Mixed ages....feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by kuntrychick, Oct 28, 2011.

  1. kuntrychick

    kuntrychick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have all different age chickens....6 laying hens, 2 grown roos, 4 almost 19-week olds (3 pullets I'm expecting to lay any day now & 1 roo), and 10 almost 9-week olds.

    I've seen ALL of them eating the Starter/Grower that I keep out for the younger ones, but I still keep out 22% Layer for the big girls + oyster shell free choice (which they never touch).

    Should I remove the layer feed to make sure the younger ones don't eat it? Should I go buy some Flock Raiser or something they all can eat to make sure the young ones aren't getting into the calcium stuff?

    If I do switch over to Flock Raiser or something, I'm concerned the grown ones might have trouble with the food change. Any suggestions on that or do they switch to a different food pretty easy?

    Also, I'm not sure what to do with all my layer feed in the meantime while they're eating something else. I have about 1/2 50# bag of 16% layer that's already "on hold" for awhile because they are currently eating 22% layer to up their protein. I just bought the bag of 22% maybe 2 weeks or so ago. Also, earlier today I bought some of the new Purina Omega-3 Layena & have already opened it & mixed a little in with the 22% layer. So, I have 3 open bags of feed I don't wanna waste. If they are kept in an airtight, rodent-proof container, will they be ok over the next few months until they are all laying age?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Quote:If all of them are sneaking bites at the starter/grower, they'll eat starter/grower. My guess is they'd eat Raiser too. Yes, just put away the layer until everyone is laying.
     
  3. kuntrychick

    kuntrychick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    But will The layer be ok? Like will it mold or anything or go bad/stale?
     
  4. Whittni

    Whittni Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote:it won't go stale for 90days, I think you are okay [​IMG]
     
  5. kuntrychick

    kuntrychick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What other feeds out there for a mixed flock besides the Purina Flock Raiser?

    I would really like some feed with animal proteins. I called the local place I get the Tucker Milling layer pellets to see if they have anything for a mixed flock. All they have is various kinds of scratch, Tucker Milling Starter/Grower, & the layer pellets (16% & 22%).

    So, is the Purina Flock Raiser my only option? I'm not knocking it by no means. I would just prefer animal proteins if there's something available.
     
  6. kuntrychick

    kuntrychick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I went & got some Purina Flock Raiser today. My local TSC only has Flock Raiser in Crumbles...no pellets. I hope they don't waste it too bad, especially since the grown ones are used to laying pellets.
     
  7. twentynine

    twentynine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would mix it all together and feed it to all the chickens.

    Nearest I can figure you have between 20 and 25 chickens. They will eat about 100# feed or more per month. The feed you have, plus the flock raiser you just bought, is good feed and will not hurt any of your chickens.

    For future feed requirements you can use flock raiser, feed it to all the chickens, supplement with free choice oyster shell, simple as that you're done.

    I have tried all manner of feeds, 20%, 22%, 16% layer, Dumor, Purina, pellet, crumble, it all goes down a hungry chickens throat. But mainly I feed Purina flock raiser crumble from TSC. I (me not the chickens) would prefer pellets, but the only place I can get flock raiser pellets is a local Mom and Pop feed store and they want $18+ for a 50# bag. I am not against Mom and Pops making a living, but when a bag of feed is $4 more expensive at one place than another, no way can I make sense out of it.

    The other thing you mentioned in your last post was waste. I have not noticed any increase in feed consumption comparing crumbles to pellets. And for what its worth, nor have I noticed the chickens prefering one brand or type or pellet over crumble. I put it in the feeder they eat it.

    The only time I feed a "specialized" feed is Purina starter/grower (18% protien I think) for biddies. The next time I have biddies I will try the Dumor 20% starter, but in truth I do not expect any noticeable difference.

    I also supplement my chickens with anything I have on hand. Fresh fish rib cuts from fish filets, when I am cleaning fish. Left over fish bait, worms, shinners, crickets, live shrimp. Fresh greens- rape, mustard greens, turnips, rye grass all planted specially for the chickens. Table scraps- all table scraps. Cracked corn at maybe 1/2 cup per day to 10 full grown, with a small hand full chunked to the 10 week pullets. Whole kernal corn every once in a while (surplus deer corn), small hand full at a time. 12% Horse and mule sweet feed. Basicly whatever I have at the moment, just chunk it over the fence, just to get'em excited and make their life interesting.

    Strangely enough I have found somethings they don't like, bananas, Purina Strategy horse feed, satsuma oranges and believe it or not carrots.
     
  8. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    Maybe I'm dumb but I just give them all starter/grower till everyone's old enough to lay. I tend to have a mixed age flock always and I don't want to keep more than one kind of food around at a time. It's all getting hella expensive anyway, with the starter, grower, and layer all being about the same price. More protien might mean more growth or more eggs, or it might just be going to waste, I don't really know. But I do know I've got some nice eggs and some big orps growing up.
     

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