ideas on separating chicken food for age appropriate feedings

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Loving My Peeps, Nov 19, 2010.

  1. Loving My Peeps

    Loving My Peeps Chicken Whisperer

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    Aug 19, 2010
    Central, Maine
    I have 11 laying hens and 1 rooster in my coop. I moved my brooder out there 2 weeks ago when the babies were 5 weeks old ( from Meyer hatchery: 2 Welsummers, 2 Cuckoo Marans, 1 Andalusian). I have been leaving the top of the brooder (wooden box with hardware cloth facing) open for the little ones to get some freedom. They can leave the coop but they usually just stay in there and play during daylight hours. I have my adult birds on Blue Seal layer crumble, and the younger ones I switched over to Purina Start and Grow (non medicated). The big birds will mostly chase the babies away from their feeder and the babies happily eat their own food. Every once in a while I will catch them eating each others food. The layer crumbles has too much calcium for the babies and I know can be harmful. Th Start and Grow doesn't have enough calcium for the adults so how can I find that happy medium? Since my adult birds free range all day the babies are having a blast outside of the brooder and I don't want to separate them now. They all get along fine and at night I have all the babies sleep inside the brooding box and close the lid so they are safe when everyone is in for the night.
    My biggest concern is the babies at only 7 weeks old getting too much calcium from the adults food. What can I do?
     
  2. can you hear me now?

    can you hear me now? Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 18, 2008
    Southwest Missouri
    Other than limiting them to their brooder I don't see that.there is much that can be done.
     
  3. chillmiller

    chillmiller Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 7, 2010
    Tonopah/AZ
    i dont see it as to big of a deal if ya have oyster shell in there free choice

    but... if your adult flock free range all day lift there food out of the little ones reach while there out of the run
     
  4. savingdogs

    savingdogs Chillin' With My Peeps

    I just fed everyone Flock Raiser and put out oyster shell for those that needed calcium. This is my first time raising chicks but it seemed to work fine. Maybe someone else has more experience with this and will chime in.
     
  5. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    I think Flock Raiser w/oyster shell in a separate dish is probably your best bet. The only other idea that popped into my head was to make sure the "adult" food is raised up a good 8 inches or so that the chicks couldn't reach it. Barrier off the chick feed and cut openings only large enough for the chicks to get in and out to access it.
     
  6. Loving My Peeps

    Loving My Peeps Chicken Whisperer

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    Aug 19, 2010
    Central, Maine
    I have built in PVC pipe feeders, raised high enough that the babies don't reach the actual feeders. They get what crumbles have fallen onto the floor. The majority of their feed is from the start and grow. I just don't know exactly how much is too much. Another 2 weeks and the babies will be big enough to reach the pvc feeders.
     

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