When can I switch from crumbles to pellets

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by finnleyjo, Jun 5, 2009.

  1. finnleyjo

    finnleyjo In the Brooder

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    I'm sure this has been covered numerous times here, but I don't have the time at the moment to go searching for it.

    My girls are 9 weeks old (I think). Is it okay to switch them to pelleted food? I need to buy a new bag of feed soon, so I figured I would check.

    When I do switch them over to pellets, is there a special way to do it? Do I need to give them both the crumbles and pellets for a while, or can I just switch them to the new feed and they will figure it out?
     
  2. chickie momma di

    chickie momma di Songster

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    you can feed layer pellets at 20 weeks of age from what i understand. that is because their bodies cant process the calcium from the pellets until that age.

    i'm sure someone will answer soon in more detail
     
  3. guesswhatchickenbutt

    guesswhatchickenbutt Songster

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    My chickens are about 10 weeks old and I'm trying to figure out what to feed them too!

    I keep reading threads that say to read the back of the bag, but I buy in bulk in these brown sacks without much writing on them (it's just the way our little feed store works). I know I can ask the feed store guy, but I'd hate to take his word as the only word.

    Right now they're on the same food they've had since I got them as hatchlings... they ran out of food last night so I'm off to the feed store this morning.

    What do I get?

    I have no earthly idea.
     
  4. cjexotic

    cjexotic Cj's Mandarin Ducks

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    Hi,

    Saw your post with no response. I have babies ranging from a few days old to 16 weeks old. I feed a chick/gamebird crumbles (also comes in pellets).. it is 22% protein. I feed crumbles as I have silkies.
    I learned from this list about this and changed from my 20% chick starter/grower to this. I have had no fatalities with chicks so far which is great. So in my opinion you can continue to feed your starter/grower until 20 weeks or go to a gamebird finisher. My feed mill does not have it and I started with the chick/gamebird until they are ready to lay. That is what I do. My birds like the pellets but its too big for some of them and I want to make sure all can eat it so just stayed with crumbles. a bit more waste but I know they are all eating.

    Hope that helps.
     
  5. meags163

    meags163 In the Brooder

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    Jun 9, 2009
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    Uh oh! My chicks are only 9 weeks old and I've been feeding them layer pellets for a few days! The guy at the farm store told me it was ok to switch them, but I was suspicious that he didn't really know much about chickens. There is only 1 person in the whole store who knows anything and she wasn't there. Should I switch them back or will they be ok?
     
  6. guesswhatchickenbutt

    guesswhatchickenbutt Songster

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    Thanks SO much cjexotic!!! I appreciate the advice. I really do appreciate it.

    meags163 - I am 100% positive that you need to STOP the layer food for 9 day old chicks and switch to chick food ASAP. It'll say chick food on it and it'll usually say "chick starter/grower" on it. It is very unhealthy to give little bitty chicks layer food.
     
  7. cjexotic

    cjexotic Cj's Mandarin Ducks

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    meags163 its too early for layer.. at 9 weeks you need to be still feeding chick feed. Go to the chick/gamebird starter/grower.. its is higher in protein and is much better for chicks especially silkies. Now you can got to a finisher gamebird if you want but no layer. Too high in calcium for a non egglayer.
    It can do something to the liver or kidneys.. forgot which.. just know it bad for them. They need protein for growth and calcium later for the egglaying.
    what little you have fed is ok no major harm done. But get them off that asap.
     
  8. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

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    Quote:[​IMG]
     
  9. guesswhatchickenbutt

    guesswhatchickenbutt Songster

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    I went to our feed store to buy more feed and the guy said I needed to keep on the chick starter/grower until they get to laying age. This is a very small country feed store and he has pet chickens... So I bought a bag and when I get home I read the little tag and it says for feeding from 0 to 8 weeks. Well my chickens are about 12 weeks old.

    Should I keep this bag?
     
  10. cjexotic

    cjexotic Cj's Mandarin Ducks

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    yes.. you want to stay with that or go to a gamebird finisher. I too have a small town feedmill and I just stay with the chick starter until they lay their first egg then I switch over. I also feed a layer if looking a bit down or a hen sitting I feed chick starter for two reasons. One don't have to worry when chicks hatch them getting layer and it gives a boost to the hen sitting..

    Keep you bag its fine.
     

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