Senior Hen Feed?

chickensforever

In the Brooder
13 Years
Jan 16, 2007
58
2
31
Bellevue, WA
My three hens are almost five years old now and are laying only a few eggs a week combined, and that's dropping even more (to maybe 2 a week combined) now that it's getting colder. I'm really into nutrition and I'm wondering if anybody knows of any special nutrient requirements for older hens. I doubt there's any "senior" feed like for other livestock, but has anybody tried anything for holder hens? One thing I worry about is whether too much calcium could start causing problems, since they aren't using it to make egg shells like they used to. Right now I feed them a complete layer feed and supplement it with oyster shells and treats. Thanks!
 

Akane

Crowing
11 Years
Jun 15, 2008
4,654
53
251
I have taken nutrition classes but not on poultry so this is only my guess. Usually as animals get older they don't use nutrients as well and they start to need a more similar diet to when they were growing and using more nutrients. Alot of people will go back to kitten feed for senior cats or the higher protein, higher calorie feeds that they used when the livestock were growing. I'd consider mixing in some all purpose/flock raiser and/or nonmedicated chick starter or grower depending exactly what is in your area and what the numbers are on the bags to give them a boost and make sure to keep some oyster shell or other calcium out seperate if they need more than what's in their mix of feed.
 

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