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Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by ilovedragons2, Apr 27, 2012.
When can I start adding adult food or scratch to my 5 week old chicks food?
If they are outside and have access to grit/free range they can have any feed or treats. If your adult food is layer feed you don't want them to eat that. Layer feed is too high in calcium that's not good for birds not laying. You can either change all feed over to grower feed and provide oyster or egg shells free choice to layers or keep the chicks away from layer feed.
What's the rush? Scratch is just about 1/2 the nutritional value of feed, at just about the same price.
18 weeks is a good age. give them scrapes (no meat) and lots of grass clippings and they will be healthy and happy!
"Flock Raiser" is a chick to adult feed. No calcium for the layers. Imagine a mother hen taking her 5 week old babies around the farm yard. They would eat any and everything they see. As long as they have grit, just about any type of food is good.
Bugs are meat, so all scraps are good.
In a week my chicks will be 4 weeks old. At that time I'll start to mix adult ration in with their chick ration. I'll do this until the chick ration is gone and then they're on adult ration from there on.
They forage a lot in the yard, so they are getting quite a mix of other foodstuffs. They will hit the feeder in the morning and again in the evening...but during the day they're to busy chasing millers and scratching for grubbs in the garden to go to the feeder very often.
I think that is too soon to add adult food to their diet. The research I have done says that 18 weeks is a good age. The diet is formulated for development and I believe to develop a healthy chick that will grow slowly into a healthy egg layer she needs to be on formulated chick feed until the recommended age. This is just my opinion. Besides the price of the feed is the same.
Good to know. I've been told by several local sources to feed the chick crumbles for 4 weeks then switch the regular feed. I'll take your advice, its obvious that they are stil growing out.
This may help you out some.
A balanced feed meant as the sole ration for chicks from hatching to twelve weeks of age.
At 12 weeks of age the birds can be changed to Grower or Developer. Starter can be Medicated or Non-Medicated when Medicated it is with either Amprolium or Lasalocid. Starter is available in Mash, Crumble or Pellet form
Stater/ Grower --
A balanced feed meant as the sole ration for chicks from hatching to chickens begin to lay, this feed can be Medicated or Non-Medicated. If medicated it will be with either Amprolium or Lasalocid. Starter/ Grower is available mostly in Crumble or Pellet form.
Feed as the sole ration to chicks 12 weeks of age as a finisher. Grower feed is meant to feed until the chickens begin to lay, then bird can be switched to a complete Laying. Most Grower feed is Non-Medicated but some are Medicated with Bacitracin. Grower is mostly available in available in Crumble or Pellet form.
Finisher -- See above for Grower
Feed as the sole diet to laying hens maximum production of eggs. Do not feed Layer feed to poultry, which are not in production because of the high calcium levels in the diet. This is particularly true of young growing birds. Layer is available in Mash, Crumble or Pellet form.
Layer/ Breeder --
Feed as the sole diet to laying hens and breeders for maximum production and for improved hatchability. Do not feed Layer feed to poultry, which are not in production because of the high calcium levels in the diet. This is particularly true of young growing birds. Layer/ Breeder is available in Pellet form.
Scratch Grain/ Corn (Maze) --
Is mostly used as a treat and should for the most part be feed separate from there sole feed (example - there Layer feed). Scratch should not exceed 40% of there diet when feeding a high protein feed. (Sole feed 20% protein or better) You may start feeding Scratch Grain at around 12 weeks of age.
Oyster Shells --
A Calcium supplement used to increase intake of laying fowl. Oyster Shells should not be offered to Non-Laying Fowl (Chicks, Growers, Non-Laying Hens and Roosters).
* Note --
Amprolium - which goes by the trade names Corid and Amprovine, Amprolium, Amprol, Anticoccid and is a thiamine analog, competitively inhibits the active transport of thiamine (B1). Amprolium is used in the prevention and treatment of coccidiosis.
Lasalocid - goes by the trade name Bovatec. Bovatec (lasalocid) is a coccidiocide that kills coccidia. It is an ionophore that moves potassium, sodium, calcium and magnesium into the cell causing the cell to burst. Bovatec works primarily on a single developmental stage of coccidia, providing a more narrow range of action than Deccox.
Bacitracin - Bacitracin can also go by the names Bacitracin Methylene Disalicylate and BMD. Bacitracin in Broiler And Replacement Chickens is an aid in prevention and control of necrotic enteritis caused by Clostridium perfringens susceptible to bacitracin methylene disalicylate.