When can I take my chickens off starter?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by jimz1, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. jimz1

    jimz1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 6, 2010
    Coleman, Wi
    When can I take my chickens off starter? They are about 9 weeks old and are outside in their run all day.
    What do I feed them until I start with egg mash/layer feed oyster shells ect? What do I feed the Roos when I switch?
     
  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Unless you have access to plain grower feed, you keep them on starter or starter/grower combo till they lay the first egg. I cannot get plain grower here in my area so they stay on starter/grower till they are laying or about 18 weeks old. If the roosters are with the hens, they eat what the hens eat.
     
  3. rmonge00

    rmonge00 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I would ask the feed store. I switched mine over to all-purpose at about 10 - 12 weeks. I don' t think you give the layer mash until they start laying eggs....

    Ryan
     
  4. colebarnhart

    colebarnhart Chillin' With My Peeps

    If you want to give your roo special feed there is/ are products for that, but not sure what type of roo you have and you probably don't want to risk your hens eating "his" feed and/or keeping him seperate (just guessing). I think they're mostly for raising game cocks.

    http://www.tractorsupply.com/livest...reg-game-cock-maintenance-feed-50-lb--5016006

    http://www.tractorsupply.com/livest...reg-game-cock-conditioner-feed-50-lb--5016014

    They need some grit early in life and often, but you won't need oyster shell until they start laying. You can start to give them a little scratch grain when they're around 4+ months old (adult birds).

    Not sure what brand your feeding currently, but usually they all have a "starter/grower", then a "raiser", and then a "layer", but you don't have to use the "raiser" and you can keep them on "starter" until they start laying eggs then switch to "layer".

    Here is purina's product listing and each one gives a timeline and guideline, on when to give what.

    http://poultry.purinamills.com/OURPRODUCTS/Products/CompleteProductList/default.aspx
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2011
  5. triplepurpose

    triplepurpose Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 13, 2008
    That said though, I have fed growing birds layer feed or all-purpose before when it was all I could get and they turned out just great. the nutritional info on all of those bags are actually pretty similar. If you're feeding them scraps and other things too and they have access to pasture I feel that helps to make up any small discrepancies as well, in a way... I wouldn't worry about it too much, personally... the way I see it those feeds are intended to sustain caged/confined birds in a commercial factory-farm that are fed nothing else but the ration, and I don't think that's the actual situation in many people's backyard coops... At least, I kinda HOPE not...
    That's my two cents, for what it's worth...
    Good luck!
     

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