Do you feed your roos layer feed?

DesertGrrl

Chirping
Sep 24, 2020
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Does that also mean that hens not currently laying shouldnt be on layer feed either?
That's correct.
Feed layer feed ONLY to hens that are laying.

It's best to feed an All Flock feed with a seperate container of Oyster shells for the laying hens (they will eat the oyster shells when they need it).
 

EmmaRainboe

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Jul 30, 2020
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Well cool I'll fix this problem next time I go to the feed store, though of course i just went
I had the same thing happen to me a few weeks ago, I went to the feed store and got layer pellets then same day found out roosters and non layers shouldn't eat them, after I finish these bags I'm planning on starting on all flock feed 🙈 Luckily I'm already half way through.
 

jwehl

Crowing
Nov 3, 2020
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I had the same thing happen to me a few weeks ago, I went to the feed store and got layer pellets then same day found out roosters and non layers shouldn't eat them, after I finish these bags I'm planning on starting on all flock feed 🙈 Luckily I'm already half way through.
Mine have all been eating layer from 4 months on for years, sooo a month or two longer will be fine.
 

EmmaRainboe

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Mine have all been eating layer from 4 months on for years, sooo a month or two longer will be fine.
Yeah I'm a first time chicken mama so they haven't been on it very long. I had just switched them over, and I started them on it when most of them were 6-7 months some a little younger so I don't think it will have affected them to much, I just assumed oncwe you get some laying you give them layer feed, so once I got one laying I switched them over, unfortunatly only 2 others have started laying as well but that's a whole other thing 🤣
 

jwehl

Crowing
Nov 3, 2020
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I don't feed mine layer feed. I feed All Flock to my six hens and one cockerel with free choice oyster shell. They also have access to the compost and eat all the eggshells.

I found this thread (starting with this post) very insightful, especially posts by @EggSighted4Life : How do you feed your roosters?
Oh that post is amazing, Thank you.

Also layer could be why my pullets havent started yet, whoops!
 

jwehl

Crowing
Nov 3, 2020
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Regardless of age and sex, a bird not laying eggs is not a layer.
Therefor, shouldn't be eating layer feed full time.
yeah so I had previously thought there was just grower feed for meat birds and layer feed for egg birds, but obviously that's not the case.
 

ChickenCanoe

Crossing the Road
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Nov 23, 2010
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yeah so I had previously thought there was just grower feed for meat birds and layer feed for egg birds, but obviously that's not the case.
There are all types of feed. The significant differences between them are protein percentages and calcium percentage.
All you have to do is read the instructions on the bag. Every manufacturer formulates their feed for a specific species, age and sex. They always have feeding instructions so one knows what birds the product is intended to feed.
As you noted, the most common are starter/grower and layer feed.
But there is a meat bird feed for broilers.
Starter/grower is for all young chickens 'starting' and 'growing'.
There are also game bird starter (usually 28-30% protein) and game bird maintenance feed (about 13.5 % protein).
There are also waterfowl feeds that usually contain more niacin.
If someone is going to raise any type of livestock, it is imperative they understand the nutrient requirements of their chosen species and find a feed that contains those levels.
Just because a chicken is a female, that doesn't make her a layer. When she is actively laying, she becomes a layer. When she is still growing or takes a winter break, she is not a layer because she isn't building egg shells - hence the increase from 1% calcium in all other feeds to the 4% in layer feed.

When in doubt, read the instructions on the bag.
 

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