mixing layer feed with scratch

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by two early, Mar 28, 2011.

  1. two early

    two early Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 21, 2011
    I bought a big bag of chicken scratch before I got layer hens. Only had one lonely roo. Now with the hens, I want to mix in organic layer feed. Is this a good idea? They are free ranging also, but right now they are getting used to the hen house. So is half/half mix ok? Any thoughts?
     
  2. schellie69

    schellie69 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 8, 2009
    Kansas
    Use the scratch as a way to get them into their pen or as a treat. Scratch is like junk food to humans. Give them layer feed free choice and oyster shell and grit but use the scratch as a treat.
     
  3. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    80% layer, 20% scratch, if typical scratch quality. If the blend is better, might go 30% of total, but it would have to be a 6 or 7 grain blend. If you keep your ratios right, you won't notice any egg production drop.
     
  4. hennyannie

    hennyannie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2011
    North Carolina
    I think any mix would be okay, but it is best to feed good quality layer only to laying hens. Also they will pick though the feed to get the parts of the scratch they want so this will cause them to rake out and waste feed. It may be best to finish up the scratch as a treat in small servings.
     
  5. chickencrazyinHT

    chickencrazyinHT Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 19, 2010
    I agree with the above post. We used to mix and our hens wasted a lot of food. They would dig and sling food all over the ground trying to get to the scratch. Now we only do laying pellets give them scratch as a treat every few days.
     
  6. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    Jun 1, 2009
    Ohio
    Quote:I would say that it depends on the type of "Scratch" the OP is using on weather or not it is like, "junk food to humans". If you are referring to all "scratch" then you couldn't be any more wrong.

    I use a all "grain" pigeon feed as a "scratch" mix and it is far from being, "junk food".

    Crude Protein, not less than 17.00%
    Crude Fat, not less than 2.00%
    Crude Fiber, not more than 6.00%
    Moisture, not more than 12.00%
    INGREDIENTS
    Canadian Peas, Popcorn, Austrian Peas, Wheat, Oat Groats, Milo, Red Millet, Maple Peas

    To the above mix I add BOSS (Black Oil Sunflower Seed), Hemp Seed, Rice Linseed and Linseed.

    Chris
     
  7. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Yeah...that's true. I used to think all scratch was "junk food" because the kind of scratch I get from TSC basically is - it's tasty fluff, very low protein percentage - basically cracked corn w/a little seed mixed in. But what some call scratch is a proper mixture of diff. grains, etc. with as much protein as layer feed. I think most of the premixed scratch mixtures is like junkfood - but read the nutritional label to be sure.
    The "junk food" scratch shouldn't be mixed with layer feed. It's like hiding M&Ms in a bowl of broccoli - most will toss aside the healthy stuff for the sweet stuff, and feed will be wasted. Nothing wrong with tossing a few handfuls of scratch out in the mornings, or in the evenings to draw your birds in close for the evening....
     

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