Healthy acting 5 month old pullets wont eat - why? ? ?

math ace

Crowing
10 Years
Dec 17, 2009
6,678
124
296
Jacksonville, FL
I have two 5 month old wyandottes that have stopped eatting their laying mash. WHY?

They are acting normal. They are in a cage separate from the others and have been so for two - three months.

The only thing new that I have done is switch them from chick starter to laying mash about two weeks ago.

Are chickens picky about their food? Will they protest a change in food?

Any ideas why healthy acting chickens stop eating?
I live in North Florida. Temperatures are between lows in the 30's and highs in 60's.
The pullets show no signs of being ill.

They might be getting close to the point of giving me my first egg. Could this make them stop eating?

I would appreciate any ideas. . . .
 

OrpingtonManor

Building the Castle
11 Years
Nov 15, 2008
2,890
14
201
Martinez, CA
then I'm stumped. Did you change feeders? I know I'm grasping at straws, but when I moved my chicks from their little red waterer to the metal Little Giant, they couldn't find the water until I put the little red one next to it. I love 'em, but they're not too bright.
 

Manok-Tao

Songster
10 Years
Jan 6, 2010
295
12
121
W-S NC
Is feeder in the same place?
Dirty?
Has anything been moved, added around the feeder that may be intimidating the birds?
Is the new food fresh, no mold, spores, bad smell, evidence that it got wet?
Did you wean the new food by adding an incresing percentage of it to the old food over a few days?
Have you been feeding them something in supplement that they want intead of their feed...like heated mixed mash on cold mornings, scraps in excess?
just thoughts that might help
 
Last edited:

math ace

Crowing
10 Years
Dec 17, 2009
6,678
124
296
Jacksonville, FL
I didn't wean them - - - I didn't think it would be an issue.

I store the food in my garage - - - so it is mildew free.

I feed them in their hutch - - - so it stays out of the weather.

I do give them pieces of bread in the afternoons as treats. Could they be refusing to eat their laying mash all day because they are waiting for their bread treats?
 

Manok-Tao

Songster
10 Years
Jan 6, 2010
295
12
121
W-S NC
Quote:
I have 19 week old pullets (8) that I give a mixed heated mash on mornings when it's been really cold (lower than 30) the mash is made up of their crumbles, scratch, oats, and stale cereal...soaked in water for 10 minutes then nuked for a few till its steamy. they do "cry for it in the morning". When then don't get it i have not noticed a significant drop in usage from the feeder.
I will begin adding laying pellets to their food this weekend. At first I'll put a few handfulls of the Layena into a towel and smack it with a hammer to break it up a bit. This will help with the transition from crumbles to pellets and the increasing percentage will wean them to the new feed...................that's my plan, worked last time so I hope it will again
 

math ace

Crowing
10 Years
Dec 17, 2009
6,678
124
296
Jacksonville, FL
Anybody else ever seen signs of healthy chickens who stop eating their food?

Anybody else have chickens that seem picky about their food?
 

Sissy

Songster
12 Years
Jul 18, 2007
2,764
16
191
Sevier county, Tn.
You could be giving them too much treats, I only give treats every Wednes day.
You dont have to wean chickens.
I just stopped the chix starter and gave them leyana
either one crumbles or Pellets.
and they have been fine..as long as they have all the water
they can drink.
 

Siler

Songster
9 Years
Jan 25, 2010
298
2
121
Central Indiana
I've never fed a mash before. Is that what it sounds like? Does it look like oatmeal? Is it wet?

What if you tried adding crumbles, birdseed, etc on top of the mash so that they have to eat a bit of mash along with the treat on top? That trick works for my dog if I switch his food or he just wont eat. Yesterday I hid a pancake(his favorite treat) at the bottom of his food bowl, but dogs work on sense of smell where birds are visual. If they see you putting the treat on top of the mash then maybe they'll eat it even if it's on accident at first.
 

MANNA-PRO

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