Poultry Treats - Delicious Treats your Birds Will Love
Healthy Poultry Treats
If you keep chickens then it is always nice to give them a few treats, but as with all animals, some treats are healthier than others! If you want to spoil your hens a little then it pays to choose your treats wisely.
From the Packet
The easiest way to spoil your poultry is to provide them with proprietary poultry treats such as Hentastic Poultry Foraging Cake or Garvo Chicken Treats. These are formulated to be healthy for your birds whilst being delicious. However, you may also wish to provide your chickens with leftovers and scraps. So what are the wisest choices?
From Your Pantry
The that you provide in the form of food from your kitchen do not represent a balanced diet and so should not be offered in unlimited quantities. But there are several foods which are safe and healthy if provided in moderation. Chickens do have different tastes, though, and so your choices may meet with various levels of enthusiasm!
Fruity snacks are great for chickens and so the occasional fruit salad or treat of leftover fruit is a great idea. Chickens will eat apples and pears which are good for chickens. Berries are also healthy but should picked in the wild or washed thoroughly as the pesticides and fertilisers used on commercially cultivated berries are toxic to chickens.
Citrus fruits are not a good choice as the peel of these fruits contains limonene. In large quantities, limonene can be toxic and may block the nutrients required for egg shell development. Choose melon instead as this fruit is great for hydration.
Fruit also has the advantage that it can be free! You can pick a variety of berry fruits in the wild, notably blackberries which are everywhere, and windfall fruits are easy to come by too. Just speak to any friends and neighbours who have fruit trees and they will probably be glad to offload some fallen fruit.
Cabbage and cauliflower are both healthy choices but few chickens seem to relish these vegetables. You may have more luck with carrots and broccoli florets. Raw is best but leftovers are fine if these is all you have. Chickens also appreciate some fresh lettuce and this low calorie and nutritious treat is a good boredom breaker to scatter around. Chickens adore tomatoes which are actually a fruit but hey! Tomatoes are packed with healthy anti-oxidants but don’t let your chickens eat the plants because they are toxic.
Dandelions and Other Flowers
You may think of dandelions as weeds but chickens love them. You can pick them in the wild or allow them to grow in your chicken run. Poultry will enjoy the leaves and petals of young plants but may reject more mature dandelions as they are bitter in taste. Chickens adore flowers and so your patio planters could be under threat but make sure that your birds don’t have access to flowers that have been sprayed with insecticides.
So you have plenty of great options when it comes to treating your chickens!