what amount of protien and why?

Barnmaradotte

Songster
9 Years
Jun 13, 2011
303
79
179
eugene
So right now I give the hens some 16% and was wondering, what's the point of 18-20% layer if 16 is enough? will bumping the protein up help with egg production and size? thanks.
 

Fred's Hens

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Economics come into play, as well. Is the increase in cost justified?

Yes, normally, an 18% protein will provide them with slightly more where-with-all for feather production and egg production. Many folks prefer it. But the law diminishing returns comes into effect. 24% protein isn't going to produce even more and larger eggs, and so on.

A chicken needs a balanced diet for over all health. 16% layer feed provides them adequate, balanced nutrition.
 

A.T. Hagan

Don't Panic
12 Years
Aug 13, 2007
5,379
194
303
North/Central Florida
If you are just wanting a good production of table eggs (as in to be eaten) then a balanced 15-16% layer feed will do that if it is fed as the sole ration. Not a lot of scratch, treats, or anything else other than free range and green feed.

If you want to produce eggs that will give you a good hatch rate of strong, healthy chicks then use a feed that is balanced in the 18-20% range.

More than 20% doesn't really get you anything that would justify the additional expense.

On the small scale in backyard flocks you may not notice much of a difference either way. As the flock size grows you'll begin to notice the difference.
 
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lorain's fids

Songster
8 Years
Jul 9, 2011
659
19
141
New Jersey
Thanks for clarifying this, as I was wondering the same thing about the level of protien. This week I have to purchase my first bag of grower feed, now I will know what to look for in the protien levels in the different bags of feed.
 

mitchell3006

In the Brooder
10 Years
Sep 18, 2009
94
2
31
Mississippi
Bumping the protein up in summer seems to help a little on production. The birds go off their feed some in the extreme heat so the higher protein seems to keep them better. By going to a higher protein they get the same amount of protein while eating less food overall. I have tried it and seem to see a little difference. I can get 22% Layer for $1.00 more than 16%. It seems to go a little farther so the cost works out about the same.
I do seem to have a better hatch rate using the high protein. I think Alan is right about that.

Mark
 

rosegal

Songster
11 Years
Dec 6, 2008
229
3
121
Tustin, CA
I can get 22% Layer for $1.00 more than 16%. It seems to go a little farther so the cost works out about the same.

What brand is the 22% protein?Thanks
 

ailurophile23

Songster
9 Years
Dec 21, 2010
492
56
111
VA
I find my hens more prone to feather eating and picking if I use the 16% protein - when I bump it up to 18-20%, this stops - definitely worth the extra $$ not to have partially naked chickens.
 

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