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#110346 - 08/16/13 07:13 PM Feeding Pullets
WilCrow Offline

Registered: 04/23/13
Posts: 10
Loc: Kansas
I have two barred rock pullets that are about 19 weeks old. They have the run of an area fifty feet by fifty feet or so and have access to seeds, bugs and whatever is in that area. I read I should give them oats with their grower ration so they would not grow too fast. I didn't know what kind of oats to feed them so I fed them scratch feed instead. They stopped eating the grower completely. The instructions on a bag of layer ration said I should start giving them that ration as their sole feed at sixteen weeks, but they don't seem to be too interested in the pellets either. When I phased out the scratch I noticed that their keel bones felt very prominent and when I gave them more scratch feed they ate like they were starving. I got some oyster shell but they bill that out of the feeder and I have no idea how much if any they are eating.

The question is what should I be doing to get them ready to lay eggs.

Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.


#110918 - 11/08/13 12:28 AM Re: Feeding Pullets [Re: ]
CJR Offline
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8499
Loc: Montana
Well, I feed medicated Starter crumbles until the pullets start laying. Then I mix Layer Ration, your choice (or pellets) about half and half for a week or two, then all Layer Ration.

I feel that Grower is best for cockerels/pullets grown for Fryers, broilers, roasters. Scratch is CANDY for chickens and they love it like CANDY and do not need it at all. I feed my birds about a T per bird at evening, as a tamer, and they, of course, wait for it, and I am happy that they get so responsive--but they do not need it for best nutrition or prep for a body which will produce EGGS! Grit is free choice, and Oyster Shell is not of much interest to pullets, who are programed, with good feed, to have enough calcium to produce a lot of eggs with good shells, without the supplimental Oyster Shell for even up to a year. But after a few months of laying, I offer it free choice, they will eat it IF they need it. My hens, up to 10 years old eat LOTs of Oystershell, and it is kept before them all the time. Pullets, like children, do not know what's good for them, so we must teach them, and help them grow and mature into great hens! Good luck, CJR


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