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Change in layer feed...

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by catlikethief, Dec 31, 2008.

  1. catlikethief

    catlikethief In the Brooder

    May 13, 2008
    Portland OR
    Our local feed store is out of our normal 16% layer crumble, they sold me a new brand that's made locally (pretty cool in my opinion!) but it's 19% .

    Is that too high?
    Will it throw off my hens diet?

    I tried searching but kept getting an error msg.

    Thanks for any help!

  2. spook

    spook Songster

    If you are in a cold climate it could work out to your advantage. I agree with buying locally too! I'm writing to give you a bump up so someone that knows more can see it! Good luck!
  3. digitS'

    digitS' Songster

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    It is tuff to say if this new feed will throw them off production. Do they like it?

    These protein ratings are a little hit-or-miss and we are talking about crude protein, anyway. It becomes a question of how well can it be digested by the birds and also, how well is it balanced (amino acids).

    Protein is a little more difficult for the body to metabolize than carbohydrates for energy needs. They need more calories in the Winter and can actually get too much protein by eating, eating, eating. So, you've kind of gone in the wrong direction for the time of year. Still, it probably isn't enuf of a change that way to make any difference.

    Do you feed other foods? This may be the time to increase the treats a little. Give them an extra handful of their scratch, for instance.

    Any of the old formula left so you can make the change more gradual?

  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    When my own are molting badly, I use a 22% Super-Layer the co-op has. It makes a world of difference at that time! Usually, I use 16% and sometimes, from a different feedstore, an 18%.
  5. Brown Egg Project

    Brown Egg Project In the Brooder

    Dec 22, 2008
    Central Kentucky
    Sometimes a percent or two change in protein can cause diarrhea. In your case by going up I would probably do as digitS' post and add a little more scratch to compensate for the increase in protein. Happy New Year!
  6. catlikethief

    catlikethief In the Brooder

    May 13, 2008
    Portland OR
    Thanks everyone!

    I put the food out for them last night, mixing 50/50 (old&new).
    It's raining like crazy today so I doubt much food will be consumed. There's more important things like getting wet and hunting worms!

    Happy New Years everyone [​IMG]

  7. Charlene1234

    Charlene1234 In the Brooder

    May 11, 2008
    What do you consider scratch? My mom is feeding cracked corn along with pellets and they seem to eat more of the corn than the pellets. I've never fed corn before though. They get to eat whatever they want and they choose the corn more than those pellets. They seem to lay alright.

    I'm in Eugene area and it's been raining all day here too. [​IMG]

  8. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Corn is scratch. I never feed scratch in with the layer feed. They'd just dump the proper food on the floor to get to the goodies, the corn. And you can even cause malnutrition in the birds by feeding that way, especially if they cannot freerange to get other nutrients.
  9. imfowl

    imfowl Songster

    Dec 17, 2008
    Yes, its not good to mix cracked corn with the layer feed. I did it to cut feed costs, and the chickens just threw the layer pellets out and ate all the corn. This soon led to impacted crops and skinny chickens. It is best to just supplement with the corn.
  10. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Corn is scratch, but there are better quality scratch mixes, too. I use an 11-grain scratch that is 13% protein and has almost NO corn in it. Basically, it's a rooster feed. They can eat more of that, yet not lower their protein levels too much.

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