Is there a difference between "crumbles" and "chick starter"?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ktgouge, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. ktgouge

    ktgouge Out Of The Brooder

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    I am curious to know if there is a difference between "crumbles" and "chick starter"... I bought DuMOR Chick Starter 20% and according to the package I can start feeding this as soon as I receive my day old pullets; however, I've heard that you should feed the chicks "crumbles" and now I'm wondering if these are the same or not.
     
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Crumbles is the size/shape of the food, they're, well, crumbles. There is also mash or what are basically crumbles that have been smashed, and pellets which is what they break up to get crumbles. So size wise it goes mash, crumbles, pellets. Chick Starter is a food that is nutritionally suitable to feed chicks. The exact formulas depend on the manufacturers. Dumor chick starter is in crumble form and is fine to feed chicks.
     
  3. ktgouge

    ktgouge Out Of The Brooder

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    Excellent! Thanks so much for the clarification. [​IMG]
     
  4. ChickenLegs13

    ChickenLegs13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not as astute as Kelsie and never realized any difference between crumble & mash. Most of my DuMore looks like dust. As long as you're using 20% starter you good to go, regardless.
    FWIW, DuMore feed labled "chick starter" is 24% for gamebird chicks, and the 20% is labled "starter/grower" for chickens. ducks & geese.
     
  5. ktgouge

    ktgouge Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks, ChickenLegs13! That is some good information to know! [​IMG]
     
  6. RonC

    RonC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think all chick starter is crumbles and adult food is avaiable as pellets or crumbles. Some keep egg producing chickens on starter till they start laying. That is what I did. Some switch to a grower between starter and layer food or even feed them the grower and offer oyster shell for calcium instead of layer feed.The feed store gave me pellet feed one time by accident after they started laying and I never went back to crumbles. They waste so much of their feed when using crumbles. If it hits the ground it's history, The pellets they can see on the ground and will pick them up, not so with the crumbles. It really made a noticable difference in the amount I was buying. It's your decision but worth thinking about.
     
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  7. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    A lot depends on the manufacturer and what they call it so far as Starter/Grower/Layer/All-Ages/Flock Raiser/Game Bird etc goes, even feed called the same thing will vary to some extent.
    What they call the sizes Mash/Crumbles/Pellet seems to be pretty standard, even if the size of the pellet or crumble will vary a little.
    Except for Layer with the extra calcium most chicken foods are actually pretty darn similar and the biggest difference is the protein level.
    Protein is money, so most more specialized feeds are made to have the lowest protein percentage possible and still have the chickens do well.
    The 16% for your usual Layer seems to be where the cost of the feed is balanced out by the egg production in commercial operations.
    Extra protein doesn't hurt most birds, and may actually help increase egg production and size, and it is good if they are molting or under stress etc. You do have to watch some big breeds and birds like Cornish X especially which can grow too fast, or layers, some of the commercial layers especially since they can have problems if pushed to mature too early.
    Chick Starter is usually around 18-20% up to 24% protein and is usually formulated for growing chicks to about 8 weeks, but it can be fed to older birds. The 24% is usually used for turkeys and other game birds, though most people seem to like to feed them an even higher protein% with feeds made especially for them.
    I actually feed a 20% chick starter that is made in pellet form by a local mill to all my birds, except young chicks which get chick starter in crumble form. I do cut the protein level down using grain to adolescent birds and some layers.
    Grower/Finisher specifically is usually around 15%-16% protein and is for birds 8-18 weeks or so.
    Layer is usually 15-17% but you can get higher, most commercial brands say for birds over 18 weeks. A lot of people do start to feed it until they chickens actually start to lay, especially breeds that are late starters. Other people never feed Layer, just feed one of the others and offer oyster shell on the side for the Layers.
    All-Ages or Flock Raiser type foods are usually around 18% protein and can be fed to pretty much everything, just have oyster shell on the side for laying hens.
    There are various Turkey feeds, Game Bird feeds, Conditioner Feeds etc, and those can have a lot higher protein% like 28-32%, if you want to up the protein% for your chickens because they are molting or something, these can be a good way to go.
     
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  8. ktgouge

    ktgouge Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you for the information!!!! I purchased the DuMor grower/starter crumbles and just got my chicks yesterday; however, I noticed that there were a lot of weevils in the feed, which I didn't see when I filled up the chicks' feeder (and didn't think to look for since I'd bought the bag only a few days ago. Something interesting occurred though, the chicks pounced on the feed and have been eating the weevils and appear to be really enjoying both the feed and the weevils...lol. Here's a pick of the new chicks too!
     
  9. ktgouge

    ktgouge Out Of The Brooder

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    [​IMG]
     
  10. ktgouge

    ktgouge Out Of The Brooder

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    Oh, I almost forgot, the grower/starter crumble that I bought is 20% protein!
     

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