It's almost time to switch scratch to something different.. Any ideas?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by gumpsgirl, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. gumpsgirl

    gumpsgirl Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    Now that spring is upon us and the weather is getting warmer, it is getting close to the time where we need to think about switching scratch to another morning treat. I don't know about your feathery friends, but mine have gotten used to getting that morning treat and I'm going to have to find something different to replace it with.

    Sooo... Any suggestions or ideas??? I give them black oiled sunflower seeds in the evenings, which I could possibly do in the morning and do something else in the evening.

    I'm mainly starting this thread to help everyone (including myself!) start brain storming about how to make that morning scratch transition! I think my chickens would go into meltdown mode if they didn't receive their morning treat! [​IMG]

    So what are you planning on switching to or what would you switch to? [​IMG]
  2. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Millet, rye, oats or a scratch feed that has a high % of other things not just corn. I don't give plain cracked corn in the warm months but I do give mixed grain scratch.
  3. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

    Aug 25, 2008
    How about your leftover breadcrumbs? [​IMG] If you ever have any!

    Actually, I use veggie peels, greens, whatever comes out of the kitchen that day. Scrambled eggs with the shells, (whirl the whole mess in the blender), garden weeds, they LOVE dandelion greens from the yard.

    As long as mine get some kind of snack, they don't much care what it is!
  4. miss_jayne

    miss_jayne Lady_Jayne

    Jun 26, 2008
    Columbiaville, MI
    i like seed wheat. and it will seed the run!
  5. gumpsgirl

    gumpsgirl Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    Great suggestions!!!

    Thank you guys!

    I've been been stumped at trying to figure out what to give my spoiled rotten birds once it gets to warm for corn. [​IMG]
  6. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Quote:I think that chickens learn to associate our approach with something good, a food treat or release into the yard, so they always rush the fence & raise a clamor when we see them. And it's rewarding for us humans to be able to give these birds we love something they enjoy to eat. But chickens don't always have to have a food treat, and if they don't get it they'll quickly resume their regularly scheduled programming. Sometimes all they need is a few kind words and a handful of grass to be satisfied.

    I give my flock things the family can't eat but they can, watermelon rinds, apple cores, stale cereal, etc. They get it when it's available, and not on a regular schedule. I keep a bit of cracked corn (corn crack!) on hand for an occasional treat, but especially to use when I need to catch an escaped bird. The other day a pen gate got left open and the whole flock ran out before their afternoon recess. I wanted to get them to come back into the pen, and had to simply shake that corn crack can to get them all to run back home.
  7. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've been cutting cabbage into fine shreds for my hens morning and evening because the plant enzymes benefit them in ways one can't duplicate with dry feed. It's a good choice because it's inexpensive, low in sugars and they love to play with it first.
  8. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    I am with MissPrissy, my girls get their mixed grain scratch all the time. I just do not give them as much corn stuff in the warmer w months but colder months I mix cracked corn and scratch. They get their leftover treats all the time... steamed rice, veggies or whatever I cooked for dinner the night before.
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2009
  9. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    Let's see, it is mid-morning and 24° with light snow. (Everything is covered again; the chickens may be okay with going out on it now that they've grown accustomed.) Tomorrow night, the temperature is supposed to go down well into the single digitS' . . . fahrenheit. Ah yes, uh, Spring [​IMG]!?

    Greens and sprouted grains? When we can actually get into the garden, it won't be too long for the greens to be coming along. I've sprouted grain for my own use, well, alfalfa. But, maybe wheat or oats would be a good choice (and follow Miss_Jayne's idea).

  10. doglady

    doglady New Egg

    Mar 9, 2009
    Mt. Desert Island, Maine
    I give mine scratch when I close them in for the night. I read somewhere that it is good in their crops overnight when it is cold out. As the days lengthen and the snow melts, I'll stop giving it to them. I have also started giving them rabbit pellets. I noticed they would pull anything green out of the nest box straw so I gave them the bunny's alfalfa. They ate every scrid. Last night, I tried bunny pellets and they liked those too. In the morning, they get any left over vegetable peelings.
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2009

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