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Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Swamp Roo, Apr 30, 2008.
I was wondering when do folks fist introduce their youngin's to scratch feed?
I only do it in the winter when it's chilly out and they need the extra heat.
Thanks, I want to use SG to train my chickens to "come and get it" as it were. I'd rather have them come back into the coop when I want rather than have to "chase" them back in. Might be nice to be able to leave the house an hour or two before sunset and have the chickens already locked up for the night. Plus, I am considering the deep litter method and that way I can have them do some work for me. Just trying to figure out when I can start with that. My oldest are 5-6 weeks old now.
I use the scratch feed to attract them back into the coop as well. I usually only take a few handfuls out, just so they get they idea to come in.
I have recently switched from Dumor crumble to pellets and they seem to love them. Any thoughts on this?
I too only use scratch in the winter but it definately will train them to where you want them to go. They just go nuts for it.
Quote:We've changed from the Dumor crumbles to the pellets, too. They wasted alot more feed when we were feeding the crumbles. With the pellets, they don't seem to be wasting them at all.
It's best not to feed any scratch until the flock is at least 10 weeks old in my opinion. Then it should be kept at a minimum treat til they are more developed.
If you don't free range, then grit will also need to be available for the flock to digest the whole grains.
Thanks everyone! I'll wait with the scratch grain for a while yet. Plan on using it as an incentive to stir up the bedding in the coop a couple times a week as well. I expect if the chickens just find a couple of grains every once in a while, they'll keep "looking" for them untill every last bit of bedding has been poked at (at which time I'll let them find a few more to start them up again). Bigzio, I put dirt road grit (Florida shell/rock/sand) in with my chicks just about from the start. The heat lamp will attract all sorts of bugs even in the house or screened in coop here in Florida year round. Two/three day old chicks will do back flips trying to get them. Figured if they are eating bugs, they might need the grit, and it shouldn't hurt them.