Provide laying hens good-quality feed, such as a high-quality commercial chicken feed designed specifically for laying hens, green vegetable matter, oyster shell grit to supplement calcium levels, and scratch grains. Hens allowed to forage for food eat a diverse array of plants and insects. This practice contributes to a healthy diet.
Egg production takes a heavy toll on a hen, so feeding a healthy, nutrient-rich diet is imperative. Begin with a high-quality commercial chicken feed designed for the nutritional needs of laying hens. The feed is available in pellets or crumbles. Offer the food free-choice, or as much as the hens wish to eat, throughout the entire day. Also offer oyster shell grit at all times as a calcium supplement.
Hens who forage in a pasture eat a wide variety of plant and animal matter. Provide hens without the opportunity to forage chopped green vegetables, such as lettuce and spinach, and chopped fruit, berries, nuts and seeds. Bread or other table scraps such be fed in very limited quantities. Scratch grains are also a limited part of a healthy diet for laying hens.
In addition to increased nutrient requirements, a laying hen also has a greater need for water. Provide laying hens with unlimited access to fresh water at all times.