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question on feeding and when

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by mary24, May 17, 2011.

  1. mary24

    mary24 Hatching

    Apr 18, 2011
    we are new to chickens. we have 7 (6 rhode island and 1 golden comet) that we got on April 16th. I have been reading alot in this forum and there is alot of talk about food. But I don't know when to start what food. We are still feeding our 1 month old chickens the starter food (medicated) how long should they get this food? I have been hearing alot about oyster shells, grit, cracked corn and layer feed. When do the chickens get these types of food. And am I missing anything to give them. They will be free ranged and we just finished up fixing 1/2 of the bottom part of the barn. We are planning on putting down wood chips and hanging feeders and a water. We have just finished up the nest boxes and we are trying to figure what to do about perching. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Starter/grower in one bag, and starter feeds- grower feeds in separate bags are sold depending on the brand.

    You can get by with starter the whole time though up until the point of lay- or if nonmedicated forever if you offer oyster shell on the side for layers.

    Medicated feed is personal choice- some like it and some don't.

    Oyster shell isn't given until the point of lay
    Grit should be offered if giving treats, if eating grass, whole grains, etc. (or not free ranging)
    Here's a thread where I gave some links:

    Scratch is a treat. Don't give too much or you decrease the total protein content of their feed. I'd throw out a handful per day for your # of chickens.

    Layer feed is started when they start laying. Too much calcium for nonlayers.

    Starter is usually 20% protein, grower 17%, and layer 16%. Some like to keep their layers at 20% or thereabouts. You can also feed flockraiser but I don't know the protein if you have differing ages or ducks.
    Last edited: May 18, 2011
  3. emvickrey

    emvickrey ChowDown Silkie Farm

    Mar 5, 2009
    Hornbeak, Tennessee
    I give starter to chicks till they feather out then switch to a mix of scratch grains and starter.
    For adults I mix scratch grains and layer crumbles. I keep oyster shell available to the layers

    I understood that if they free range they will pick up little stones and grit isn't necessary. But, I do toss in a handful in their feeders. Those that don't have access to the ground get grit available to them when they want it. I don't give chicks grit because I feed them only chick starter.
  4. Country Girl Wannabe

    Country Girl Wannabe Chirping

    Apr 27, 2011
    West Virginia
    I to am new to chickens and wondering about how much to feed them. I have 6 RIR pullets/cockerall, 2 Copper Maran pullet/cockerall, 2 Silkie pullets, 2 buf orfington laying hens (1yr). They are 1/2 free range/1/2 time coop and pen, this is just until I know they will come back to the coop. What is the rule of thumb for feeding them? So far I have been feeding morning and evening just throwing it on the ground, should I get a feeder?
  5. flowergirl60

    flowergirl60 Songster

    Feb 13, 2011
    Austin Tx
    Quote:I keep food and water in the coop 24/7 so they have it when they want it. Mine free-range all day tho. I keep water in the run and water in plant saucers around the yard so they are never w/o water. I replace water with fresh everyday. I would get a feeder b/c throwing it on the ground is a waste. Plus it can lay there and get moldy if not eaten and that is not good for them.
    Last edited: May 18, 2011

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