Switch Feed if Chickens are not Laying?


In the Brooder
Sep 1, 2020
Thanks to everyone who shared their wisdom and experience.

Look what I found this morning...



Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
For the typical backyard owner, of the typical backyard flock, with typical backyard management practices, I'm in the camp of All Flock/Flock Raiser type feeds (loosely, 18-20% protein, 1% +/- calcium) with free choice oyster shell all their lives. Its easy, no matter your flock composition, no muss, no fuss, its (marginally) better for their health, offers measurable (but not visible) benefits in frequency of lay, size of avg egg, speed of molt, and costs very little more (again, for the typical...) per year than offering layer. Based on the research.

Glad to see your ladies have surprised you.

That said, unless you have roosters, immature pullets, or breeds that only rarely lay eggs tending towards smallish size, offering layer isn't necessarily bad, just not as good. Whether or no better is worth it to you is specific to your circumstances. I don't feed the way I recommend above myself - but I don't have a typical flock, or typical backyard management practices, and am engaged in educated risk taking with some cost consciousness. [discussion can follow, if interested]

More, I'm curious as to your choice to use a no soy feed. Its very difficult to get a good amino acid profile, even if you hit protein targets, without soy unless your feed contains significant animal/fish/insect proteins, and few non-soy feeds do. Again, this isn't something that necesarily "bad", its simply associated with birds that never become as large, as hearty, as they could have with a better diet during their adolescence. As they approach maturity, their needs for some of the aminons non-soy feeds are often deficient in diminish, and it becomes a non-issue (in my view), the differences so small as to be negligible even in the larger studies.

I mention solely so you are aware of the issue in the future, and can make an educated choice for yourself if you should add new chicks to the flock at some point, should you wish to do the research.

/edit and I was unable to find copy of one of their feed labels online, but I did find this mention on what appears to be their facebook page. Looks like they are using fishmeal to fix, in part, the amino acid profile. That's a good thing. Some claim high fishmeal diets can be detected in the flavor of eggs. I've not noticed, but for reasons unimportant, I have essentially no sense of taste - so my experience should be completely discounted.
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