To much scratch?

U_Stormcrow

Crowing
Jun 7, 2020
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North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
Laying... not lame! Sorry!

Its always OK to swap over to All Flock, assuming you have free choice oyster shell available for those still laying. We get dark about the same time here, and my egg production has dropped substantially, but not stopped.

Many recommend mixing the two foods as you introduce, so the flock doesn't turn its beak up at the sudden change. I've not had that experience, but its such a simple thing, I see no reason not to do it. Buy the all flock when next you are out, add a little to your layer. as you finish out your layer bag, keep adding more all flock till they've completely transitioned.

I will say that All Flock is slightly more expensive, if that's a serious consideration for you - circumstances differ - but the higher protein content is of benefit in adding weight to your meat birds (which you don't have), the lower calcium is better for your roosters (which you don't have), hatchlings (again, you don't have), and is generally believed to make for faster, less stressful molts when your layers start replacing their coats.
 

britinpa

Songster
Jun 22, 2020
227
305
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Central Pennsylvania
Layer feed is for egg-laying so you can switch that to something else when they stop laying for the winter. The extra calcium is not being expelled from the body through eggshells. This can cause liver problems. I do not know what to switch it into though.
Is it necessary to stop the layer feed in the winter, as most of my 8 pullets are laying at the moment. Do I really need to switch them to all flock with oyster shells?
 

cmom

Hilltop Farm
13 Years
Nov 18, 2007
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Florida
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You don't have to, but the All Flock/Flock Raiser is good too. My birds pretty much finished molting recently, there may be a few birds still getting some feathers back in and the higher protein helps since their feathers are primarily made of protein. Mine are laying pretty well. I still put oyster shells and grit in my feeders and they take what they want. It's easier to do it that way for me but I have a lot of birds and a lot of feeders. I do give them some grains and seeds as treats. I have a small bucket and each pen gets probably a couple of cups of scratch. They are just treats. All of the coops have night lights. They are 1 watt LED's, not very bright.
 

Sherri1990

Songster
Jun 4, 2020
285
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I personally don't feed scratch :idunno. I give a handful of mealworms instead.

Make sure that they are eating more layer food than scratch.
I measure it out. Tonight I only gave them black oil sunflower seeds and fly larva. I don’t give more then a cup of any treat for 13 hens. I hike that’s ok? I’m a new chicken mama.
 

DogAndCat36

Crowing
Mar 12, 2020
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Northern Maine
Is it necessary to stop the layer feed in the winter, as most of my 8 pullets are laying at the moment. Do I really need to switch them to all flock with oyster shells?
You only need to switch to oyster shells and all flock if you have a rooster. Right now since your hens are still laying you can feed them layer feed. When they stop laying for about 1 week slowly switch to all flock until they get more sunlight during the end of winter. How long are your winters where you live?
 

Sherri1990

Songster
Jun 4, 2020
285
336
118
You only need to switch to oyster shells and all flock if you have a rooster. Right now since your hens are still laying you can feed them layer feed. When they stop laying for about 1 week slowly switch to all flock until they get more sunlight during the end of winter. How long are your winters where you live?
We get cold from November to March.
 

britinpa

Songster
Jun 22, 2020
227
305
141
Central Pennsylvania
You only need to switch to oyster shells and all flock if you have a rooster. Right now since your hens are still laying you can feed them layer feed. When they stop laying for about 1 week slowly switch to all flock until they get more sunlight during the end of winter. How long are your winters where you live?
Thank you! I'm in central PA, so we probably get about an extra hour of day light during the winter months than you
 

rosemarythyme

Scarborough Fair
Premium Feather Member
Jul 3, 2016
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Is it necessary to stop the layer feed in the winter, as most of my 8 pullets are laying at the moment. Do I really need to switch them to all flock with oyster shells?

Either way is fine - since yours are laying there's really no reason not to use the layer if you prefer that feed. I choose to feed both layer and grower year round, as long as I don't have chicks (when I do, I feed everyone what the chicks are eating).
 

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