switching from starter feed for bantams

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by ChaChaP, Apr 24, 2017.

  1. ChaChaP

    ChaChaP Just Hatched

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    My little flock of bantams are growing fast, what's the criteria for switching from starter to grower to laying feeds? Is it much different than the larger chickies? And if I have a roo in the mix, I'm seeing different information regarding laying feed being a potential issue for him...should he get his own feed or is there a happy medium feed I should consider?
     
  2. Hillaire

    Hillaire Chillin' With My Peeps

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    once they start laying is when I switched them over to layer food I think... I have cochin bantams... the bag should tell you on the back... I keep layer feed in with my rooster he does fine on it
     
  3. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    I feed all my birds a 20% meat bird pellet. Others feed flock raiser / all flock crumbles or pellets. In either case, put down oyster shell on the side once they near laying age.

    My chicks switch from crumble to pellets as soon as they are able to eat them. I have some Marans chicks hatched this weekend and they are with my Japanese hen. I put down chick crumble and also a small handful of pellets for her and the chicks were already eating some of the smaller pieces of pellets.
     
  4. SueT

    SueT Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just feed Flock Raiser to everyone, babies, hens, and if there are roosters, for them too. I've been fermenting it for added benefits. There is always oyster shell available.
    But if you are feeding chick feed, go ahead and use it up before switching. It can get moldy if stored a long time.
     
  5. Kyanite

    Kyanite Loving Life! Premium Member

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    Wow, interesting. I guess the extra protein could be helpful for layers. What differences have you noticed having a whole flock on 20% meat bird rather than an all flock or layer feed? Do your chickens range st all?

    I start my chicks on a starter/grower crumbles, but have all adults in my laying flock on an 18% all flock pellet feed. My meat birds are on 20% mash... can't find it in pellets or I would because they make a huge wasteful mess of it.
     
  6. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I feed my bantam a non medicated starter grower year round. No need to switch if you don't want to. Put out a separate bowl of oyster shells when they start laying. The extra calcium isn't good for roosters or hens not currently laying.
     
  7. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    I was feeding flock raiser but the meat bird is cheaper plus with it being pellets less is wasted. Otherwise they are nearly identical, according to the nutrition label. The closest place I can get All Flock is over an hour away and the meat bird pellets are only $12 a bag and milled locally so I'm happy with it. I have never used layer feed since I've always had roosters and guineas and at some points turkeys and a goose as well so I can't compare with that.

    They stay in the run while I am at work and my husband lets them out when he gets home around 3:30 and they free range until they put themselves to bed. He doesn't work on Friday, Saturday or Sunday normally so they usually free range all day on those days.

    I also feed them fermented feed at my convenience, made from game bird starter (28% protein) and grains (8% protein) and I just adjust the ratio for whatever protein percent I want for the time of year. When its below freezing or I have to go out of town they don't get any but otherwise I usually make it as they do really like it and it makes the feed go further.

    For the mash, try fermenting or at least wetting it and that should cut down on some waste.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2017
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  8. Kyanite

    Kyanite Loving Life! Premium Member

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    Great info SunHwaKwon! Thanks for sharing your experience. I just purchased chicks from a woman who was feeding them game bird feed and she also said the extra protein was better. She gave me a baggy of it to help transition them over to what I feed, but I'm thinking that the higher protein has merit.
     
  9. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    I hope you know that feeding instructions are on the back of almost every bag of feed I've seen in the last 20 years or so.
    Almost every manufacturer has a complete line of feeds for all ages of poultry.
    The place where you buy feed will usually carry at least 2 of those feeds. Just read the back of the feed bag and it will tell you when to switch. Bantams are still chickens so that doesn't matter.
    Each manufacturer knows what the analysis of their feed is, what ages for which it was intended and when to change feeds.
    That is your guide. Asking on a forum for people to speculate what is in a bag of feed and when it is time to change won't get you better advice than the bag of feed.
    Get used to reading the guaranteed analysis and ingredient tag.
    Read the bag.
     
  10. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    That is true; however, the information is going to be biased by that manufacturer. For instance, Dumor is not going to give you a "multistage" feed as an option, because they don't make one. I've only seen a few bags that mention anything about alternative feeds for male chickens.

    Beyond the protein and perhaps calcium numbers, most people don't know what to do with the guaranteed analysis information. That goes for their dog and cat food, as well. Heck, obviously people couldn't even understand human nutrition labels and they had to dumb those down (yet they are still confusing to many). :confused:
     

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