When to switch to laying feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by chairboy, Dec 10, 2010.

  1. chairboy

    chairboy Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 31, 2010
    North central PA
    I will likely run out of my most recent bag of starter feed when my flock of 7 (with at least 1 rooster and possibly 2) when they will be about 16-17 weeks old. If I buy another bag of starter I'll be using it after they would likely should start to lay eggs. If I buy the laying feed I would obviously start to use it a few weeks early. Any suggestions on what I choice I should make?
     
  2. annie3001

    annie3001 My Girls

    Jun 11, 2009
    Ct.
    Hello.
    I switched at about 12 weeks, I mixed it in with the layer. I am at work, so I dont remember the name of feed I use. I believe its by "blue seal" [​IMG]
     
  3. Pequena Bandada

    Pequena Bandada Small Flock

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    Jun 13, 2010
    I'd buy another bag of starter and then supplement with oyster shell when they start laying. That way they're getting higher protein with the starter feed and an appropriate amount of calcium before they start laying (layer has too much for developing chickens).
     
  4. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    Most people wait until the chickens are laying--you can feed grower or flock raise with oyster shell in a separate container so anyone that is laying can get it free choice. Layer feed has extra calcium that is bad for those birds not using it to cover their eggs since their kidneys have to filter it out--this leads to health problems down the line. If I were you (and this is what I actually do) I'd buy another bag of grower and, once the birds start to lay, mix any that you have left with the layer. It won't go to waste.
     
  5. chairboy

    chairboy Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 31, 2010
    North central PA
    Thanks for your replies. I will mix layer in with the starter when they start to lay - that is a simple and obvious solution I should have realized. I am unsure about Oyster shell even though I have read a little about it. Do I keep it separate from feed or add it in with the feed. I guess what I need is a simple description of where to put it, how much and starting when.
     
  6. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    Quote:I have a special feeder that I use because, with 40+ birds, I feed a lot. Most just use a small tuna can or similar container that they tack up on the wall. Don't mix it with the feed or you're defeating the purpose. You can start it any time--the birds will peck at it but not bother with it until they need it, refill as needed. For as few birds as you have, a small bag will last you for as long as you need it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2010

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