Feeding

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by ILMCHICKENS, Jul 30, 2011.

  1. ILMCHICKENS

    ILMCHICKENS New Egg

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    Jun 21, 2011
    Ok... So I know that there is no "Exact" amount to feed chickens but I would like to know "About" how much to feed them a day. I have 3 chickens... 2 Light Brahmas:D and 1 Penedesenca.... also I would like to know how much to feed 5 chickens... because I am going to be adding 2 RIR's to my flock [​IMG] and also.. at what age do you stop feeding chicks starter feed... and do you just feed them Layer/Scratch immediatly after Starter crumble. [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  2. nurseshelly

    nurseshelly Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 24, 2011
    Gilbert AZ
    Quote:Ummm, I just keep my feeders full at all times. With 8 large chickens and 5 bantams, we go through about 50# every two weeks or so. You will want to do starter or flock raiser until they are over 18 weeks old. Then you can either add oyster shell in a coop cup for them to eat when they need it, or change to a layer pellet.

    I like the flock raiser better than the chick starter because it's got higher protein. Also my chickens seem to love it. Then I just put oyster shell in each coop for the extra calcium.
     
  3. ILMCHICKENS

    ILMCHICKENS New Egg

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    Jun 21, 2011
    DO you know anything about intergrating the new chickens in with the older girls??
     
  4. nurseshelly

    nurseshelly Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 24, 2011
    Gilbert AZ
    Quote:A lot of people will have the two groups in pens near by to see each other.

    What I've done in the past, which has worked for me:
    I just bring the new chickens (at least 2 of them, and usually about 8 weeks old or more) into the side yard where everyone free ranges. I'm there to supervise and see how the intro goes. I let them hang together for an hour or more if things are going well. I keep doing this every day for a few days. Once the big chickens are ignoring them most of the time, I wait until they are roosting and add the new chickens. So far they just accept them like they were always there, except for a little pecking, but not much.

    As long as they are free ranging, and the new birds have a place to get away from the others, it works out well. I always to at least a week of trials of mixing before I put the new ones in the coop at night. Then of course we watch them pretty close for a few days.
     
  5. ChickenAl

    ChickenAl Diagnosis...Chicken-Headed

    Jun 5, 2011
    Putnam cty, NY
    Quote:The "about" has been listed as 1/3 cup per bird per day according to what I read, if they are also free ranging. Mine eat more than that and feed it left out all day for them. My birds are not fat and they seem to be healthy.

    Read the label on the bag and it sometimes tells you when to switch to layer. Check the internet for that brand also. Mine says to switch to layer at 16 weeks or as soon as they start to lay.
     
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Northwest Arkansas
    You have a whole lot of options. The only rule is do not feed Layer to growing chicks. The extra calcium in Layer can cause bone or internal organ damage in growing chicks. You only feed Layer after they start to lay or you can start at 20 weeks if they have not laid yet.

    You can look on the bag of feed. Most of them tell you at what age you should switch and what you should use. But those are not laws of nature, just suggestions for maximum efficiency if that feed is all you are feeding them. They do fine in other circumstances.

    The "normal" progression is to feed them Starter (normally around 22% to 24% protein) for the first 4 to 8 weeks. Then switch to Grower (around 16% protein) until you switch to Layer (around 16% protein). But many of us don't do it exactly that way. And this is for flocks that will be laying flocks. If you are raising meat birds, the feeding is different.

    It really does not matter if you switch from Starter to Grower at 4 weeks, 8 weeks, or somewhere in between. You can even go past 8 week some, but I don't like to use a feed that high in protein after that age. In my opinion, the best time to switch from Starter to Grower is whenever you run out of Starter after their 4th week.

    But many of us cannot buy feed like that. Straight Starter is not available here. What I can get is a combined Starter/Grower that is 20% protein. You can feed that from Day 1 until you switch to layer.

    There is also a 15% Grower/Developer available. You can switch to that around 13 weeks until you switch to Layer.

    Sometimes you can get a 20% protein Flock Raiser. Many people feed that. It is intended for flocks that have some chicks in it that will be used for meat and some that will become layers, but many people use it for pure laying flocks.

    So you can see that there are a lot of different options. Other than feeding Layer with the extra calcium too young, they all work. And some of us feed Grower or Flock Raiser instead of Layer, especially when we have young chicks mixed in with a laying flock. We just offer oyster shell on the side for those that are laying and need the extra calcium for the egg shells.

    There have been some studies that show feeding real high protein levels to a flock that will become laying hens can damage them, but we are talking about protein levels quite a bit higher than any I mentioned. 30% is the threshhold for internal damage that I have seen. As long as you don't get silly with it, you have a lot of flexibility in how you feed them.
     
  7. sargent spurs

    sargent spurs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 24, 2011
    VA
    [​IMG] About five ounces a day per chicken. [​IMG]
     
  8. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    Ohio
    Quote:Large fowl or bantams?

    Chris
     

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