Does layer mash have everything my hens need?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Frizzlett98, Nov 16, 2014.

  1. Frizzlett98

    Frizzlett98 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I found a new feed store just 2 miles from my house and am planning on buying feed from them tomorrow. Last week we went to check out the place and see what he had. He has laying mash but my grandfather asked him "Does the laying mash have the stuff in it for the hens to produce shell?" and the man said no. That we'd have to buy oyster shell. My question is, does it have what they need. If it didn't have what they needed to make shell, it wouldn't be called "layer" mash. He's not very educated about chickens. Example- He thinks coccidiosis is a respiratory infection. So I'm planning on buying 50lbs of layer mash and maybe 50lbs of cracked corn since I have roosters in with my hens that don't really need laying feed. I'm going to try to find something they can all eat instead of buying 2 different things. Like right now, they are eating Purina flock raiser which is perfect. But I can get everything much cheaper at this new feed store. Around 70lbs of feed for the same price as a 50lb bag of Purina. Thoughts? I also have 3 month old chicks and 4, 5 week old ducks. I have plenty of Flock Raiser for the chicks and ducklings for a while.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2014
  2. Percheron chick

    Percheron chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If it's a layer feed than it would have adequate calories, protein and minerals notably Ca for a laying hen. Just read the label. It should have around 4% Ca. No harm buying a bag of oyster shells or feeding back egg shells to bump the Ca even more. If it's easier to just feed on type of feed, just stay with the all flock and buy oystershells for the Ca.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2014
  3. Frizzlett98

    Frizzlett98 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The hens are laying really good with the flock raiser just the shells are a little thinner since they've been on purely layer feed. The shells are perfect now. They were a bit tough to crack on the layer feed. I think he'll probably have something like the flock raiser, he just doesn't know it. It doesn't do any good explaining protein to him... or antibiotics for that matter. I'm going to take a good look around before I make my decision but his prices are great. So I'm hoping I can find something there. [​IMG]
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Purina flock raiser doesn't have enough calcium for layers, but is great to feed to all ages and genders of your flock while providing oyster shell(cheap) for the layers in a separate container.

    Cheaper feed can mean less nutrition...any chicken feed should have an ingredient and nutrition levels label on it. If he doesn't know the protein level, I wouldn't buy anything from him.


    I like to feed an 'all flock' 20% protein crumble to all ages and genders. Makes life much simpler to store and distribute one type of chow that everyone can eat and have calcium available at all times for the layers, oyster shell mixed with rinsed, dried, crushed chicken egg shells in a separate container.

    The higher protein crumble offsets the 8% protein scratch grains and other kitchen/garden scraps I like to offer.
     
  5. Frizzlett98

    Frizzlett98 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've decided to keep buying flock raiser and buy oyster shell from him.
     
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    I've been feeding my flock, now all hens, Flock Raiser for years with oyster shell as free choice. I haven't bought a bag of layer feed in five years, and there's no problem with eggs.

    In fact, early on, as I was trying to do the impossible juggling act of feeding the chicks this feed, the roosters that feed and the hens their feed, I discovered everyone prefers the taste of Flock Raiser over layer feed. If you put the two side by side, watch your chickens ignore the layer ration. The extra protein in the Flock Raiser, or any meat bird ration, apparently adds a lot of extra flavor that chickens notice.
     
  7. Frizzlett98

    Frizzlett98 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree. They all eat the Flock Raiser really well. Better than any layer or chick starter feed. I have a 50lb bag of laying mash which I guess I'll mix in with the Flock Raiser for my older ones until it's gone. Then it'll be just flock raiser, oyster and egg shell. Thanks for all the replies!
     

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