wondering about medicated feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by andlo, Jul 1, 2008.

  1. andlo

    andlo Hatching

    Jun 30, 2008
    Hi! We just hatched 7 baby chicks. We bought starter chick feed. We read about feeding chicks medicated chick feed. What constitutes medicated chick feed? Our feed has lots of vitamins in it. Do we need our feed to be medicated? Thanks!
  2. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Songster

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    If the feed is medicated, it will say so right on the bag. Medicated chick feed has antibiotics in it that help prevent cocci or other illness. You do not have to feed them medicated feed unless you want to.
  3. We fed medicated for one bag as a deterrent to coccidiosis. I've been told that if your chicks are going in with older birds that may have cocci but no symptoms you should consider medicated feed. Young birds are highly vulnerable.
  4. Dennis1979

    Dennis1979 In the Brooder

    Jun 17, 2008
    Houston, Texas
    My understanding is that Amprolium, which is the medicine used in most "Medicated" chick starters, is not an antibiotic so if the use of antibiotics is a concern to you, then you need not worry. Also, based on my research, I understand that Amprolium leaves no residue in the meat of the bird either. So on the surface Amprolium seems fairly harmless and can prevent cocci in the chicks. If I used it I think I would do so for only a few weeks and then switch to un-medicated feed.

    That said, Amprolium is still a drug and just because the FDA or USDA or any one of those wonderful trustworthy government agencies [​IMG] says its safe, well who knows, huh?

    Also, note that Cocci is less likely to occur in a small backyard flock. My brother just raised 25 Leghorns from day-old to coop with no medicine and the birds are all healthy.

  5. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC
    The "medicated" part of the feed is a coccidiostat.
    Coccidiosis is a disease birds get as a result of a protozoan infestation, very similar to malarial infiltration. Young birds are particularly susceptible.

    This disease is passed from bird to bird, through droppings and infected tissue. It causes untold intestinal distress, dehydration, and if left unabated, will quickly kill a flock. It is primarliy the result of overcrowding on the same piece land, season after season. In other words, improper management and poor land utilization.
    In a nutshell, where it gets hold, all the birds kept here are susceptible.

    The coccidiostat breaks the life cycle of the protozoan vector and so, in theory, removes the threat. In the end, its one of those things that cant hurt, even if it isn't needed in your particular case.

    Get it, if you can.

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