Chick starter ok for grown chickens?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by farmerbrowne, May 22, 2017.

  1. farmerbrowne

    farmerbrowne Chillin' With My Peeps

    Howdy all, I have three one year old chickens and 8 two week olds. Is it going to be detrimental if I feed all chick starter? Or should I be running two different Feeds? I don't want my baby chicks to not get enough nutrition but don't want to harm the grown birds either. Any advice would be great
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs I Wanna Be A Cowboy Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    I feed a non medicated starter grower year round to my bantams. Keep a separate dish of oyster shells.
  3. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

    Jan 14, 2012
    Conway SC
    If the chicks are in the same yard as the others, I use a piece of 2x4 wire to create a place to feed the chicks that the chickens can not get into. I feed the chicks first then feed the adults. Always worked good.
  4. brucifer

    brucifer Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have cockerels and pullets mixed in with one group of older hens. I put layer pellets out for the hens and starter for the younger birds, and wouldn't you know; they younger birds go for the pellets and the older hens go for the starter. Ideally, it would be better if things were the other way around.

    What I do with my hens is supplement their diet with crushed eggshell. It's not the ideal set up for this group, but so far all the birds are healthy and thriving. Best of luck.
    casportpony likes this.
  5. azygous

    azygous Flock Master

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Next time you're in the feed store, read the ingredients labels on chick starter and Purina Flock Raiser (an all flock feed). They are practically identical. In fact, the Flock Raiser has more protein. There have been times when the feed store was out of the all flock feed and I bought chick starter to feed to my flock.

    If you normally feed layer feed to your hens, you would then want to buy chick starter to feed any new chicks since the high calcium in layer isn't good for growing chicks. So, it would be entirely acceptable to then feed chick starter to both chicks and laying hens until the chicks start to lay. At that point, you could go back to feeding layer feed, or continue to feed chick starter with a side of oyster shell so the layers get the calcium they need in order to build eggs.
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I also do not feed Layer to my flock, ever, since I'm almost always integrating. You can't keep the younger chicks out of the Layer. My broody hens will scoop food out of elevated feeders for their babies. By two weeks the chicks are flying up there to feed themselves.

    When the chicks are pretty young everybody gets to eat a Starter. Usually around 4 weeks I switch everybody to a Grower, whenever that bag of Starter runs out. I always have oyster shell free choice on the side for the ones that need the extra calcium for egg shells. The chicks and rooster will occasionally eat a bit of oyster shell but not enough to harm themselves.
    casportpony and brucifer like this.

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