when to switch to layer

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by wundernurse, Apr 26, 2009.

  1. wundernurse

    wundernurse Chillin' With My Peeps

    107
    0
    119
    Jan 26, 2009
    Atlanta
    When should I switch to layer feed?? I have 7 pullets ranging in age from 12-15 weeks old- a BO, RIR, 3 EE and 2 SLW. They get grower feed right now ,and I'm not sure when to switch. Thanks
     
  2. emilyweck

    emilyweck Chillin' With My Peeps

    475
    1
    131
    Apr 9, 2009
    Eugene, Oregon
    When they start laying. Sounds like quite a lovely flock you have!
     
  3. SoJoChickens

    SoJoChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    235
    0
    109
    Mar 9, 2009
    Fountain Green, UT
    Storey's recommends that you start mixing in layer ration at about 18 weeks and increasing the percentage gradually to full layer ration at about 20 weeks.
     
  4. wundernurse

    wundernurse Chillin' With My Peeps

    107
    0
    119
    Jan 26, 2009
    Atlanta
    So if my RIR and BO start laying (they are the oldest), but the others haven't, should they all get layer or do grower with free choice oyster shell until they are all laying (which could be a while)?
     
  5. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    4,726
    128
    281
    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    I know that some hens *can* start laying at 20 weeks or earlier, but most all of mine didn't start until 22-24 weeks. Your girls don't have that big of an age difference. The layer feed isn't supposed to be good for young pullets because the extra calcium isn't good for their kidneys. But if you started the layer feed when the oldest ones were 20 weeks old the younger ones should be able to handle it at 17 weeks. You could do the gradual introduction at that time to even better coddle the younger ones' digestion.

    If the older ones begin laying earlier, perhaps you could separate them at night and give them a bowl of layer feed first thing in the morning before returning them to their flockmates.
     
  6. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,398
    47
    206
    Jul 16, 2007
    Long Island NY
    I switch my birds over gradually at 18 weeks. It hasn't failed me yet.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by