how much chick starter to buy


9 Years
May 2, 2012
Hello all.

the breeder I'm dealing with was expecting the chicks I ordered to hatch this past weekend, just sent an email asking if the hatch completed successfully. So I expect to be getting 6 Wyandottes this week.

I bought a "chick kit" from TSC last week and it came with a small bag of chick starter but I'm sure I will need more feed real soon after getting the chicks.

So my question is how much Chick Starter will I go through with 6 chicks to feed? On the one hand I don't want to end up buying 10 5lb bags of chick starter when one 50lb bag would have done the same job at less money. On the other hand I dont' want to buy a 50lb bag of starter then only use 20lb of it.

So is there a "rule of thumb" that I can use to estimate how much starter I'll need to raise these 6 chicks?



6 Years
Feb 14, 2013
Western NY
My Coop
My Coop
I had 6 chicks 20lbs of food in 6 weeks.

good luck!

We are picking a few more today to make our flock a whopping 13, a Jersery Giant, Welsummer, Barbanter, Ancona, and Salmon Faverolle. We alraedy have a barred rock two silkies and 6 amber sex links. I think this will be a nice mix and will keep us well supplied with eggs, compost, and lots of great antics!

Don't forget to post lots of pics!


6 Years
Apr 4, 2013
I have just three chicks and so far I've only used less than half a bag of 10lb chick start. That's two weeks worth of feed for my chicks. Granted they eat other things like chick grit and treats such as boiled egg.

I went on the lower side because like you I didn't want to buy a huge bag of chick start and end up not needing it, but honestly I think you could just use it anyway. If I'm not mistaken it just has more protein than grower or layer? The back of my bag says to move the chicks to grower once they're 9 weeks old. I may be able to scrap by without having to buy another bag of starter, but we'll see. They're 4 weeks old now and will transition to the coop this coming weekend where they can hopefully forage for bugs etc.


In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 14, 2012
Southern Massachusetts
I have 6 red sex-link chicks that are now 8 weeks old. I started with a 10 lb bag,which barely lasted 2 weeks. The second was a 50 lb bag and they are right on schedule to finish it by the 10 week mark(this is how long the instructions said to feed them starter). If you have a full-sized breed, then I would say go for the 50lbs, keep in mind they consume a lot more as they get bigger. I'm now slowly mixing in the "finisher / grower" with the remaining starter feed, to gradually make the change to new feed. It says to feed them the "finisher grower" until they reach 18 weeks of age, so I bought 50lbs of that feed as well. Good luck.


In the Brooder
Mar 30, 2017
i got a 50 lb bag of 24% protien starter at TSC. for 8 hens and 2 ducks on sale for $15.99. that shoulld be more than enough to takethem to lay mash. add chick grit every day, about 1/4 cup on top to prevent poopy but forming around the vent.......


5 Years
Feb 19, 2017
Don't put grit on their food, use a separate container, to offer it to them. It doesn't keep pasty butt away, it is to help digest (grind) food other than regular chicken feed.


Mar 11, 2017
Frederick, Maryland
We purchased two 5-lb bags when we got our six Black Australorps. They were 1-week old when we got them. They're 4-weeks old now, and we're just finishing the second 5-lb bag of starter feed. We picked up a 20-lb bag today.

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