When to start layer feed?


9 Years
Jul 14, 2010
New Boston, NH
Brain cramp.. Do I start layer feed at 16 weeks or 18 weeks or later? I should remember from my older girls.. I have 10 pullets that came to me May 30th at one day old.. I also have 6 older hens and a roo... Thanks all!!
Since there is no super power or magic in Layer, there's no rush. Some birds don't begin to lay until 24 weeks or later. Just keep them on good quality Starter or Grower and if you wish to switch them to Layer when you find eggs, that's fine. Layer is merely Grower, essentially, with a high dose of calcium that only egg laying birds need.
I’d suggest you get a bag of oyster shell and offer that to them on the side when they start to lay. The ones that need the calcium for the egg shells seem to instinctively know to eat the oyster shell. The others should not eat that much. That way you can feed the rest of that bag of Starter or Grower before you switch to Layer so you don’t waste the rest of that bag. Or you can keep feeding Starter or Grower or Flock Raiser with oyster shell on the side and never switch to Layer. Since I practically always have a mixed age flock with chicks that should not eat Layer, that’s what I do.

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