to feed "all flock" or chicken started

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by kim10261, Oct 4, 2014.

  1. kim10261

    kim10261 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I will be getting baby chicks at the end of this month and they will be introduced to the flock after they are fully feathered,I will have them in the same pen with a wire fence separating chicks from existing older flock(they are 6 months old), that will only be temporary,so what I have read is I can either feed my whole flock the starter feed that the babies will be eating or the all flock with a side of oyster shells...?...is that correct? will the babies still get all the nutrition from the all flock as they would the starter and then the grower? also I never thought about my roos eating the layer feed both the hens and roos have eaten the same thing from day one and everyone seems healthy and happy,my flock I have now are only 6 months old.and that is how long I have been raising chickens,really nervous about this winter will they be cold we mainly just have cold air not so much snow, ice sometimes,i am in hot springs Arkansas,also my hens have been laying since they were 4 months old and I have 1 that lays a double yolker almost every week..is that a good thing?
     
  2. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member Project Manager

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    The main difference in the feeds is the amount of calcium. Too much calcium harms chicks and younger pullets. Calcium is added to layer feed for eggshell formation. So best to feed all what the youngsters need and supplement calcium to the others. Grow rooster should not be susceptible to calcium overload, but if calcium is offered separately I would think the roo would not eat it?
     
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Hi neighbor. They will be fine with all of them eating either All-Flock or Starter. If you look at the tag you’ll see the list of nutrients is basically the same. I don’t know if you are feeding medicated Starter, I don’t but many people do, but I would be hesitant to feed medicated feed to laying hens. Some people do though. By the time you integrate them they will probably be on Grower anyway.

    There is a difference of opinion on here as to whether feeding a rooster Layer causes problems due to the excess calcium. Some people worry about it, some don’t. The excess calcium thing is not about what is in one bite, it’s about how much in total they eat each day, and that over a time period. A rooster does not eat as much as a hen that is laying an egg and replacing 1% to 2% of her body weight every time she lays an egg. If they forage for part of their food or eat a lot of low-calcium food like many treats they are not going to get as much calcium as a rooster eating nothing but Layer. I never feed Layer, always Grower or Starter with oyster shell on the side but I practically always have younger chicks in my flock.

    Your older chickens will be fine in the weather. I’ve had chicks less than 6 weeks old go through nights where the lows were in the mid-20’s. Once they are feathered out they handle the cold really well. Our heat in the summer is much more of a danger than out cold. The younger chicks need heat until they feather out. The age they feather out depends on a few things. If they eat a higher protein feed, they will feather out a little faster. If they are exposed to the cold, they feather out faster. I don’t raise any exotic chickens, just the standard dual-purpose, so I can’t speak for breed maybe making a difference.

    Personally I don’t like a hen that lays a double yolked egg regularly. That does not suit my goals. The eggs don’t fit in a carton, you can’t hatch them with a realistic chance of success, and they don’t fit in recipes. They do scramble or fry up well. Occasionally is not a big deal, but regular means something is wrong with her internal egg making factory. She is releasing more yolks at a time than she should. Don’t let this freak you out, most hens can handle the double yolked eggs fine, but by laying the larger eggs she has a greater chance of having problems laying, like prolapse or maybe internal laying. Many people would love to have that hen but she just doesn’t fit my personal goals.

    You may have noticed I don’t give a lot of hard and fast rules. A lot of this stuff is personal preference. We’ve all got different goals and situations. Chickens are pretty tough and adaptable. If you can provide the basics, food, water, protection from predators, and some protection from the environment they will do fine.
     
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  4. red ravens

    red ravens New Egg

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    Hi, i let my hens raise the chicks free range, so i feed all flock to everyone with oyster shell on side, all hens need different levels of calcium. i do through a hand full of chick starter twice a day for the chicks, by putting on bare ground the older hens don't seem to eat much, too fine. in Mich. gets pretty cold -20 sometimes, i do not heat, main thing i seen was no drafts and all will be good. good luck.
     
  5. kim10261

    kim10261 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thanks everyone for the replies my chickens I have now the roosters are buff orpingtons and the hens are sex links,the chicks I will be getting at the end of this month will be buff orpingtons .I do let my chickens free range on my off days after they have laid their eggs ,I am currently figuring an add on to their existing pen/coop,the coop is inside their enclosed pen,it will add an additional 25 x 12 feet open concept totally enclosed, i am going to put hardware cloth on the bottom with supports so the grass will continue to grow and they will have access to plenty of sunshine and fresh grass, I have spoiled my chickens in addition to the layer food they have I also have a flock block in the pen and every morning they get cooked oatmeal fresh baby spinach and some fruit or meal worms sprinkled on top, what do you all do in the winter to keep the water from freezing and I also have read to put Vaseline on the combs to help prevent frost bite.
     
  6. kim10261

    kim10261 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    also I have another question about my coop it has 1 wall that is 3/4 open,they are free to come and go as they please and I have a small window on 2 opposite walls,my coop is made of wood and has a shingled roof that sits in my roofed totally enclosed run,my run is made from chain linked dog run panels, which I will be covering in plastic wrap this winter,do you think for ventilation purposes I can leave the 1 wall completely open and close off the 2 windows?
     
  7. MotherOfChkns

    MotherOfChkns Out Of The Brooder

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    Is there any way you can post some pictures of the coop? I'm having trouble visualizing it.
     
  8. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member Project Manager

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    RE: water freezing, guess it depends on your location and winter low temps and whether your water is in run or coop. There's a recent thread discussion on this in areas in northern U.S. I'm in GA and we made one of those lightbulb in cement block warmers…did well for us except for a day with low 5 F - high 11 F..…unusual for my area.

    RE: frostbite, most recommend the vaseline, don't know what temp to start using.
     
  9. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    You will want ventilation from one side to the other up high over the roosts to let out excessive moisture in the coop--that moisture is what causes frostbite. Electric dog water bowls are pretty safe in winter to keep water thawed, but not too warm to drink. From my experience, Flock raiser crumbles are a little larger in size than chick starter, but they are the same in ingredients. Both contain about 1% calcium versus 4% calcium in layer feed.
     
  10. kim10261

    kim10261 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    the windows in the coop are about 12x12 openings that are just below the top roost...where they all want to be...with closing the run in with plastic if I leave the windows open and the front wall off will it be to cold? their coop is in the run which has a roof over it and then with wrapping it in plastic leaving a space of about 6' at the top of the run open for added ventilation will there be to much of a breeze,i was thinking the north and east walls of the run completely covering in plastic
     

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