pros and cons of medicated chick food.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by outedgekim, May 19, 2016.

  1. outedgekim

    outedgekim Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 27, 2015
    opinions please, fyi. i try to garden as organic as possible.
  2. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 21, 2015
    No where Nebraska
    Medicated chick food is used to prevent coccidiosis. It does not stay within the chickens body and can be used safely. Until the chicks immune system is string enough to fight off the bacteria. However if you do not have a coccidiosis problem you do not need to treat it. Go ahead and feed the non medicated feed, if you ever see a problem, have unexplained losses, switch to the medicated feed worry free.
  3. Jensownzoo

    Jensownzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2016
    Saint Louis, MO
    Not exactly right. There is a low level of amprolium in medicated chick feed. Amprolium is a coccidiostat, which means it will prevent the protozoal organism, coccidia, from being able to reproduce. The body's own immune system in the gut must then attack the organisms themselves, which results in an increased amount of antibodies circulating in the chicks and thus better protection against coccidia once the medication is stopped. And coccidial organisms are commonly found in the dirt, healthy flocks, etc.

    The level of amprolium in feed is not high enough to treat an outbreak of coccidiosis. If there are enough organisms present, it will not able to prevent all of them from reproducing. In this way, it is a preventive measure only. If you have an outbreak, you will have to switch to something like Corid to treat properly.

    Using a medicated chick feed is largely an individual preference. Some people want only the chicks with strong immune systems to survive so do not use it, some might have a low environmental load of the parasite so don't need it as much, some keep the chicks in a disinfected indoor brooder until they're 6 weeks old so they wouldn't be as susceptible to an overwhelming infection, some use different immune-boosting methods instead...etc.. Some feel that it gives the chicks support through their most vulnerable time of life, some have high loads of coccidia in their flock, some brood outdoors, etc. and choose to use it.
  4. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 30, 2008
    Thanks Jensownzoo. That was explained very well.

    I see you are in St Louis do you work for Purina? Your answer may suggest that.
  5. Jensownzoo

    Jensownzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2016
    Saint Louis, MO
    Nope. I think my goats are currently eating a Purina pellet as a treat, but that's it. I've got a degree in Zoology and an insatiable hunger to find out the "whys" though. Since I've gotten my chickens, I think I spend on average 1-2 hours nightly researching various topics regarding them. And now I'm moving on to geese and ducks... :D

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