is chick starter ok for BBB turkey poults?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by patandchickens, May 11, 2009.

  1. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I've got 3 BBB poults, now a bit over 1 wk old. They're in with ten similar-age chicks. I *think* the turkeys have figured out the basics of life (eating, drinking, heat lamp) but it'd be most convenient for me if I can keep them with the chicks for as long as possible, I guess til the size differential gets to be too much.

    The guy I got them from said they'll be fine on regular 21% chick starter. Would you agree, or do I have to suck it up and separate them and give them higher-protein turkey starter? I'm not concerned with pushing maximal growth, I will probably process them at 15-20 lbs live weight I think, I just don't want them developing problems.

    Thanks,

    Pat
     
  2. ohiofarmgirl

    ohiofarmgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 22, 2009
    hi Pat!

    check the posts from a couple days ago for a discussion on this. one of the things you can do is supplement with crumbled up hard boiled eggs. if you have more than a couple birds you should probably suck it up and get the $$ stuff - its worth it.

    we loved our BBB's and they dressed our really nicely. we free ranged them and, even tho they were eating machines, they really took to the free grass, apples, and veggies. saved a bundle by letting them roam about. our theory was to feed them the high protein early then 'save' $$ on the back end by letting them free range.

    good luck!
     
  3. kinnip

    kinnip Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 24, 2008
    Carrollton, GA
    I've been wondering this myself. I have standards, but they still seem to need a little more than the Flock Raiser is giving them. I have few who just aren't thriving. The man of the house went and bought a bag of Startena game bird starter today. We'll see how it goes.
     
  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Thank you ohiofarmgirl, that was a useful thread and I wouldn't have found it otherwise (some things don't 'search' very well [​IMG])

    I am still not sure what I will do, but as some people (esp with smaller turkeys) do seem to do ok on chick feed I think maybe I will *try* to segregate the turkeys for a little while each day and try to feed them crumbled egg yolk, but if it doesn't work I will probably just keep them with the chicks and figure on processing them before they get too unweildy for their legs or c/v systems.

    If we turn out to like having turkeys (and so far, they are extremely cute [​IMG]) and get a Real Breed of them next year, though, I may have to raise them separate from chicks and use actual turkey starter.

    Thanks very much, and if anyone else wants to add their two cents' worth I'm still listening,

    Pat
     
  5. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    They need the high protien feed to support the rapid growth. You can supplement with other feeds though

    Steve in NC
     
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Steve, do you think it'll still be a problem even if I'll not be 'pushing' their growth rate and will be slaughtering them at 15-20 lbs live wt?

    I am just concerned that, esp. since there are only 3 of them, they may be better off in the big pen with the chicken chicks for a few more weeks than in a (smaller) pen by themselves, which is what it'd take to get them eating turkey feed. (If I understand correctly that high protein is not good for chicken chicks, these are red stars and EEs)

    Dunno,

    Pat
     
  7. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:Pat, I don't know the outcome there. We have never fed a lower protien feed. Since they are going to the freezer anyway you aren't really that worried about max growth. If they were heritage birds and you were planning to keep some for breeders you would want to give them the best feeding program you could. Give the regular chick feed a shot and see. Watch for any indications of not enough protien.

    Steve
     
  8. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pennsylvania
    In my experience, you MUST give baby turkeys a high-protein feed. They won't do well otherwise, regardless of how fast you want them to grow. I feed hard-boiled eggs (yolks only) twice a day to supplement my regular feed, instead of buying high-protein feed to begin with and since I have plenty of eggs to use.
     
  9. kinnip

    kinnip Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 24, 2008
    Carrollton, GA
    I'm glad the BF bought the game bird starter. We've hit a rough patch with our poults, lost two, and I think the feed is the culprit. We've observed a LOT of bedding eating. We give poultry vitamins in the water, and I've treated with Sulmet, just in case.
     
  10. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:It's likely the protein issue... describe their age, breed, bedding, feeding regimen, etc., and maybe we can give you some more suggestions.
     

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