Grower vs. layer feed

Jlgonzo

Chirping
Nov 2, 2018
57
49
91
North Alabama
I have 8 chickens that are 4 different breeds. They are 17 weeks old. One laid an egg (first egg of the flock) yesterday; a small one but perfectly fine. They are still eating Grower feed. I have read that Layer feed can cause health problems for those not laying. I am wondering how I need to feed the flock with one egg layer. Should I continue finishing the Grower feed until more are laying, switch to layer feed or mix the two?
 

Melky

Spring has sprung!
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
4,154
20,245
962
Edgewood, KY
I would say if you have chickens that are laying it is ok to switch from grower to layer feed at 18 weeks but some suggest switching over slowly. As in do 1/4 of feed for day with new layer feed and 3/4 old feed x3 days, then switch to 50/50 for few days, then 3/4 new feed 1/4 old feed for few days, then 100% new 16% layer feed. Also poultry grit and oyster shell on the side free choice. etc. I wouldn't throw out any old feed continue feeding till gone.
 

GC-Raptor

Free Ranging
Jul 26, 2016
5,017
9,184
621
Connecticut, USA
This time of year you can continue feeding Grower feed till all are laying.
Offer Oyster Shells in a separate container.
I am currently feeding an All-Flock feed to my 31 month olds.
I am finishing up a Start & Grow feed for my 11 week olds and will switch them over to the All-Flock feed.
My older girls feather pick on a 16% Layers feed.
I recommend a 18 to 20% Protein for a Backyard flock of chickens.
If your Grower feed is within that percentage, you could feed continuously. GC
 

ChickenCanoe

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Nov 23, 2010
32,948
27,444
1,077
St. Louis, MO
I second what the others have said.
Once they are laying, offer oyster shell in a separate container, no matter what you feed. I think it is a good idea to mix the feeds till most are laying then you can switch over to all layer. Mixing half and half will net about 2.5% calcium which is about what commercial operators use as a pre-lay diet. Not enough to hurt anyone but enough to build up calcium stores in the medullary bone.
Keep in mind that as days get shorter for POL birds, you never can tell when laying will commence.
 

Jlgonzo

Chirping
Nov 2, 2018
57
49
91
North Alabama
This time of year you can continue feeding Grower feed till all are laying.
Offer Oyster Shells in a separate container.
I am currently feeding an All-Flock feed to my 31 month olds.
I am finishing up a Start & Grow feed for my 11 week olds and will switch them over to the All-Flock feed.
My older girls feather pick on a 16% Layers feed.
I recommend a 18 to 20% Protein for a Backyard flock of chickens.
If your Grower feed is within that percentage, you could feed continuously. GC

Thanks for the info. Is it ok to have the oyster shells available to all the chickens that are not laying?
 

GC-Raptor

Free Ranging
Jul 26, 2016
5,017
9,184
621
Connecticut, USA
Thanks for the info. Is it ok to have the oyster shells available to all the chickens that are not laying?
Yes, you can offer Oyster Shells separately at 16 weeks with Poultry Grit also separate.
My newest Flock 11 weeks old have Poultry Grit outside. 20181019_092454.jpg . I will offer Oyster Shells inside near the feed in 5 weeks. GC
 

RoostersAreAwesome

Crossing the Road
May 21, 2017
9,272
25,875
932
You could just continue feeding grower with oyster shells on the side. That way, you don't have to switch feed if you have any younger chickens, or when they're molting.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom