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Are they ready for layer feed?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by ChickenToes, Jun 24, 2008.

  1. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    My feed store sells feed that's labeled Chick Starter/Grower. That's what my birds have been eating since day one, they're now a little over 10 weeks old.

    But now I'm having a lot more pecking problems, and I'm thinking they should be getting more protein. But my only other option is to give them Layer feed, that's all the feed store has.

    Can I give them half starter/half layer?
     
  2. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

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    Jan 30, 2007
    WV
    Nope, thats my opinion...Layer is not good from them that early and it does not have as much protein and nutrients as they need for growing out more til they lay...Layer has too much calcium in it for youngsters...I keep mine on Starter/Grower til they are at point of lay or laying before I switch them to layer feed.....
     
  3. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    Dang...now I remember reading on here somewhere about layer feed not having as much protein as starter. But I also read that giving them more protein helps stop pecking, so what can I give them?
     
  4. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    7,505
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    Jan 30, 2007
    WV
    Sunflower seeds, canned cat food, scrambled eggs or boiled are good to give back to them for protein.....

    I've never had pecking problems... Do they have enough room to find other interests other then pecking issues?....
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008
  5. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    Thanks for the help! I'm going to the feed store tonight, so I'll see about picking up a bag of those black oil sunflower seeds.
     
  6. Big_Charlie

    Big_Charlie Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 27, 2008
    Fulton, KY
    Mine are about the same age. Following the suggestion in "Storey's Guide to Raising Chickens" by Gail Damerow, I've started adding oats to their starter feed to help slow down their growth a little so they don't come into lay too early. Eventually, before moving them to layer, they'll get up to 50/50 ration-oats. I also toss out a little bit of scratch grains for them to peck at too. Anyone else do it this way?

    Big Charlie
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008

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