Started feeding scratch, have questions.

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by momofchicks, Nov 28, 2008.

  1. momofchicks

    momofchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2008
    Kentucky
    I mixed some scratch and grit with my regular layer crumbles and it seems that the chickens are picking out the scratch only, and making a mess of the layer crumbles all over the ground. Also their poo is really green now, is that from the corn? [​IMG]
    Thanks
     
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    You just described why it's best to feed the scratch seperate from their regular feed. They will bill out the layer feed to get to the scratch; wasting feed and making a mess in the process.
    Just throw scratch out on the ground and let them "scratch" for it. It not only provides them with a different feed for variety, but gives them something to do.
    I've also noted greenish poo since starting the scratch this winter, so assume that it's normal and from the corn.
     
  3. LilRalphieRoosmama

    LilRalphieRoosmama Officially Quacked

    Oct 15, 2007
    Elyria, OH
    Scratch is like "chicken candy". I feed it to mine but only in the winter. They KNOW when it's time - and I swear the recognize the word. Definitely feed it separate - I just toss it in their coop - that's why it's called "scratch".
     
  4. sunnydee

    sunnydee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 17, 2008
    Maine
    I do the same...I toss it in their run around an hour before the sun sets. Gives them something to do and fills their bellies up for night night time.
     
  5. hatchaholic

    hatchaholic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 23, 2008
    South Carolina
    Quote:You're right, they definately know when it's time. My chicks, turkeys, and geese have become almost obnoxious about the scratch. If you don't give it to them the time you go into the barn, they surround you, making all kinds of noises, until you get it.
     
  6. Momma_Cluck

    Momma_Cluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 11, 2008
    N. West Michigan
    a question--- what is the difference in "scratch" and "Mash"??
    Our one co-op's "Mash" looks like the consistency of cornmeal... and the other is good sized pieses..and has a good deal of crushed corn in it.... when I buy THAT they go thru 2-3x MORE feed than with the "powdered" one--- but it makes much less of a mess!
     
  7. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Our local farmer's co-op sells three things that fall under the category of "scratch" on their pricing list:

    Scratch grains - have pieces of cracked corn with three other types of grain and a seed that I've seen in wild birdseed.

    "Scratch" - is the cornmeal consistency, basically just ground corn.

    "Chops" - is dry cracked corn pieces, without the other grains.


    We've been experimenting with which one works best for us and enjoyed the most by the chickens.

    With the scratch grains my chickens ignore the red seed part, so some was wasted.

    Chops they gobble up quickly, almost too quickly; but it gives them something to do scratching around for it.

    I like the scratch (mash) as a wintertime treat because I mix it with very warm water in the evenings, to make a mash and feed it in a trough. It gives them a nice warm crop full before bedtime.
     
  8. LilRalphieRoosmama

    LilRalphieRoosmama Officially Quacked

    Oct 15, 2007
    Elyria, OH
    I didn't know there were so many options! We only have scratch grains here. Then again, I can't find gamebird feed either...
     

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