We had to take a week long trip to my MIL to pick some stuff up so we hired the local neighbor kid to come tend the chickens, he is great with them and has always been reliable... Luckily no incidences with predators, he must have remembered to close them up each night, but they ran out of layer pellets. So he :::gulp::: filled the feeder with the oyster shell! I guess he thought it was chicken food. He then realized that they weren't eating it, they were just billing it out onto the floor. (Luckily they have an acre of orchard on which to free range) So, in the end he improvised had a friend pick up a bag of chicken feed at the store to fill the hopper (which normally holds 2 50# bags of food, I didn't realize how low the food had gotten before we left). He called me to tell me what happened, I was 800 miles away, couldn't do much but reassure him. I came home and went to treat the chickens and they weren't interested in it at all! I wondered what the deal was so I checked the feeder, it was full of scratch! No wonder they didn't want anything else! they had stuffed themselves on the "good stuff!" Needless to say I went got a couple bags of the regular layer pellets they normally eat, scooped out the scratch and put them back on normal feed. They sulked for a day or so but :::shrugs::: oh well. Lessons learned: 1. Always have an extra bag of food on hand 2. Label in dark magic marker "Food" and "Treats" and "NOT Food" any bags of miscellaneous stuff in the food shed.