Chicken Vitamins?

Chick2chicken

Songster
Mar 19, 2017
170
52
106
Canada
Hello!
I've heard of this thing... Chicken vitamins? used for healthy feathers, stressed birds and apparently just normal chickens also used in the winter. We're still experiencing some chilling weather here and I thought I could give my girls boost. Do any of you use chicken vitamin supplements? Are they safe? Should I even consider using them? Do they really?
Thanks
Chick2chicken
 

sylviethecochin

Free Ranging
Jun 14, 2017
5,499
11,305
701
Central PA
I don't use vitamins unless I'm collecting eggs for setting. I supply B-vitamins and vitamin E to my chosen breeders, especially early in the spring. Chicks are a lot more vulnerable to vitamin deficiencies than adults are, and I prefer to do everything I can to ensure a good hatch rate with no problems.

But since I free-range, I've never been particularly fussed to provide the vitamins that they get when they eat dandelions. (And I strongly believe in feeding dandelions and spinach, if the hens are cooped up for any reason. Great plants with lots of vitamins.)
 

GC-Raptor

Free Ranging
5 Years
Jul 26, 2016
5,554
11,148
671
Connecticut, USA
My hens are 23 months old and have survived two winters in the negative teens Fahrenheit with nothing but feed, water and scratch grains/mixed bird seed year round twice a day as a treat scattered on straw, 3 times a day in sub freezing temps.
I have my first bottle of Nutri-Drench unopened, bought over a year ago. It expires March of next year, when I will have to replace it. Best to have and not need.
As chicks I gave them nothing but Start and Grow feed for the first eight weeks. I put them outside at 5 1/2 weeks and they had access to grass, weeds and bugs, so I bought a bag of chick grit.
At eight weeks they got their first treat from me, scratch grains.
Fresh feed has all the vitamins/minerals they need and quality feed also has probiotics and prebiotics, read the label. If the feed does not list probiotics on the label, I don't buy it.
As long as the majority of what they get from you is fresh feed and water. They should be fine with out additional vitamins. Of course if one or more is lethargic, vitamins and other treatments may be necessary. Keep a bottle on hand at room temperature and replace when it expires. GC
 

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
27,065
917
CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
I don't use vitamins unless I'm collecting eggs for setting. I supply B-vitamins and vitamin E to my chosen breeders, especially early in the spring. Chicks are a lot more vulnerable to vitamin deficiencies than adults are, and I prefer to do everything I can to ensure a good hatch rate with no problems.

But since I free-range, I've never been particularly fussed to provide the vitamins that they get when they eat dandelions. (And I strongly believe in feeding dandelions and spinach, if the hens are cooped up for any reason. Great plants with lots of vitamins.)

I also provide extra vitamins to my birds, especially when conditioning them for breeding. I have found that when the birds have added vitamins, their egg quality is improved. IMO, calcium is not the bottom line of shell quality. Nor can one expect that a formulated feed provides the BEST nutrition.
 

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