Is scratch-feeding bad?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by grullablue, Nov 6, 2008.

  1. grullablue

    grullablue Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 27, 2008
    Madison, Wisconsin
    So I've read on a few posts on the forum to not feed scratch feed. Is this bad? I just supplement my girls with it...a treat, not a whole lot.... they have their regular layer feed, grit and oyster shells aside from this.

    Is there a reason they should not get scratch?

    I have been having problems with egg-eating, and I thought with the scratch, it might keep them busy foraging for it and not going after eggs! Curtains over the nest boxes seem to be helping... but wanted to ask about scratch feed in general. If it's not beneficial for them to have it, I'll save my money!

    Although I do like to throw some inside too, I sprinkle DE around, and then scratch, so they can mix the shavings up!

  2. chickensforever

    chickensforever Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 16, 2007
    Bellevue, WA
    There's no problem with feeding scratch, as long as it's not too much. I give my girls a handful every morning to keep them busy and when it gets cold at night I also give them another handful in the afternoon. And they love it! [​IMG]
  3. SunAngel

    SunAngel Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 20, 2008
    Chambersburg, Pa.
    I toss a scoopful in the run for mine each morning. They seem to love it and are doing great. On colder days/nights, I put some in a bowl inside the coop for them to fill up on before going to sleep, if they want.
  4. AllChookUp

    AllChookUp Will Shut Up for Chocolate

    May 7, 2008
    Frozen Lake, MN
    I've been using more than a handful, now that it's been getting colder. Why would that be a bad thing? It doesn't make up the majority of their feed, by any stretch.
  5. TaLani

    TaLani ~ Gemini Chick ~

    Oct 2, 2008
    Bryson City, NC
    From what I know as long as you don't give them too much it's perfectly fine. The only negative thing I've heard is not to give them too much in the warm spring/summer months since it raises their body temps too much. See posts above me of the people who live in much colder climates than I do. [​IMG]
  6. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Scratch isn't bad, but it should be viewed as a treat. You want them to eat their layer feed because it's a complete food nutrition-wise. Scratch is more to give them something to do.
  7. Chicken Woman

    Chicken Woman Incredible Egg

    Oct 16, 2008
    Because its pretty cold here at night I toss a couple handfuls on the coop floor in the late afternoon to keep them warm. I dont use it in the summer at all.
  8. what was i thinking

    what was i thinking Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 1, 2008
    cny ny
    i turn the light on @ 5:30am in the coop for them before i got to work. so i throw them a handful or two, hoping the will eat that instead of each other til i get back at 10am and let them out to free range.

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