How to feed two different stages of "chickenhood" in one coop?!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by hokankai, Oct 23, 2010.

  1. hokankai

    hokankai Songster

    May 18, 2010
    SW WA
    So I've been considering adding new chickens to the coop...but it looks like I might be getting some pullets that are already laying. My girls are only 4 months old and are on Developer feed. How on earth am I supposed to feed one group Developer and the other group Layer feed?! Does it matter what everyone eats? Thanks!
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2010
  2. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Songster

    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    First--Quarintine!! After that you can feed them all grower, flockraiser, or gamebird (whatever is easiest for you to get) and put oyster shell out freechoice so the ones that are laying can meet their calcium needs. I feed gamebird to my mixed age/species flock and have been very happy with it.
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    What Kittymomma said.

    I do not feed different feeds to my flock of many different ages (well, except for the chicks in the brooder, those I feed chick starter until they are 8 weeks old, then put them into a grow-out coop).

    Grower/finisher feed for all, and free choice oyster shell. The laying hens/pullets do just fine, eggshells are nice and hard.
  4. hokankai

    hokankai Songster

    May 18, 2010
    SW WA
    ok great! i was trying to figure out what the oyster shell was for [​IMG] thanks again!
  5. mandelyn

    mandelyn Crowing

    Aug 30, 2009
    Mt Repose, OH
    My Coop
    I buy layer pellets and a high protein grower, both in 50 pound bags. I have a plastic garbage can that I bought new for the purpose of storing feed, and have husband hold one bag while I hold the other and we dump it in at the same time to mix it. So everyone gets the same thing, mixed. If my babies are old enough to live with the big girls, they're old enough to have mixed feed.

    Haven't had to add oyster shell, I have it on hand for any issues, but right now my shells are perfect. I was adding it from the start on my last flock, but my eggs had issues. Thin shells, soft shells... things I hadn't seen before. This time I haven't added it, but I bought it anyways just in case. No issues, no supplements.

    I also shop the mark down rack at the produce store to get them tomatoes and greens.
  6. woodmort

    woodmort Crowing

    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    Always feed to the younger birds with supplemental oyster shell free choice to the older ones, that way you aren't giving the younger birds things they don't need that could be harmful to them.
  7. PepsNick

    PepsNick Back to Business

    May 9, 2010
    Egglanta, GA
    All of the above, AND make a seperate pen in the coop for the new girls. That way you can actually FEED them SEPARATELY.
  8. hokankai

    hokankai Songster

    May 18, 2010
    SW WA
    Why do they need to feed separately? If they're going to be integrated into the group they're gonna eat together too
  9. fldiver97

    fldiver97 Free Ranging

    Aug 5, 2009
    Middleton, WI
    My Coop
    No need to feed seperately if you use the advise from OPs...just make sure you have a container with crushed oystershell available at all times so the layers can supplement what they need in calcium. Grower/flockraiser is OK for all but the little ones. Maybe the separation advise was in regards to integration......Some like to use a 'barrier' during introduction so chickens can be in same area but not hurt each other until they adjust to the newbies. If you have questions about introducing/intergrating chickens, there are quite a few posts on the topic as well. As far as feed is concerned I think you already got great advise [​IMG]

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