Feeding 14 week old Buff Orpingtons

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by SouthShoreCoop, Jun 9, 2016.

  1. SouthShoreCoop

    SouthShoreCoop Just Hatched

    10
    0
    14
    Jun 9, 2016
    South Shore Ky
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,699
    2,648
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    NO.
    14 weeks is too young for layer feed.
    Layer feed is approximately 4% calcium and intended for birds actively building egg shells.
    All other feeds are 1% calcium. 1% is appropriate for young birds, roosters and any hens not laying eggs like molters or older hens.
    You can hold on to the feed and perhaps mix it half and half with a grower feed when they hit 18 weeks to make a pre-lay diet.
    When all are laying, then you can switch them to layer feed.
    Did the person you got them from or a feed store employee recommend layer feed?
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2016
  3. SouthShoreCoop

    SouthShoreCoop Just Hatched

    10
    0
    14
    Jun 9, 2016
    South Shore Ky
    No, It wasn't recommended by anyone, it's just what I picked up from TSC. I'm going to head there today and get new food for them. Thanks!
     
  4. Sea2Ski

    Sea2Ski Out Of The Brooder

    41
    2
    24
    May 9, 2016
    Southeast PA
    Mind if I jump in and kinda hijack the thread? It is along the same line...

    My dozen birds are 12 weeks old. I have been feeding them "Start and Grow" since day one. The are mostly penned up, but do get to free range 2-3 hours a day. I have 4-5 days worth of food in my 50lb bag. Another 50lb bag will last me quite a while. I am going to get more feed this weekend. Think I can mix the balance of what I have now with with a 25 lb grower pellet feed and then when that bag gets near 20% remaining, mix and switch to a layer pellet?
    That would put them (I am thinking) on (mostly ) grower at about 13 weeks and layer at about 20/21 weeks? OR should I just get another 25 lb bag of start and grow then switch right to layer?

    Had chickens for 13 years, and this is the first time I started with chicks from scratch. All the feed them this and that when they are this old and that old is confusing me like crazy!!!!
     
  5. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,699
    2,648
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    It's fine by me to jump in.


    Don't let it confuse you too much. Other than feeding layer too early, it is hard to mess this up.
    Other than slight differences in vitamins and minerals, the only real difference between feeds is protein % and calcium %.
    Start & Grow is 18% protein. Likely the grower feed is also 18% protein.
    If grower is 18% there's really no difference other than the size of the crumbles.
    If it is 16%, that may make a difference. Young birds need more protein. As they approach full size, they don't need as much.
    Be careful with scratch and treats that may cut the overall protein% too much.

    I like to stick with 50# bags cause they're cheaper per pound.

    For the OP, almost every bag of feed has a chart on the back with all the manufacturers feeds listed and the ages appropriate for each product. If you had read that chart, you would have chosen the right product initially.
     
  6. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Overrun With Chickens

    Layer feed to young will cause kidney problems. I use a flock raiser and provide oyster shell on the side for layers. No layer feed until you see your first egg. Different breeds start laying at different ages, White leghorn and sex links as young as 16 weeks. Barred rocks as late as 24 weeks. Even with layer feed, I would provide oyster shell on the side. Since I sometimes have chicks, roosters, or hens molting at different times... all flock works best for me. And I like that it has a little more protein than layer. I think it helps feather growth.

    BTW, I actually use fermented feed and highly recommend it!

    Good luck with your new flock, and... [​IMG]
     
  7. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Overrun With Chickens

    You didn't say how many chickens you got, but I always go with 40 or 50 pound bags even if I only have 3 chicks. As long as you provide calcium when they start laying it won't be a problem. Also, it is ok to mix with your next bag if you decide to switch.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by