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19

LOHMANN TIERZUCHT

MANAGEMENT GUIDE

19

NUTRITION

Pre-layer feed should be used for a short pe-

riod of time before a flock starts being sup-

plied with phase 1 layer feed. This leads to

a smooth transition from the developer feed

(low calcium and low nutrient density) to a

diet with high calcium and nutrient levels.

It helps to avoid the often reduced appe-

tite/daily feed intake during early produc-

tion. Typically, pre-layer feed contains about

2.0–2.5% calcium. This is too much for a

typical feed for rearing but not enough for a

bird starting to produce eggs. From a nutri-

tional point of view, it’s therefore considered

a compromise and never as “optimal” feed.

Nevertheless, it’s worthwhile to use pre-layer

feed for a short period of time. Correct use

can enhance the uniformity of a pullet flock.

It’s especially beneficial for flocks with very

low uniformity and also aids the develop-

ment of Ca-metabolism in medullar bones.

Since pre-layer feed is a compromise feed for

the short transition period, it cannot supply a

bird in full lay sufficiently. Therefore, it cannot

be used when feed logistics and correct tim-

ing do not work.

Please consider the following recommenda-

tions while using pre-layer feed:

Start using pre-layer feed dependent on

to the birds sexual maturity, age and their

standard body weights.

Use pre-layer feed for about 10 days with a

maximum of 1 kg per bird.

The wrong way to use pre-layer feed is ei-

ther to start using it too early and/or use it

too long.

For example if the onset of lay is scheduled

for the 19

th

weeks of age, you may start feed-

ing the birds with pre-layer feed only after

they are 17 weeks old.

In case of an earlier or later production, ad-

just this schedule accordingly.

Age at transfer

Feeding program

week

days

kg feed

Followed by

kg feed

15

105

1.0

1.0

16

112

0.5

1.0

17

119

1.0

18

126

0.5

after 18 after 126

immediately supply start lay feed or layer phase 1 feed

Correct Use of Pre-Layer Feed