Feed for Dual Purpose Chicks


8 Years
May 14, 2011
Plant City, Hillsborough County, FL
I have been raising Delawares for a couple of years now. I have always followed the standard schedule for switching to grower feed without any problems, but I read recently that the LF heritage breeds should be raised on a higher protein feed. My Delawares have not filled out as well as I have liked in the past, and I've always attributed it to genetics, but now I am starting to wonder. When do you switch the large breeds over to grower feed?
Two schools of thought and I'm afraid you'll just have to try one way or the other and see what you think. Some say feeding high protein during the juvenile weeks causes sped up maturity of muscle mass and early POL onset before the pullet is fully matured and skeleton is ready.(see virtually all raising guides from hatcheries producing top laying strains for commercial houses) Others believe the high protein creates a healthier look and much better feathering of birds, especially those heading to show.

You've tried one way, might want to try the other see what you think.
There are some lines of Delawares that do not live up to the high standards of a good dual purpose breed. Some of the birds I have had in the past did not fill out that well, and the hens did not lay as well as I wished for. My birds from sandhill preservation have been some of the best I have had. I use a grower/finisher and they fill out well.

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