How to turn scratch into feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by huevosranchitos, Sep 17, 2016.

  1. huevosranchitos

    huevosranchitos New Egg

    Sep 17, 2016
    I am interested in mixing my own chicken feed. I want complete nutrition, it does NOT have to be organic, soy-free, or meat free. I understand that scratch grains are not complete nutrition for chickens. However, the ingredients in scratch are also the main ingredients in homemade and processed feed: Corn, wheat, barley, milo, millet, BOSS. This has me thinking, what do I need to add to turn chicken scratch into a complete feed? It seems that the only things missing from scratch are more protein (from meat products or from grains such as soybeans, peas, or lentils) and nutrients (from kelp granules and brewers yeast). I could mix something up for pretty cheap using scratch and wild bird food as a base. Any thoughts/ideas/suggestions are greatly appreciated.
  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    I typed 'homemade chicken feed' into the BYC search box and LOTS of threads popped up. Might want to give it a try. Good luck!
  3. huevosranchitos

    huevosranchitos New Egg

    Sep 17, 2016
    I have compared the scratch grains (and wild bird food) to a multitude of home made chicken food recipes at BYC and elsewhere online. That is actually what prompted my question... With all the slamming of scratch grains as an incomplete feed, I guess what I'm wondering is, given the grains listed above (corn, wheat, barley, milo, millet, BOSS) does anyone see a problem with using that as a base for chicken feed? And, if there is no problem, what else would you recommend adding?
  4. balloonflower

    balloonflower Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 25, 2016
    To me, the difference between mixing your own and starting with something such as this is that it completely lacks a protein component, and you have no idea of the ratios of each grain. Wild bird seed mixes are usually higher in millet, while many scratch grain mixes sold for chooks are heavily corn.
  5. Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay

    Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay Chillin' With My Peeps

    Scratch misses amino acids, vitamins, macro and trace minerals, and specialty ingredients that make a complete, wholesome feed for your chickens.
  6. Folly's place

    Folly's place True BYC Addict

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    There's no cheap way to make good food out of either scratch or wild bird seed mixes. Buy your birds a balanced feed and use the other stuff as treats. Mary
  7. The reason homemade feeds are not a good choice is the lack of all minerals, protein ratios are not correct...Why premade diets are called balanced feeds..Time is taken into creating the best feed from chicks to layers....

    Good luck

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