What can I feed my chicks???

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by 1chickens1, Aug 29, 2016.

  1. 1chickens1

    1chickens1 Out Of The Brooder

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    3 days ago our broody hen hatched 5 chicks. They are in the run with our other chickens but in a sort of crate so our chickens can't get to the chicks.
    We feed our chickens our leftover scraps and stuff like chicken scratch.
    Is it ok to give chicks that type of stuff???
     
  2. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    I would strongly advise against it. Unless you can guarantee that you are providing the correct balance of vitamins / nutrients for health and growth (which I would doubt) then buying proprietary chick starter feed is the best thing to give them (and momma will benefit from this too, as she has eaten very little in the past 3 weeks and needs to a good diet)

    CT
     
  3. 1chickens1

    1chickens1 Out Of The Brooder

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    ok thank you.
    do u know when I can start feeding them that tyoe of food tho?
     
  4. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Chick starter should be given immediately
     
  5. 1chickens1

    1chickens1 Out Of The Brooder

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    yes. we are currently feeding them chick starter. I am just wondering when I can start feeding the chicks our food straps/chicken scratch as well.....like can we feed them it as well after our brooder hen abandons the chicks or can we feed them it sooner than that?
     
  6. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Seems i misunderstood, sorry. As long as your chicks are scratching around in the soil in your run (they should have grit in their crops, by doing so), then giving allowing them access to additional food should be fine from 4 weeks old. The more starter feed they eat, in preference to anything else at a young age, the better. Personally, i would leave additional foods until they are part of the main flock, i.e. once momma decides that her duties are over. Any additional foods should ideally constitute no more than 10% of a bird's daily food intake.

    Just an observation, but providing that your run is sufficiently large there may be limited benefit to keeping your chicks and mom segregated. I have found that adult chickens rarely bother with chicks, and momma keeps any overly interested adults at arms length. I let my momma hen and her chicks mingle with the main flock from the day they are hatched and I have never had an issue with adults picking on chicks (I do free range however, and this may make a difference). I'm not suggesting that it always works, but thats been my experience.
     
  7. 1chickens1

    1chickens1 Out Of The Brooder

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    Ok. Thank you so much for all the help.
    I think im going to keep them seperated becuase our broody hen is not our most dominate. In fact all of our other chickens peck at and bully our broody hen so we have decided it is best to keep them seperate instead of taking the chance of getting a chick hurt/killed.
    Thank you so much again!
     
  8. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    You are most welcome. I believe that you have made a wise decision to keep momma and chicks separated, considering your circumstances. Very little about keeping chickens is caste in stone - we should all do what we feel is best, in our own circumstances.
     
  9. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    My broody-raised chicks get scraps, etc from the start. They're in with the flock, I have no way to keep them from getting to the scraps, and momma delights in finding those treats for them. Grit is good, or having them on sandy soil or decomposed granite, something like that for digestion.
     

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