Uh Ohhh!!!!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Dan11934, Jul 8, 2010.

  1. Dan11934

    Dan11934 New Egg

    Jul 8, 2010
    Long Isaland
    After reading a few posts I learned that giving your flock layer feed prematurly can be detrimental to their health,and I have been suplementing their chick feed with layer feed since the were 8 weeks old!! so far they are not showing any signs of being unhealthy but I just want to know some symtoms to look out for. Thanks, Dan
  2. rcentner

    rcentner Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 6, 2009
    Le Roy, NY
    It's a long term effect on kidney function due to high calcium, I am afraid you and I both will see what happens down the road. I too fed my young ones layer feed cause I didn't know. Hopefully we don't end up with bad kidneys in those chickens as I plan to have mine until they are old.
  3. JohnL11935

    JohnL11935 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I heard this as well when I was starting out.

    The old timer at the feed store asked me a simple question: "Do you set out separate food for your flock rooster or does he eat the layer feed right alongside the hens?"

    He was setting me straight that the little calcium bump in layer feed was no big deal and once again reinforced the need to not over think managing a few backyard chickens.
  4. Dan11934

    Dan11934 New Egg

    Jul 8, 2010
    Long Isaland
    Thank you, all I needed was some peace of mind.
  5. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2009
    Quote:Adult roosters eating layer feed is one thing (lots of people do that...I did, too), but chicks eating layer feed is quite a different matter. Chicks consume so much more food in comparison to their size, they're just little gobble machines. I'd never chance their bodies being able to process the extra calcium out of layer feed, plus the protein percentage in layer is too low for chicks that need to grow rapidly and feather out.

    I'm feeding my whole flock chick starter, plus offering oyster shell on the side for the laying hens.

    If you plan to cull your birds after a year or two when their laying slows down, certainly it doesn't matter. Maybe that's what the old timer at the feed store was thinking of. We keep our chickens as pets, though, and we want them to have a long and healthy life with us even after they stop laying.
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2010

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