Holy feed starter, Batman!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Breezy_Living, Jun 6, 2011.

  1. Breezy_Living

    Breezy_Living In the Brooder

    May 19, 2011
    Northern California
    About a week or so ago, I started noticing my 3-4 week chickens were starting to REALLY get their feathers and over the last 5 days just doubled in size! Of course this is expected but when they're your babies, you're just like, "Holy smokes... when I brought you home you were all just little fuzzballs!"

    And the other noticeable symptom of a growth spurt? (I have a 3.5yr old son, so I know the signs... *lol*)

    They're going through it SO. FAST. NOW.
    They weren't going through much everyday so I was filling accordingly and they'd go through a couple tbsp a day... no big deal. When I went out to the shed -- ahem -- their humble abode for "last call" (change water, refill bedding for the night, add more food) I was shocked and amazed that they went through almost 3/4 cup in a day!
    They're still on chick starter from the feed store; when would be the best time to switch their food? I will keep them on starter for as long as needed but I just want to make sure, since they're almost coop ready and feathers are coming in everyday, that they're getting the nutrients they need.

    Oh yeah, and we still haven't named them yet. [​IMG] They're starting to show individual personalities, so by coop time they should be labelled accordingly!
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2011
  2. gale65

    gale65 Songster

    I've read to keep them on starter until at least 2 weeks after they start going outside (on a regular basis). I hear you about the food. Our girls are about 11 days old. I fill the feeder, which holds a quart, and by the end of the day it's down to where it's all in the bottom part and none in the jar part. I even put a page on my blog that shows comparisons from different ages. It's crazy how fast they grow. We try to take pictures and/or video every 3 or 4 days but even they they change so much.
  3. Breezy_Living

    Breezy_Living In the Brooder

    May 19, 2011
    Northern California
    I've been taking photos about once a week too! Even in the last couple days they've grown more feathers!
    I just moved them to the coop today and kept the door closed so they couldn't get out. They seem to be big enough to "fly" up on the side of their cardboard box though I'm glad they're smart enough not to go far from their bedding and food/water area! The coop just gives them more room to spread their wings... not to mention easier to clean out because they just love tossing bedding into their water! *lol*
  4. I'm1chickencuddler

    I'm1chickencuddler In the Brooder

    May 31, 2011
    I read and heard to keep them on chick starter until they are fully feathered. It has the extra nutrients a growing chick needs and a dose of antibiotics to keep them from getting sick. I am on my third 50 lb. bag of chick starter. This will probably be my last one. My girls are all pretty big and almost fully feathered.[​IMG]
  5. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Crowing Premium Member

    Chick starter doesn't normally have antibiotics. Sometimes, if you buy medicated, it has a cocci blocker. It's your choice whether to feed the medicated or not.
    There is an old saying. Chicken eat everything and everything eats chickens.

    The only thing you shouldn't feed a chick is layer. Layer has high calcium that is needed by layers, but only healthy for layers.

    Otherwise, when raising the chicks, you can feed them Raiser, Starter or Grower. They'll eat it just fine and be healthy.
  6. stcroixusvi

    stcroixusvi Songster

    May 5, 2011
    Western NC
    My Coop
    Why don't you check the package or the company that makes the starter? We use Countryside Organic chick starter and they recommend switching to a broiler/grower feed at 6-8 weeks, then layer feed when they start to lay eggs. I am now on my second 50lb bag! They do eat a lot.

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