I was picking up some layer pellets at my local feed store this afternoon, and since they had some baby chicks in, I had to go over and look at them. They had some cute little Delaware's, like my hen, Little, and some others that looked like Brown Leghorn's but I was told weren't. Anyway... a father and his young son were looking to get a few, and I was listening to the instructions the actually very nice and helpful feed store employee was giving them. He was saying, they need to be on starter mash for the first 8 weeks (good so far), then after that you switch them over to scratch until they're about ready to lay, then switch them to layer feed (last part OK too). My eyes were wide with disbelief about him recommending that they be on ONLY SCRATCH from 8 weeks until 4-5 months of age! I didn't want to be rude and butt in, but I was also concerned about the well being of the new chicken owner's chicks. The man and his son left before I found a polite opportunity to give him accurate advice and refer him to BYC. After the man left, I did talk to the feed store employee, and suggested that maybe the chicks should be switched to grower feed at 8 weeks rather than scratch, but he said that they don't have grower feed!