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When did you switch feed?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Sami57, Aug 31, 2013.

  1. Sami57

    Sami57 In the Brooder

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    My girls will be 16weeks next week, one Australorp & two hambergs. When should I start them on laying feed? They are still on chick crumbles, a little off topic but when do I put the nesting box into the coop?thanks!
     
  2. chfite

    chfite Songster

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    The nesting box should be lower than the roosting bars to prevent the chickens from sleeping in the nesting boxes.

    I waited until mine started to lay, then put out oyster shell in a dish until the grower feed was finished. I changed to layer feed to provide the needed calcium, when the layer feed ran out. The only significant difference between grower feed and layer feed is the calcium needed for laying eggs.

    Chris
     
  3. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Crowing 5 Years

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    I switched over to layer feed once mine began to lay, but you can switch them over beginning at 17-18 weeks of age, if you want. If I were you, though, I would just finish up the chick crumbles that you have, and then make the switch.

    As for the nest boxes, I installed mine when my hens were about 18 weeks of age. But it would be better if you put the nest boxes in sooner rather than later, because if they lay for the first time someplace besides the nest (because they don't have a nest box), it may be difficult to teach them to use the nest boxes.
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Crowing Premium Member

    [​IMG]

    Not an endorsement of Purina, but there is that company's chart. Most all feed companies produce such a chart. Many print it right on the bags.
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2013
  5. Sami57

    Sami57 In the Brooder

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    Jul 30, 2012
    Central mass
    Thanks!, I did check out the advise on the feed bag, but thought individual breeds may have different needs
     
  6. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Crowing Premium Member

    They do.

    You have to know the history of your line or strain. We've got heritage birds that don't start until week 28 and others that don't start until week 36. No way I want them on Layer for months and months before they reach lay. You're right.

    Those bag charts hit a happy medium for most production type birds.
     
  7. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Free Ranging Premium Member 7 Years

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    I do it the easy way--just use an all flock or flock raiser that is 20% protein for their whole lives. Put some crushed oyster shell out and feed themback their eggshells. Good for the chicks, the hens and the roosters.
     

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