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22% Protein Layer Feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by churchx3, Sep 8, 2010.

  1. churchx3

    churchx3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I feed my girls a 22% Super Layer Pellet...do I still need to keep the oyster shell free choice? I also feed them eggs/yogurt/fruit, etc. weekly. Just want to be sure they are not getting too much protein.
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Oyster shell provides calcium for shell formation -- no protein. Usually layer feeds are a little short on calcium, but I don't know the proper percentages.
     
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Quote:The 22% feed is plenty enough for them, regular feed is 16% which is enough for them. IMO adding extra protein from yogurt and eggs weekly is unecessary.
     
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Ddawn hit it. You have two different issues here.

    Oyster shell provides calcium. Layer is formulated to have enough calcium so that you do not need to add any more calcium if layer is all they are eating. If they are eating other things that provide calcium, like dairy products, hard shelled bigs, certain green plants, rocks for grit in limestone country, such as that, they are probably getting plenty of calcium. If they are eating things other than layer that do not provide extra calcium, they may need a calcium supplement. I go by my egg shells. If the egg shells are hard, they are getting enough calcium. If the egg shells are soft or thin, they need more.

    Normal layer for chickens contains 16% protein. I wonder if that 22% layer is meant for game birds, not chickens? If 16% layer is all chickens eat, that provides them enough protein and other stuff they need to lay efficiently. If they eat a bunch of stuff low in protein, then an additional protein source is a good idea. If you are feeding a feed that is higher than 16% protein, I'd suggest you feed them other stuff low in protein to kind of balance it out. If they are getting too much protein, their internal organs (not sure if it is the Kidneys or liver) has to filter it out of their system. Scratch is a good example of something lower in protein, but I don't like to feed much scratch due to the high energy content. Too much scratch can make them fat which leads to other health problems.

    Don't get too stressed out by what I've said. The margin of error is pretty big on this. These are not targets you have to hit exactly, just general targets to aim for. Chickens are pretty tough and adaptable.
     
  5. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    You're correct Ridgerunner, 22% is gamebird feed. I've used it before and only feed it to my chickens for a few days after a worming cycle. My regular crumbles are 16% protein and has 4% calcium in it. I have a container provided free choice calcium if they want it. I was thinking the same as you that too much protein isnt good for their system and could have adverse effects. I dont even bother giving mine scratch lol.
     
  6. HLAC

    HLAC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think the reason why most chicken layer feed is 16% is because that's the minimum you can get away with and still get eggs. Higher protein levels really only hurt the pocketbook - The more protein in the feed, the higher the cost.
     
  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    It is a cost efficiency thing. They have found that chickens are most efficient at laying at 16% protein. Anything more and you are wasting money. I know that doesn't matter to a lot of people. It does to me. Less and they don't lay as well.

    Some people think that more is better, if they need 2 of this, I'll give 4. Their body has to work to get rid of any excess. I don't like to work their liver or kidneys any harder than necessary. I can't see their liver and kidneys. I don't know when they re getting damaged. I notice when I get a blood test done for my physical, there are ranges for practically everything. Too low or too high means something is out of balance and either lowor high can indicate a problem.
     
  8. churchx3

    churchx3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:The reason I started on the 22% was because when I switched to layer I read that pellet form was less wasteful then crumbles. I also read that you do want animal based protein in your feed...so I set out to find an animal based protein in a pellet form and this 22% super layer was all I was able to find at TSC and the local feed store. I do feed a couple handfuls of scratch each afternoon when I let the chickens out to free range as well as cantalope, watermelon. I fix a yogurt/egg/garlic/molasses concoction once a week that I read was good for their overall well being. I also put ACV in their water. I leave oyster shell out for them to pick at when wanted. I do not want to overdose on protein here, just trying to raise them healthy and happy. I used to give them poultry conditioner when they were on starter/grower but discontinued that when I started the 22% super layer. Do you think I am harming them with this amount of protein?
     
  9. Yard full o' rocks

    Yard full o' rocks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Churchx3....where are you located in Georgia? I am in NW Ga and get a 16% layer PELLET at the local feed store made by Tucker Milling which is over in N Ala.
     
  10. churchx3

    churchx3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yard full o' rocks :

    Churchx3....where are you located in Georgia? I am in NW Ga and get a 16% layer PELLET at the local feed store made by Tucker Milling which is over in N Ala.

    Big city of Hiram, GA:D
     

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