Star Milling

Raising Chicks is Easy!

photo of fluffy baby chick walking

Raising chicks in the backyard has become very popular over the past few years. You get fresh eggs every week, plus they have great personalities! Watching these little guys scurry around the yard and play with each other is very entertaining.

Like with any other pet, you need to learn how to care for them to ensure the happiness of you and your birds. For example, did you know that chickens are more than 70% water? Large chickens can drink 1 to 2 cups a day. So it is important to leave plenty of water out for your birds. They will reward you with their great energy and delicious eggs!

Hens under 1 year old are called "pullets". Pullets usually start laying eggs at 6 months old. Experts say a chicken is in its prime from 1 to 2 years old, and 4-5 year old chickens are considered old. But you will still receive a lot of eggs from a 5 year old hen.

Fun fact: There are more chickens living on earth than people! Want more tips of raising chickens? Check out our printable Poultry Care Guidelines. We also offer some of the best poultry feed available. Click here to take a look.

Which is Better: Extruded or Pelleted Feed?

photo of pelleted feed for chicks - Bran Nugget
Pelleted Feed

Let's start of by explaining the difference between extruded and pelleted feed. Extrusion is a process in which feed is ground, quickly cooked at a high temperature, and processed under high pressure. The feed is then pushed through a die, which makes the feed a unique and uniform shape. Extrusion often improves the feed's digestibility.

Pelleted feeds are not cooked, and are prepared at a much lower temperature and pressure. Both pelleting and extrusion can improve the digestibility of raw feed ingredients, specifically grains such as corn, oats and barley. The more grains there are in a formula, the more likely extrusion will improve the feed's digestibility.

There are examples of each feed type below. The extruded feed has a unique triangle shape, while the pelleted feed is, well, pellet shaped.

photo of full-grown healthy chicken
Pelleted Feed