birds/mites etc arise we don't recycle Cleaning is only done 6 to 9 months, with old seed stored in sacks in dry environment (spare bedroom in the house)
Keep in mind...our Kakariki are wilds, there is no market for them in NZ, and no DoC approval to release them to Conservation organisations, so at the end of the day there is no income/profit, and are simply killed before over crowding takes place.
The apparatus http://www.mastecbase1.com/pht/indexhi.html that Peter mentions...I have seen similar home made ones like this, they tend to be slow (rem we are doing 1 1/2 to 2 40 kg sacks at a time)
I have come up with this out of an old fish tank...This is about Mk III version .
The flat board on the very left just sits there, it can be moved creating a air gap between it and the main top. This adjusted for the weight of the seed/husks I found having an even gap right across the width of the box behind where the seed is fed in produces a more effective separation.
The dividers in the 'tank' are just pieces of cardboard box folded and can be moved for different seeds.
As diff seed and their husks are diff weights over a wide spectrum to get effective separation of husks/seed some sort of pre separation has to take place (this can be done in the windrow but takes to long and not as effective as using a sieve.)
The hose is an old vacuum cleaner on suck
The red bowl is my sieve is my sieve. Again experiments with different sieves/holes etc. has resulted in this and are quite happy with it. (Still have to drill more holes in base and around the sides...Portable drill battery went flat and haven't got around to finishing them off )
To MT out...
Seeds: these are scooped out with a small square jug (a round one doesn't get the last of the seed off the bottom well) made out of an old screw container.
Husks: I pull out the vacuum cleaner, carry the whole thing out to the gardens , and simply tip the husks out as a mulch. I get very little growth, as Allen mentions, wild birds get into it and finish off any seed that may remain.
_________________ My Spelling is Not Incorrect...It's 'Creative'
Is it perhaps something that was written in one book and the authors of newer books just believe it ti be true or have tests been done?
Like the one "Carrots help u see at night" sure carotene or something like that in carrots is good for the eye sight...That started when the Poms put out a rumour they feed their pilots carrots to see the other planes. So the Germans pulled up their crops, grew carrots that take a while to grow, then winter hit, bad crop and really messed up the German war effort. And the story still sticks today 60 yrs on. There are still health books perpetuating the theme _________________ My Spelling is Not Incorrect...It's 'Creative'
The theory on testing the quality of seed does have it's merits. We sprout seed which is fed daily and every so often I will take some of the dry seed mix and also sprout it for comparison.
It has led us to change our seed supplier as a result. We sprouted the dry seed and after 48 hours less than half had actually germinated. It also developed a mould and looked terrible. I changed suppliers and ran the same tests but the results were a significant improvement.
The problem here in Australia is that we have had droughts in the seed growing regions and as a result the price of seed has gone up dramatically in the past few years. At the same time the quality suffered as a result of the drought and some suppliers were selling very poor quality seeds at ridiculous prices.
By shopping around and running the sprouting experiment we have been able to find the best seed at a competitive price.
The spouted seed we use is alfa/mixed bean/mustrad thats used for sandwiches from the supermarket.
We tried the recycled stuff and new a while back..Im sure we where doing something wrong, or temps???
What method do u use to sprout your mix?
How long does it keep?
And as a test for quality seed...sounds so logical...
Im now wondering if the reason for the need to recover is because of the quality of our seed...and want to find out now just how viable the seed is we recover..could be a total waste of time if the recovered seed is no good. _________________ My Spelling is Not Incorrect...It's 'Creative'
I pay R110 per 25kg bag for sunflower at the moment, highest price yet was R145. R120 equal about US$20. I think roughly 40 Aussie Dollars.
Seed is usually fresh and of a high quality. I sprout sunflower about once every two weeks just to check. Seed takes longer to sprout in colder conditions. I am not a great fan of sprouted seeds as I tend to work funny hours and seed dries out or goes mould too often if not checked and rinsed frequently. I much rather grow seed in the garden and feed the whole plant. Probably not as nutritious as sprouts but it has plenty of fun value for the birds.
Steps / Allen,
Sprouting seed is one of the easiest tasks we have. We are now so well organised that we sprout new seed just as the current sprouts are being used up. It takes 36 hrs to get the sprouts just right and with the right equipment it is no trouble to do.
We purchased a food warmer display cabinet (the type you see on shop counters with hot food inside) and modified the thermostat to run the cabinet at 25 degrees celcius. The seed is rinsed and soaked in water for the first 12 hours and then rinsed and placed in the warming cabinet for 24 hours. Perfect sprouts every time
We sprout enough to last about a week. The surplus is kept in a sealed plastic container in our fridge. I will take some pics next time we sprout and post them with a step by step process in case anyone else wants to try this method. It can be done without the warmer but we like to know the sprouts will be ready in a set time frame.
A new thread for that?
Any diff between the seed being sprouted in light and dark?
What seed types do u sprout? thinking in terms of diff seeds may sprout at diff rates
Anyone tried other seed types...beans, peas mustard, alfa etc?
For 40 to 50 Kakariki about how much seed /batch? roughly eg cup full?
ppl may not realise, but when a visitor goes to a web site info from ips to pages they visit, screen resolutions operating eystems, browsers used and how they get to the web is logged.
With the resent posts on feeding, sprouting, hybrids, keeping in flocks etc we are getting hits from several NZ Gov servers and organisations. Hopefully the info they are learning will be help conservation effits in NZ, and cut back on poor stds due to ignorance that currently exist. _________________ My Spelling is Not Incorrect...It's 'Creative'
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