Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by hojo, May 17, 2009.

  1. hojo

    hojo In the Brooder

    May 16, 2009
    Okay new to this chicken stuff, but you all say you give them scratch, what exactly are you talking about as in "scratch"?? Is this a certain food you throw on the ground for them or what?

  2. nwgirl

    nwgirl Songster

    Mar 27, 2009
    Everett, Washington
    Scratch is a mixture of whole grains and cracked corn. Its like chicken candy and they love it, but since its low in protein and high in fat, its only good to provide as a treat. You can use a separate feed hopper or scatter it on the ground.
  3. hojo

    hojo In the Brooder

    May 16, 2009
    Thank you for answering the question for me, i know it may of seemed silly but I had to ask LOL I just didn't know what it was exactly [​IMG] thanks
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    The only silly question is the one not asked. I guarantee you there are a lot of people on this site that don't know what scratch is. We all learn things off here.

    Nwgirl is correct in treating it like chicken candy. Scratch is high in energy and too much is dangerous for a chicken, just like too much candy is dangerous for us humans. If they eat too much scratch, they can build up fat in an internal organ, the liver I think, and it can kill them. It doesn't happen every time but it does happen. The rule of thumb is to give them only what they can clean up in 10 to 20 minutes. Your goal is a balanced diet.

    Since it is high in energy, some people like to give scratch just before the chickens go to bed on cold nights. The thinking is that the scratch helps keep them warm at night. Another good use of scratch is to throw it on their litter. They will scratch through the litter looking for the scratch and stir it up so you don't have to. I wonder why it is called scratch?
  5. Skitz

    Skitz Skitz15k

    Nov 11, 2008
    Quote:Don't worry I had the same questions 4 years ago. I was talking to my neighboor and she told me to give them scratch! I told my friend that maybe she said Scrach without the "T" then I called my aunt (she gave me my first chickens) And told her what they ate and she told me the same thing "SCRATCH" I went to the feedstore and I told them to give me Scrach and they said they didn't had none and that they didn't know what was that. Another person came in and asked for scraTch and they gave him some so I went I told her that I thought that they didn't had none and she said we have scraTch but not scrach lol [​IMG] embarrasing moments

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