Hens and chicks feeding

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by WestKnollAmy, Jun 16, 2008.

  1. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

    Apr 22, 2008
    upstate SC
    I have 3 hens and one of the hens has her chicks running around with her. They are 4 weeks old and free range during the day and are cooped at night. I have start n grow in the coop for them to eat on anytime they want but would like to get eggs again and wondered how everyone changes the hens back to laying pellets while keeping the chicks on the start n grow. I tried having a hanging feeder but the chicks just flew up to it and was sampling the pellets. I prefer they eat theirs as it is nutritionally incorrect for them to eat laying pellets.
    Will the hens lay on starter?

    Thanx everyone!
  2. Anne

    Anne Songster

    Feb 11, 2007
    Bellingham, WA
    I have the same issue, my main problem is that my adult chickens like the chick starter too much and won't eat their own feed (which I keep up higher where the chicks can't get to it as easily). They still lay OK even when they're eating chickie food, though not as well as when they're on lay pellets. You'll probably want to make sure the chick starter is unmedicated, though, or you (and anyone you give or sell eggs to) will be eating antibiotics in their eggs.

    P.S. There's a few ways your post could be interpreted -- one way it could be read is that you're trying to get your broody laying again also. Just FYI, most broody hens don't start laying again until they're done mothering their chicks.
  3. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

    Apr 22, 2008
    upstate SC
    Thanks Anne,
    No, I'm not feeding medicated feed.
    I don't care if the broody hen lays right away but it would be nice to have those other two girls going again. I think they have decided to not lay since they feel they are helping raise those chicks. They were broody also but I took their chicks since they were trying to kill them. Funny, they don't try to hurt these.
    So they may start laying even on the start n grow. I just wanted to make sure since I have no way to put any out for them.
  4. blue fire

    blue fire Songster

    May 2, 2007
    Murfreesboro, TN
    I have a chickless hen that eats chick starter, but she seems fine. I just feed her extra egg shell. I have heard that it is not good to start your chicks on layer until they start laying eggs.
  5. Ellie

    Ellie Songster

    Aug 10, 2007
    Redding, Ca.
    Didn't I hear that the Purina medicated feed would be ok to feed to the hens laying? It lacks something or has a different kind of medication in it?

    Hopefully this is a yes.... someone set me straight here.

  6. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    Ellie, Purina feeds are medicated with Amprolium, a thiamine blocker, to aid in fighting cocci. There is no problem with hens eating feeds that have Amprolium. Some other brands have things like Bacitracin and Erthopobate (sp?) in addition to Amprolium, but not Purina.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2008
  7. Ellie

    Ellie Songster

    Aug 10, 2007
    Redding, Ca.
    Thanks, Cyn. You are always a wealth of information. I cannot give my girls their own food now, it is in bowls everywhere so the little ones can get to it without being pushed away by the bigger ones.

    Appreciate it,
  8. raindrop

    raindrop Songster

    Feb 10, 2008
    Western Oregon
    You can put out a dish of oyster shell to provide calcium for the hens, just put it out of chick reach.

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