Hen eats chick starter but not layer feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Mavrik, Jun 19, 2011.

  1. Mavrik

    Mavrik Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 15, 2011
    I have a 3 year old hen that is recovering from an impacted crop. It's been like pulling my own teeth to get her to eat anything lately. She got into the chick area while I was feeding the chicks and she will eat chick starter crumbles but not layer crumbles. Between the two feeds, the color and size are identical.

    Can anyone tell me why?
  2. flnatv

    flnatv Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 7, 2011
    West Tennessee
    Maybe there is something in the starter that her body is wanting/needing.... like when we crave dairy product for calcium???
  3. scratch'n'peck

    scratch'n'peck Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 31, 2008
    West Michigan
    My Coop
    That is odd. It is as if she craves the higher protein. Or maybe the chick starter is a little fresher?
  4. kesali

    kesali Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 27, 2011
    far northern Wisconsin
    They may be identical to you, but not to her for some reason. Maybe if you tried mixing them together. Start with a little of the layer and each time mix a little more in.
  5. Mavrik

    Mavrik Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 15, 2011
    Still doesn't explain why she refuses the layer feed (crumble or pellet), she has been eating layer pellets for years.

    Protein, not less than 16.0%
    Lysine, not less than 0.55%
    Methionine, not less than 0.25%
    Fat, not less than 2.5%
    Fiber, not more than 7.0%
    Calcium, not less than 3.25%
    Calcium, not more than 4.25%
    Phosphorus, not less than 0.5%
    Salt, not less than 0.3%
    Salt, not more than 0.8%
    Vitamin A 3,000 IU/lb
    Vitamin E 10.5 IU/lb

    Chick starter
    Protein, not less than 18.0%
    Lysine, not less than 0.88%
    Methionine, not less than 0.32%
    Crude Fat, not less than 3.0%
    Crude Fiber, not more than 5.0%
    Calcium, not less than 0.75%
    Calcium, not more than 1.25%
    Phosphorus 0.6%
    Salt, not less than 0.35%
    Salt, not more than 0.85%
    Vitamin A 5,000 IU/lb
    Vitamin E 14 IU/lb
  6. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

    Apr 22, 2008
    upstate SC
    Mine like to eat it and I certainly let them.
    I provide oyster shell and they will eat some starter and layer mash. I have a few old birds that need the extra vitamins and minerals that are eating starter regularly.
    I find that layer has such a bare minimum of nutrients that they prefer the starter.
    I also will sometimes pour a bit of wheat germ oil over the food and that helps in many areas of the body. Better feathers, helping to move foods through the crop and some also has vitamin E, which is what I usually get.
  7. sammyh312

    sammyh312 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2011
    just let her eat the starter. i still mix that with layer every day w/ no problems.
  8. ChickenAl

    ChickenAl Diagnosis...Chicken-Headed

    Jun 5, 2011
    Putnam cty, NY
    I just switched our pullets from pellets to crumbles. I switched the brand in the process and they are eating it like it was candy compared to the other organic feed. I left both out there and they would not touch the pellets once the crumbles were available. I even mixed them and they picked out the crumbles. When they are ready to lay I am going to use layer crumbles. I really think they do not like pellets. The difference in feed may also have something to do with it, but they were never big pellet fans and liked it less as they got older. Odd, but that seems to be what has happened.

    Still experimenting with brands, pellets or crumbles. Right now it is the Nature's Best grower crumbles that the ladies like best.
  9. sammyh312

    sammyh312 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2011
    chickenAl...same thing with me. Mine wont touch pellets to save their lives. But, ive been mixing the pellets i have left with crumbles and it seems to be slowly disappearing. either way, when pellets are all gone, im going back to MG crumbles. 50 lb bag of pellets was given to me and i thought, hey great...but found no way theyll eat it. MG crumbles are always good, no issues with them but didnt like my last bag of layena.
  10. EggyErin

    EggyErin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 2, 2011
    N. Ga mountains
    Maybe the grass is just greener....

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