Please help me with some confusion...

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by kiaya611, Mar 28, 2007.

  1. kiaya611

    kiaya611 Songster

    Mar 5, 2007
    Lebanon, OR
    I am not really clear on a section of the "Storey's Raising Chickens" book and was hoping someone here could help me out...

    I posted in the "Feeding Time" section of this forum at the following link ( questions about when to change from Chick Starter/Grower to Pullet Grower/Developer.

    It seems that the General Discussion section of this forum gets much more of an audience, so I wanted to make sure that this was seen by as many members as possible since my birds are at the age first mentioned in the section of the book I am quoting.

    As always, I appreciate any help you can provide.

    Best wishes,
  2. jmofaustin

    jmofaustin Songster

    Mar 11, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Well I feed the starter right up till the first one in the group lays her first egg, then I switch them to layer. I think the grower is for meat birds, but I don't go there, so couldn't tell you.
  3. chickbea

    chickbea Songster

    Jan 18, 2007
    At 8-10 weeks, you can switch from chick starter to a grower formula, but there are two different kinds, one for meat birds and one for layers. Don't feed the meat bird kind, as it is just designed for fattening. At 18 to 20 weeks (depending on the breed), then you can gradually switch over to the layer ration. Some people wait until their pullets actually lay their first egg before they make the switch.
    Another complication, however, is that you can't always find grower formula in all areas of the country, nor during all times of the year. If this is the case, it's fine to feed chick starter up until you switch over to layer ration.
    After the girls lay their first few eggs, I start giving them free choice calcium.
  4. jkm

    jkm Songster

    Mar 28, 2007
    Forest Grove
    thnaks everyone, I only have three and it was starting to sound like a lot of food changes.[​IMG]
    the feed store has starter and layer, my new organic farm in Yamhill Oregon is negoiating a soy free feed from a big mill. I want to put my girls on it, I seem to feel ill, nauseated, after eating eggs where the hens have alot of soy feed.
  5. allen wranch

    allen wranch Crowing

    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    Most feed companies have put a lot of research into what chickens need and formulate their feed accordingly.

    If you are just starting out, stick with the commercial feeds until you see how your birds respond.

    As mentioned earlier, the basics are:
    Hatch to 8-10 weeks: chick starter
    10 weeks to point of lay (about 20 weeks): chick grower. If grower not available, starter is fine for 20 weeks.
    20 weeks or point of lay: layer feed

    You don't need to cut the feed with anything. The commercial feeds are a balanced diet. Scratch is primarliy grains and can be fed as a treat. Too much will dilute the protein value in the regular feed, and can cause weight gain which can lead to egg binding.

    Most birds do fine on just commercial feed. If they don't, then you can supplement to enhance the feed.

    These are the basics for layers. Meat birds have different requirements.
  6. kiaya611

    kiaya611 Songster

    Mar 5, 2007
    Lebanon, OR
    Thank you very much for the information. My chicks and I appreciate it [​IMG]

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