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pellets vs scratch

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by bgeyer, Sep 15, 2012.

  1. bgeyer

    bgeyer Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 13, 2012
    My local feed store sells pellets, and scratch. I read that you shouldn't given them scratch because it is like eating candy. Is that true? Should I be feeding them pellets? Are their any other choices or a better feed to given them? I have a Rhode Island Red and Silkies.
     
  2. DanEP

    DanEP Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2010
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    Scratch is more of a treat than a basic food, they will survive on treat but will do much better on regular food. As far as other options it depends on how old your chickens are. you can start them on chick starter while their first hatched and then switch them to grower or some brands call it raiser when the starter runs out.These foods are about 20% protein and help the chicks grow. when they get to be 18 - 20 weeks old you can switch them to a layer feed which is about 16% protein but has extra calcium for the egg shells in it.
    As far as food types most feeds come as crumbles or pellets and is the same food just in a different form. Pellets can be a little hard for small chicks to deal with so I usually start with crumbles till they get a little bigger then start mixing the 2 together till they get used to the pellets then gradually switch to the pellets but they will do fine on either feed and is just a matter of your preference.
    I feed scratch every day but in small amounts and use it to train the girls to go back into the run.Once their hooked on scratch which won't take long just feed it to them in the run only and when they hear come on girls or whatever you want to say they will run right back into the run for their scratch making it easier to lock them up.
     
  3. bgeyer

    bgeyer Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 13, 2012
    When I bought the scratch at the feed store he sais it ws the most natural option. I guess he was wrong.
     
  4. MarineCorpFarmr

    MarineCorpFarmr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2012
    AL/TN Stateline
    My Coop
    Ask 50 people how they feed their flock, you'll get 50 different answers. Read the OT's thread lots of good info there, and many good points made. 50 years ago most people just fed chickens cracked corn, and surprise they thrived. I feed out approx 10 lbs of scratch a day mainly to the ducks that are currently sharing the chicken run, but i have a fresh ground custom blend in the 30lb feeder all the time and layer crumble in the other feeder. the custom blend I get is ground fresh and locally by family friends at their feed store.
     
  5. cchardwick

    cchardwick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 21, 2009
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    My Coop
    I use a big metal trash can and mix 50 pounds of crumbles with 100 pounds of scratch, layering it as I go to mix it well. I found that if I go to only scratch my chickens will reduce or stop laying eggs! I accidently got a bag of pellets last month and my Rhode Island Reds won't touch the stuff. I have to mix it in really thin to get rid of it, I'll never get pellets again.
     

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