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Feeding older chicks layer feed??

post #1 of 2
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I got to reading on here that it is bad to feed chicks layer feed.  And what I mean is 3 month old chicks.  Obviously not day-old chicks. Because, whenever my hen hatched out chicks, she would care for them until they were about 2-3 months old, so I would move them in at with the rest of the flock at about 2 and a half months old, and they just ate the layer feed like the rest of the hens and roosters.  Am I not doing the right thing?  I guess I'm just worried my young ones won't develop right or something...I haven't had a problem yet though...All ten chicks that my hens hatched out this  year are all laying or mounting the hens, so...And they're all a good size and weight(I think?)  No one's skinny or anything....I just hope I'm doing everything right.  I guess I'm kind of new at this..I've only had chickens for 2 years....

post #2 of 2

The problem with feeding chicks and other non laying chickens layer is that it is higher in calcium then they need.  That excess calcium can cause problems with their kidneys (stones and scaring).  Since layer contains every nutrients that they need there should be no other problems with their development at ten weeks.  Ten weeks is a little young yet for the pullets to be able to handle the extra calcium.  However if they are getting a lot of other food then the extra calcium's damage will be mitigated.   Most avoid the problem by switching the whole flock over to a lower calcium feed with a calcium supplement on the side for the laying hens.

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