Optimum ratio of Scratch to BOSS for 11-week olds?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Chocobo, Aug 8, 2011.

  1. Chocobo

    Chocobo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 27, 2011
    I have (3) Eleven-Week old chickens and I just bought some scratch and BOSS to give them as a treat.
    From what I have read mixing BOSS with the scratch will raise the protein value which is better for them at a young age.
    What ratio of BOSS to Scratch would be best for them now?
    What ratio would be best once they start laying?

    The Scratch I have has the following properties:
    Crude Protein - at least 10%
    Crude Fat - at least 3%
    Crude Fiber - no more than 5%

    They are in a Tractor so have access to fresh grass and Starter Crumbles at all times.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2011
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Two things. First, the necessary amino acids and other needed mineral/vitamin pack that feed makers incorporate into their commercial feeds can be missing from home mixes of grains without careful study and analysis.

    Second, as they begin to lay, most folks here at BYC go by the axiom that unless one is very knowledgeable and has studied poultry nutrition and has confidence that the feed mix is "complete", then scratch with or without BOSS is supplemental in nature and 90% of their caloric intake from the feed trough is a complete and balanced formula. I pretty much follow that principle myself. I didn't used to be too concerned, but upon careful observation, I find eggs get smaller and the egg counts drops slightly if I do not maintain this 90% rule.

    As always, your mileage may vary.
     
  3. Chocobo

    Chocobo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 27, 2011
    Fred's Hens :

    Two things. First, the necessary amino acids and other needed mineral/vitamin pack that feed makers incorporate into their commercial feeds can be missing from home mixes of grains without careful study and analysis.

    Second, as they begin to lay, most folks here at BYC go by the axiom that unless one is very knowledgeable and has studied poultry nutrition and has confidence that the feed mix is "complete", then scratch with or without BOSS is supplemental in nature and 90% of their caloric intake from the feed trough is a complete and balanced formula. I pretty much follow that principle myself. I didn't used to be too concerned, but upon careful observation, I find eggs get smaller and the egg counts drops slightly if I do not maintain this 90% rule.

    As always, your mileage may vary.

    I didn't mean to imply that I was going to be using the scratch/boss mix to replace their feed.
    It will still be a treat and constitute less than 10% of their food but I figured since I had the scratch and the boss there is probably on optimum mix for their current age since they require more protein now.​
     
  4. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady Premium Member

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    upstate SC
    I feed BOSS free choice to my free range flock when I have it. My tractored birds only get a few cups a week except for my breeding Marans and they also get it free choice in their tractors. It is a nice high plant protein.

    If you are just giving it as a treat then you have to evaluate your birds' environment and see how much they may need, just like you do with the scratch. It also depends on the breeds you are feeding and at what age they are.
    My 4 year old laying hens can't handle it as well as my year old laying hens. Sorta like me and brownies. Too much of a good thing for my age but not when I was 16.[​IMG]
     

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