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16 week old hens...

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by ChookHappy, Nov 13, 2009.

  1. ChookHappy

    ChookHappy Dances with Chickens

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    Hey everyone, our 8 hens of various breeds are now 16 weeks old and we have ran out of their medicated chick crumbles. We will be going to the feed store tomorrow and I'm looking for suggestions. We had a 50 lb. bag of one brand and was at this point going to get a 10 lb. bag of the med crumbles which is a different brand and a 50 lb bag of the organic laying pellets and introduce a dish of crushed oyster shell to the run. I was going to acclimate them to the organic over the course of the next week or two or until the 10 lb bag runs out. Am I on the right page here or should I adjust my projected approach? Will the new brands be rough on them in the transition? When we moved them from the first 10 lb. to the 50 lb. brand originally they seemed to do fine as well as the transition from when we got them at 11 weeks. They seem to be troopers so far but it still concerns me. [​IMG]
     
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Some say it is best to slowly switch over... but I'm the type who just buys the new feed and pours it in when the old stuff is out. Be it 16 weeks or 22 weeks old when the time comes to get a new bag of food.
     
  3. Daisygirl

    Daisygirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Same here, but I was nervous when we switched them to a new feed at 7 weeks. It was just fine, but if I had done the transition properly I would have saved a lot of sleepless nights. [​IMG]

    The worst that could possibly happen is that it would go right thru them for a day or two...so long as you keep their fluids up, you're sweet either way.

    Do you feed them potatoe, carrot, brocholli offings, etc on a regular basis? It could be a good extra to their diet if you don't want to buy old feed, so their feathery tummies don't get overloaded.

    If it concerns you, and you're willing to spend the time and money on it, then go ahead with you're plan...but if you have 3-5 days worth of old feed, mix it with new (and scraps if you feed it to them). If not, just go and chuck it in like silkiechicken and I did. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2009
  4. ChookHappy

    ChookHappy Dances with Chickens

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    Ok excelent! Yea we ran out of food in the bag a few days ago and have been waiting for a day off to go into town. What we had kept them at bay for the time being but we do feed them baby spinach, apples, corn on the cob, tomatoes and other random things pretty often as a suplimental thing. I think we will go ahead and ditch the 10 lb. and just get the 50 lb. as the chooks really have been eating anything we have given them. All but pears, iceburg lettuce and carrots. They like the carrot tops but not the carrot itself. Thank you very much silkie and daisy for posting. I'll stop putting too much thought into it.
     
  5. Daisygirl

    Daisygirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Tell them to quit being fussy about carrots!!! I'd just nuke the leftover carrot in the microwave/stove with a bit of water - - softens it so they can peck at it more...
     
  6. ChookHappy

    ChookHappy Dances with Chickens

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    Oct 12, 2009
    Petaluma, Ca
    LMAO yea getting them to a consistency that they can actually eat might help. I threw whole raw carrots out there and they looked at me like I threw them a stick to fetch. BTW the chooks really took to the new feed. It isn't organic but they go through 50 lbs. fairly quick so I'll look into gettin some good organi feed next month. I get a day off both my jobs too today so maybe I can finish their new coop!
     
  7. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    They don't really need the medicated crumbles past about 8 weeks of age. In fact, I've heard that it is not good for them to have the medicated feed after that time - not sure of the reasons. Its also not a good idea to feed the layer food until they are actually laying. If I were you, rather than get a 10# and a 50# bag of foods that aren't ideal for them at this interim stage, why not get a 50# bag of Flock Raiser (or equivalent). It will be perfect for them now and they can continue to eat it after they are laying. If they start laying while you're using that bag, the next bag you buy could be the laying feed. If not, I'd still with the Flock Raiser until they do start laying.
     
  8. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Overrun With Chickens

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    I also thought that you are suppose to stop the medicated feed at 8 weeks old. I usually switch mine to Gamebird feed, until they start laying.
     
  9. Daisygirl

    Daisygirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Congrats and good luck!!!
     
  10. juliawitt

    juliawitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, All purpose flock pellet are the way to go for this stage. When I integrated my babies with my 2 layers, I tried to keep the baby crumbles seperate from the layer crumbles....Guess how well that worked....NOT! The babies gorged on layer pellets and the big girls ate the medicated baby food. Too much calcium for the babies and medication for the layers. NOT GOOD! So, on advice that I got on line here, I switched to multi purpose flock pellets with free choice oyster shell. Worked like a charm! The big girls grab some oyster every few days, and the little girls don't touch the stuff. Everyone is healthy and sassy! When the little girls get closer to laying (they are 13 weeks) I will switch everyone to layer pellets and be done!
     

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