Feeding is essential to the growth of any living thing weather human, animal or even insects and cannot survive without proper feeding.

In poultry, feeding is very important as it determines how well your birds will perform but the problem with poultry farmers when it comes to feeding is that they find it difficult to determine the quantity of feed that is needed to raise the farm birds from their day old to 6 weeks or the stage of maturity. Understanding that a growing bird needs to feed properly will help you go a long way in raising your poultry birds and also help to reduce stunted growth among the birds.

During the brooding stage, it is advisable to provide feed constantly for the birds till they reach 3 weeks of age. At brooding stage that is below 3 weeks, it expected to provide starter the birds with a starter feed either marsh or crumble starter feed depending on the farmer choice due to its particle size and rich in protein to help build the birds tissues to make them fit to grow. After the third week they are to switch to grower or finisher depending on how long you want to groom them before sale. For grooming above 8 weeks, it’s advised to feed them with grower feed for at least 2 weeks before switching to finisher feed this is because grower has high energy content which enables the birds to perform activities. When consuming grower feed, it seems they have stunted growth because the protein content in the grower feed is not as much as that in the starter feed. But if for meat purposes, farmers to include grower feed as to help reduce the cost of production and maximize profit.

When the brooding is completed, the birds are supposed to be fed with finisher feed but due to the particle size of the finisher feed, it’s advisable that the feed be mixed with starter crumble especially if you are feeding them with pellet type of finisher feed. The reason for this being that the starter will help the birds to adjust with feed on the starter and the same time crush the finisher particle before picking them. The size of the finisher particle is why it might be difficult for the birds to pick the feed. Then feed them with the mixture for a week before feeding them completely with finisher pellet.

Below is the feeding chat for broiler species of birds meant only for meat purposes.

Bird Age (week) Feed Consumed per bird (KG) Cumulative feed consumed (KG) Average body weight (KG) Average body weight gain (KG)
Week 1 0.167 0.167 0.185 0.185
Week 2 0.375 0.542 0.465 0.280
Week 3 0.65 1.192 0.943 0.478
Week 4 0.945 2.137 1.524 0.581
Week 5 1.215 3.352 2.191 0.667
Week 6 1.434 4.786 2.857 0.666


Note that:

There should be enough feeding trays, so that every bird feeds at the same time. This will help to reduce the gap in their size.

Ensure proper feeding at all time.

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