Switching from Grower to Layer Feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by capebird, Sep 23, 2011.

  1. capebird

    capebird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2011
    Cape Cod
    My 4 BR hens are 18 weeks old and not laying yet. I've always fed them Nutrena Naturewise Crumble feed
    non-medicated. The instructions on the bag say to switch over to layer feed when the
    hens turn to 16 weeks. Everything I've read on here says not to go to layer feed until
    the hens actually start laying as the lesser protein levels and higher calcium can cause
    issues with the kidneys and liver.......
    so my question is... I am just about out of my current bag of Crumble feed (which is also
    advertised as a "grower" feed). Rather than buy another bag of crumbles (since they are NOT
    laying yet).... would it be safe, would it be okay to now, put them on Layer Feed?
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2011
  2. groundpecker

    groundpecker Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 26, 2011
    Rison, Arkansas
    I continue to feed starter/grower until i see the first egg layed by any hen. Then i switch them to layer feed. you can always mix the grower with the layer feed if they start to lay, to use the rest of the feed.
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2011
  3. JodyJo

    JodyJo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 27, 2010
    I am still feeding grower/starter, I have 3 15 week old pullets not laying yet, so I still feed this to my older girls who are all laying...I offer oyster shell on the side...I will mix the Layer Feed with what grower/starter I have left when the younger ones start laying...my eggs are strong and tasty...so no harm done. I would suggest you continue till you see an egg...should be 2-3 weeks for you depending on breeds...none of mine laid before 20 weeks

    **sorry I did not read you were almost out of starter....go ahead and switch, they will be fine...
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2011
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    You can go either way. I don't agree with the 16 week recommendation (over generalized), as some breeds just won't lay until 22-24 weeks. Your BRs at 18+ weeks are fine either way. I'd not worry about it. Do whatever is convenient for you.

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