Lets talk about layer feed...

shelbylewis

Songster
Jun 3, 2018
180
367
136
SJ New Jersey
Okay so I want to start by saying that my chickens are my pets and the eggs are just a nice bonus :) I did a lot of research in the few months that I have had them, but I learn something new everyday. I currently have 3 hens and 1 roo, I did some research on feeding roosters layer feed and I didn't come across anything that said it would be harmful for him. Well now the other day someone posted that her rooster died from gout from the excess calcium in the layer feed that her rooster was eating. What is everyone thoughts on this? I absolutely do not want to hurt my rooster by feeding him layer feed so I am going to switch to an All Flock feed and supply oyster shells for calcium for my girls. What is everyones favorite all flock feeds/oyster shell brands? I want the best!
 

rebrascora

Free Ranging
5 Years
Feb 14, 2014
7,127
8,645
556
Consett Co.Durham. UK
Scratch and Peck Layer Feed can be fed to laying hens and roosters. The company says that you can also feed their Grower Feed to roosters, then supplement oyster shell free choice for the hens. I like this feed because it is minimally processed, certified organic and non-gmo. I don't have a rooster, but my girls love it!
There are several threads where people who used minimally processed grain mix feeds like Scratch and Peck actually lost birds to Fatty Liver Haemorrhagic Syndrome. They literally dropped dead without warning. It can also lead to reproductive disorders like egg binding and prolapse and salpingitis or internal laying, due to birds becoming obese. The manner in which you feed Scratch and Peck is very important to prevent these problems and I'm not sure that it is made clear on the product. If the birds have access to such feeds 24/7 from a feeder where they can see the feed and bill the feed out, they will often selectively eat the higher carbohydrate components of the feed and leave the pulses which contain more protein. This can lead to a dietary imbalance with the birds converting the surplus carbohydrates to fat which deposits around the vent and narrows the opening leading to laying issues. The fat also starts to build up in and around other organs and the liver is particularly vulnerable. Larger birds like Orpingtons and Sussex are more at risk because they are less active than lighter breeds like Leghorns and therefore burn less of the surplus carbs. The best way to feed the likes of scratch and Peck is to make a wet mash or ferment it and ration it, so that they clean up their daily allowance or go hungry or scatter it on the ground for them to forage for so that they burn off the extra calories, rather than standing at the feeder filling themselves up.
The issues I mentioned above may only affect one or two birds in a flock and will take months to become a problem but it is worth knowing the risk and changing your feeding regime to negate it.
 

Shadrach

Roosterist
Jul 31, 2018
10,138
65,807
1,302
Catalonia, Spain
My Coop
My Coop
Okay so I want to start by saying that my chickens are my pets and the eggs are just a nice bonus :) I did a lot of research in the few months that I have had them, but I learn something new everyday. I currently have 3 hens and 1 roo, I did some research on feeding roosters layer feed and I didn't come across anything that said it would be harmful for him. Well now the other day someone posted that her rooster died from gout from the excess calcium in the layer feed that her rooster was eating. What is everyone thoughts on this? I absolutely do not want to hurt my rooster by feeding him layer feed so I am going to switch to an All Flock feed and supply oyster shells for calcium for my girls. What is everyones favorite all flock feeds/oyster shell brands? I want the best!
Don't feed roosters layer feed. There is far too much Calcium in it. It can cause liver and kidney damage and hypercalcemia in some cases.
Here's a recent informative thread about it.
I suggest you read the posts from ChickenCanoe and the links he's provided.
I've taken the liberty of providing a link to your post Kris5902.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/layer-feed-and-breeding-roosters.1282637/page-5#post-20708730

https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/layer-feed-and-breeding-roosters.1282637/
 
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