Nutritional treats for your chickens!

Most of us have read many a book on how to feed our chickens, right? Even with all the references we are still unsure as to what we are doing sometimes. Through trial and error, we figure out what is best for our chickens most of the time. Some of the time we get lucky to have an “old timer” to mentor us with their own wisdom. I’ve found myself that chickens aren’t too complicated really. I often pull up a chair and sit and watch behaviors as I throw scraps out paying attention to what they like and what they dislike. The things they eat first and the foods they eat last. Besides the general pelleted or crumbled ration, you can supply healthy treats for your adult fowl or growing chicks. Just keep in mind to do this in moderation so that they don’t consume more of the treats than they will of the general ration.

Some treats are even beneficial in preventative medicine. For instance, pumpkin seeds, and carrots are not only nutritional, but a natural way of preventing worms. The pumpkin seeds have a natural coating on them that relax the scolex of the worm, and the carrots being high in beta carotene, will also help them pass. Yogurt is another beneficial treat. It is full of natural enzymes and live cultures, which is good for the proper digestion. Feed it to your chicks with their crumbles, and it will help them develop the natural flora they need to develop a healthy immune system. Feed fresh leafy green vegetables, or cranberries, as these are high in Vitamin C, and a plus for the immune system, especially if you are having to medicate your birds, as it will help with the absorption of the medication. Mangel beets are a good old fashion treat too. Just stick them on a large nail in the coop and it will keep the chickens busy for hours, sometimes days. Treats like Minnows, Black Oil Sunflower Seeds, or any meat scraps, are high in vitamins A and D and a great source of protein, and amino acids, which can be very beneficial when chickens are going through a hard molt. So understanding treats in a nutritional sense can be just common sense, just don’t forget the water!



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