Feeding Scraps and Feed together?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by anonku, Aug 27, 2010.

  1. anonku

    anonku Hatching

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    Aug 27, 2010
    When feeding chickens scraps how do you know how much feed they need?

    Or is it a good idea to have an auto feeder anyway?

    Just want to save on feed as much as possible?

    How much scratch do they need? And what are good homemade substitutes?

    Thanks.
     
  2. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Songster

    Dec 28, 2009
    I keep feeders in with my chickens so they can eat as much as they want. some breeds eat more than others. as far as scraps I am constantly throwing scraps in to them. if they want them then they will eat them, if not they will eat them later. Chickens will eat pretty much anything. I will try and find a link to things they absolutely shouldn't have though.
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=2593-Treats_Chart
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
  3. Muggsmagee

    Muggsmagee Menagerie Mama

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    Dec 15, 2009
    Central NY
    D'Angelo N Va. :

    I keep feeders in with my chickens so they can eat as much as they want. some breeds eat more than others. as far as scraps I am constantly throwing scraps in to them. if they want them then they will eat them, if not they will eat them later. Chickens will eat pretty much anything. I will try and find a link to things they absolutely shouldn't have though.

    Agreed. I've read somewhere the "treats" should not exceed 4% of daily rations...but I'm wondering if that was more for chicks. Hmmm. As long as the scraps are fresh keep feeding them what they will eat. I throw some scrap in the yard, and some on my compost pile. Whatever scrap they don't eat is fine. They will turn the soil for me and eat the bugs and grubs that are there. On the plus side...they hate earthworms so those guys get left alone! Win/win/win!!!

    I feed my chickens their feed and BOSS (black oil sunflower seeds) in the morning...any scraps or treats are given in the afternoon and at night. The feeders are never completely empty the next day, but most of the feed is gone.

    If your chickens are allowed to free range...that will help cut down on feed costs. Homemade alternatives? I haven't come up with alternatives yet...our feed store is the most inexpensive way for us to go.

    I have been a little confused over scratch. I've been told that they need it more in the winter to occupy themselves...but if your chickens are pastured, or free range, not so much. If anyone has more insight on scratch, I'd sure love to hear it!​
     
  4. grapesoda

    grapesoda In the Brooder

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    Aug 18, 2010
    Really, yours hate earthworms??? I just watched mine fight over some earthworms my 5 year old dug up.
     
  5. Muggsmagee

    Muggsmagee Menagerie Mama

    4,493
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    Dec 15, 2009
    Central NY
    Really, yours hate earthworms??? I just watched mine fight over some earthworms my 5 year old dug up.

    It was something I was afraid they would go after...I spent a few weekends gathering a variety of earthworms in unmentionable places [​IMG] (thousands and thousands plus the egg sacs)...I really wanted to raise them and collect their castings for my gardens. (To each their own!) I decided I'd put them in the compost instead of keeping them in a tub. I've seen the chickens play with them, but they don't eat them.

    When I weeded out my flower beds this spring I tried feeding some to the hens that hovered around me. NOT ONE of them would eat them. As I was just starting with chickens, I assumed it was a universal thing. I'm more worried about the starlings getting my worms than I am my own chickens.

    After a good rain the other day, I filled and moved their waterer, and revealed 3 fatty earthworms...one of the young chickens played with one, then dropped it. They don't refuse any other treat, so I'm not sure what is so different about our worms OR chickens? They LOVE Japanese beatles, mealworms (we raise), and any grub or worm we find on our veggies. [​IMG]
     
  6. TheMainException

    TheMainException Songster

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    Jul 7, 2010
    Lebanon, PA
    Mine hate earthworms too. They run off if I throw any in their run. My meekest roo just stares at them after jumping back a few paces. I love watching his head cocked down at them and then up at me as if to say "why on earth would you give me that? I don't even know what that is!"
     

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