The Extra Essentials

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by VolailleAmant, Dec 24, 2016.

  1. VolailleAmant

    VolailleAmant Songster

    Jul 26, 2016
    Good Morning, and Merry Christmas Eve!
    So, I have been reading my chicken-nut books ( :) ), and have felt sort of neglectful towards my chickens. Like, am I feeding them all I am supposed to?
    Maybe you could tell me if I need to add anything to their daily diet, here is my daily feed schedule: DuMor Layer crumbles and pellets, a small handful of scratch to keep them occupied with something, water (duh), and I sprinkle some oyster shells and grits in their feed. Is there anything else?
    Thank you![​IMG]

  2. Folly's place

    Folly's place Free Ranging

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    Oyster shell and grit should be in separate containers out there, so free choice rather than in the feed. If all your birds are hens in lay, sounds fine. If you have birds not actively laying eggs, an all-flock feed is better, with oyster shell on the side for the layers, so your non-laying birds aren't eating too much calcium. Mary
    1 person likes this.
  3. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Crowing

    Jul 3, 2016
    Pac NW
    My Coop
    Occasional treats other than scratch wouldn't hurt, though it's really optional. Greens like kale, broccoli, carrot tops are good especially if you want orangey yolks. Mealworms or other bits of insects or protein are appreciated by most birds. I don't buy scratch since my run litter has enough worms and grass to keep the chickens occupied, but if the weather is bad I've been hanging up a flock block for them to pick at. A hanging vegetable like squash or cabbage would do the same, just to keep them busy and give them something different to nibble on.
    1 person likes this.
  4. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    The others have given excellent advice. I'll just confirm that you can't go wrong feeding their nutritionally balanced feed, and I also recommend grower over layer since it has what a mixed flock needs, and you never have to worry about individual needs if you have a rooster or chicks and juveniles in the future.

    Mixing anything else in their feed is not a great idea because they pick out the good stuff and tend to waste the feed. Scratch should always be given sparingly as a treat after they've finished their feed for the day, just like kids and desert.

    I have a special container fastened to the wall with their oyster shell, and those that are laying will eat what they need, and the others ignore it.

    Grits is also a treat and should be given sparingly like scratch grain. Mine get rolled oats when they've finished their daily feed.

  5. VolailleAmant

    VolailleAmant Songster

    Jul 26, 2016
    Thank you everyone.....I do know now that scratch is like chicken candy.....Feed sparingly!

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