Did I get wrong info on feeding my chicks?

The Ladies' Mom

Chirping
9 Years
Oct 14, 2010
5
9
62
We're new to rasing chickens and relied on our local farm store to help us know what to do. We fed starter food to our 6 chicks until we ran out (20# bag), which took just a few weeks - after which we were advised to go ahead and feed Layena crumble. We also feed "extras" such as berries, watermelon, greens, etc. and our ladies are semi-free-range as well. They're now 4-1/2 months old and seem quite healthy. Somewhere on BYC I read that they should be on starter feed for 20 weeks or so? Was our farm-store adviser mistaken, and have we harmed our ladies in any way?

We're also new to BYC (and blogging!) and hope we're doing this right...
Thanks!
 

bburn

Songster
9 Years
Jul 9, 2010
1,668
23
143
Delaware, Arkansas
You're new. You can type a search for it above and to the right. A lot of different threads will come up but you will find the information you need.

And yes....you need them on chick starter longer. Go search....

(there is so much information on here that will really be helpful to you! I know it was for me!)
 
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maizey

Songster
9 Years
Feb 23, 2010
670
8
131
Deep in the heart of Dixie
Hi! I did a search for you to get you started, you can click on the link below...Id answer the question outright for you if I knew for sure, but im new at this myself.
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Hope it points you in the right direction.

https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?pid=4944618
 

PunkinPeep

Songster
10 Years
Mar 31, 2009
3,642
70
229
SouthEast Texas
Normally a starter or a starter/grower is fed until they are old enough to lay - or have already begun laying.

The reason to wait is that layer feed contains higher amounts of calcium that the younger birds may have a hard time metabolizing, so it can be hard on their kidneys.

I would expect that your girls are not laying yet, and you might be able to feed them another bag of flock raiser or some grower feed before they start laying. That might help to give their kidneys some relief before you put them on layer feed for actual laying.

Oh, and one more thing, you're not the first one to learn this lesson: very well meaning and kind feed store employees and owners, very often have no idea what they're talking about - or simply give very bad advice. Most of us have had to learn that lesson at least once.
hugs.gif
 

Imp

All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle
11 Years
Sep 7, 2008
14,453
180
318
The Emerald City
My Coop
My Coop
You already got good answers, so I'll just say

Welcome from an imp in Washington

You came to the right place to get your questions answered

Imp
 

Frannabelle

Songster
10 Years
Jun 1, 2009
307
3
121
MI
I have several different ages in my bantam flock, from 1 month old infants (which my broody hen hatched and is raising) to adult birds. I have everybody on flock raiser and once a day a bowl of scratch. Every day they also get veggie or fruit treats from me, sometimes meat and they are all free ranging in the yard. I throw handfuls of calcium grit in the coop run, so the girls can pick at it. It seems to be a good system for me and all are thriving.
Next year maybe the madness will cease, and I'll stop new babies from hatching and go to layena, but I doubt it!
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