when to start layer feed?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by fishguts, Aug 21, 2012.

  1. fishguts

    fishguts New Egg

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    Aug 2, 2012
    Long Island, NY
    Hi Everyone,

    My RIR is 5 months old and just started laying eggs 3 days ago. She has laid 3 days in a row like a champ! I know we should start her on layer feed for the extra needed calcium, but my other chickens are only 12 weeks old, and not laying eggs yet. Is it ok to change the feed if the younger chicks arn't laying? Is it ok to keep my RIR on grower feed for the next couple months? Any help on this would be great!

    Dara
     
  2. Rhoise

    Rhoise Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 26, 2012
    Boise, Idaho
    I put Oyster shells in a tuna can nailed to the side of the run free choice, the young ones peck scratch and spill it, but the older girls eat what they need and can get the extra calcium and could stay on chick starter for a few more weeks. Fix her a treat of yougurt mixed with layer pellets if you have time in the afternoons, that helped my older pullets harden up the shells when they first started laying.
     
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  3. fishguts

    fishguts New Egg

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    Aug 2, 2012
    Long Island, NY
    Thanks for the tip.I'm off to the supermarket.
     
  4. Rhoise

    Rhoise Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 26, 2012
    Boise, Idaho
    Oh by the way the tuna can was a recycled one no tuna in it although i'm sure theyd love that too, i just copied the idea from someone on here, it was a cheap dish and they don't poop in it if its at the level of their backs
     
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  5. K-9Dog

    K-9Dog Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 23, 2012
    probably start layer feed at 16 weeks - 18 weeks or so. try to do it before they start laying. i mix a bit of the oyster shell into the regular food but ot much - 1 5 lb bags works for 50 lbs feed and i also use the nutrena naturewise layer feed which i think is the best out there for my availability locally. probably do not even need the oyster shells with this feed. eggs shells are thick - never an issue so far...
     
  6. fishguts

    fishguts New Egg

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    Aug 2, 2012
    Long Island, NY
    Thank you, K-dog.
     
  7. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    There is no magic in layer feed.

    It is essentially the same as starter/grower or raiser except that the calcium carbonate is blended right in. No big deal. I feed layer simply because it is the least expensive feed my local feed mill grinds, by far!!! They don't grind their own grower/raiser/game bird. Too bad.

    Offer the calcium source and you won't NEED to feed layer. Can if you wish though.
     
  8. K-9Dog

    K-9Dog Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 23, 2012
    i read many times that layer feed has less protein...
     
  9. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    A good feed store will have feeds that offer choices. I can buy Layer in 16%, 17% and 20% protein.
     
  10. cajun1

    cajun1 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2012
    Idaho
    Same here with my local grinder/feed store. Plus theirs has calcium added in the feed.
     

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