Feed store recommended I feed my girls Hen Scratch

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by briannanoelle1, Sep 4, 2016.

  1. briannanoelle1

    briannanoelle1 Out Of The Brooder

    38
    4
    41
    Apr 7, 2016
    But I've been reading everywhere that scratch is just a treat. I've been feeding them the Farmers Best Hen Scratch with oyster shells on the side this whole time and I get good quality eggs, but now I'm worried they aren't getting the nutrition they need.
     
  2. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

    16,998
    5,284
    501
    Mar 9, 2014
    Oregon
    My Coop
    Where are you located? How old are the birds in question?
    This is what I found for the feed you referenced: http://farmerswarehouse.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/FARMERS-BEST-HEN-SCRATCH.jpg and, yes, as it shows it is insufficient as a primary diet to support long-term health and production.....as an example, the protein is only listed as 8.5%, even the barest bones/lowest quality later ration stands around 14% or higher. That being said, young birds in their first laying cycle are more likely to be able to continue production with poor nutritional support than older birds in subsequent laying cycles. Likewise, birds in an area where there is sufficient forage available to supplement the poor base feed can often make up for the deficiencies enough to support continued production.
    In short, *I* would not use your current feed program, even if I were seeing no cause for concern at this point as nutritional deficiency is something that will have long-term effects. I would suggest selecting a more nutritional base diet and use the scratch as it is intended, as a supplemental feed or treat.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. FARMER3112

    FARMER3112 Out Of The Brooder

    30
    1
    21
    Jul 23, 2016
    California
    I believe it is a threat my hens just started laying just gave them layer pellets. They are winning for corn scratch but they don't need it.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by