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When do I change the feed?!?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by newchickmom, Nov 27, 2007.

  1. newchickmom

    newchickmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 8, 2007
    Lafayette, Indiana
    I am confused about the feed. I have 25 pullets and 1 roo that are just over 6 weeks old. The book I have says to give chick starter(18%-20% protein) till 6 weeks, then change to Grower (for Layers 15%-16% protein) till 20 weeks, then Layer (16%-18%protein). It says to use half scratch/half mash to make the Grower feed at 15% protein. What is the Mash?? Is it the Chick starter or the Layer feed?? What do I feed them now? Your help would be greatly appreciated.[​IMG]
     
  2. buc

    buc Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 20, 2007
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    What is the Mash??"

    I don't know I have never used it. I have however used the other feed and I will suggest that as your chics grow and you switch feed do not do it all at once.

    Make a mix of 75 percent current feed with 25 percent what you are transissioning to, then after about 3-5 days up that to 50/50 mix and then to 25/75 and then to a 100 percent new feed.

    Otherwise you might have your chics get the runs or stop eating, either way, not good.
     
  3. devora

    devora Chillin' With My Peeps

    Welcome! Mash, I believe, refers to the style of the food. (I hope others chime in to correct me if I'm wrong here.) I think the book is telling you to mix scratch in w/ your starter to lower the protein.

    We bought the grower in commercial form, no scratch involved, and began giving it at about 19-20 weeks. We did a 50/50 mix of grower/layer pellets at first, gradually getting to 100% layer.

    Scratch we use as a treat, tossed out in handfuls. I guess some folks mix it w/ the food?????
     
  4. newchickmom

    newchickmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 8, 2007
    Lafayette, Indiana
    Should I just keep them on the Chick Starter until it is time to transition them over to the Layer feed? Is it OK to mix a little scratch in with their Chick Starter? Maybe 1:3?
     
  5. mdbucks

    mdbucks Cooped Up

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    if you give scratch you should also give grit, the starter/grower/layer are a complete diet, which chickens can digest without the need for grit, if feeding anything else grit is needed, I owuld sudgest you also give them grit if you free range, give it free choice, they will kknow if they need it or not, most say if you free range they will pick up needed grit from yard.

    http://www.purinamills.com/OurProducts.aspx?product=poultry

    this
    is purinas sujestion for raising, they have a starter/grower combined and recommend feed till the flock starts to lay then switch over. Check bag you are using should have recommendation chart as to what type of feed at what age. Hope this helps
     
  6. ksacres

    ksacres At Your Service

    Nov 16, 2007
    San Antonio TX
    must be an old book. Keep them on a starter/grower ration of a high protein until you get your first eggs. Then you switch to a layer ration. I would not use scratch, except as an occasional treat. Young birds need the protein for growth and feather developement.
     
  7. newchickmom

    newchickmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 8, 2007
    Lafayette, Indiana
    Thank you , the book I've been using is Hobby Farms "Chickens" by Sue Weaver. I guess the feed I have is a Starter/Grower Mash. Is it a good idea to give them a little Scratch in the evenings to help them stay warm (with some grit)?
     
  8. devora

    devora Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:We toss out scratch during the day (a tad...one handful for 5 girls) then a handful of corn before bedtime. They don't always eat all of the corn b/c they free range all day, but it's there if they want it. I think it helps them get thru a cold night. It's either that or issue blankets.
     
  9. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I never give my chicks any scratch till they're around 12 weeks old. They get their starter/grower and chopped boiled eggs and that's about it. If they do get any scratch, use it as a treat and be sure they have access to grit. There are old farmer's ways of mixing feed, but they tended to house/raise their birds differently than ours are and they weren't penned up as much, if the way my grandfather did it is any indication.
     
  10. devora

    devora Chillin' With My Peeps

    Ooops, that's right, I agree. Forgot how young these girls are. But I do wonder if it harms them to give scratch earlier (a wee bit. of course w/ grit). We didn't b/c we were being cautious, but I'm not sure exactly WHY.[​IMG]
     

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