converting website visitors Feeding scraps to chickens - The Poultry Site Forum

ThePoultrySite.com - news, features, articles and disease information for the poultry industry

Feeding scraps to chickens

distillery Senior Member
Can anyone give me some guidance on feeding scraps to chickens? I've been searching around and seem to get conflicting information. The Omlet website (http://www.omlet.co.uk/homepage/homepage.php) says NEVER to give them meat, but I've seen advice on here suggesting giving them cat food, but not chicken flavour.

I've even tried emailing DEFRA for help, but they didn't respond!

I heard chickens love baked beans, and have discoverd it to be true, but I've no idea if it's bad for them! They've also gobbled down bread, unsweetened popcorn and leftover potato rosti, but they weren't keen on corn on the cob. I feed them layers pellets (although they keep pinching the ducks' breeders pellets), and they are completely free-range over an acre during the day, then they get a handful of mixed corn about 6pm.

Most of my uncooked waste is composted, but I'd love to 'recycle' the rest and make my girls happy at the same time, but I'd like to make sure it's good for them.

Also - how soon can I start giving chicks scraps?

Thanks!

Comments

  • Sandy Senior Member
    edited July 2007
    distillery said:
    Can anyone give me some guidance on feeding scraps to chickens? I've been searching around and seem to get conflicting information. The Omlet website (http://www.omlet.co.uk/homepage/homepage.php) says NEVER to give them meat, but I've seen advice on here suggesting giving them cat food, but not chicken flavour.
    All chickens love protein, most of the egg is protein
    uncooked meat products.. definately don't give to them

    They need protein in their diet to keep them healthy, or they lack it and tend to try to find it from other sources.. like each other, feather picking, vent picking etc

    Plants / Good for Chickens

    Have a read of this link... it may help you

    Putting out any scraps from the table is risky, food poisoning not only happens to humans it happens even more so to poultry.. people think they can just throw out the food and doesn't matter if it goes mouldy or bad its still ok for the chickens... wrong... they die from food poisoning quickly

    Never give tea bags, green potato skins, toffee, chewing gum, rotting meat or vegetables

    Never allow the birds to get into the compost heap, if maggots are in there, yes they may be a good source of protein but they may have also been eating rotting meat or vegetable products.. and if the hens eat the maggots they are once again given food poisoning

    Never give too much bread.. and if you do give things like bread soak it in water or milk first... otherwise they eat it (and they love it) and it soaks up all the fluids in the crop, and can cause crop impaction

    Clean up the yard and any spillage of grains and old feed, if the bird peck around an area that old grain has gone off.. they can become very sick or even die

    Its mainly common sense

    Like in summer... they love watermelon.. but only put out small amounts... why... because it is 90% water.. they love it .. they eat too much.. they over fill their crops and the fluid overflows into their lungs.. and they die

    Small amounts of most things are ok

    Onions.. don't feed
    Things like cabbage, cauli, brussel sprouts, broccoli etc.. only give once a week

    Lettuce leaves can cause diarrhea in some breeds.. other breeds seem to tolerate it, but most chickens do get some form of diarrhea with eating it


    I've even tried emailing DEFRA for help, but they didn't respond!
    They are only interested in the big business people not back yard poultry owners

    I heard chickens love baked beans, and have discoverd it to be true, but I've no idea if it's bad for them! They've also gobbled down bread, unsweetened popcorn and leftover potato rosti, but they weren't keen on corn on the cob. I feed them layers pellets (although they keep pinching the ducks' breeders pellets), and they are completely free-range over an acre during the day, then they get a handful of mixed corn about 6pm.
    You really have to look at the nutritional side things when feeding chickens, corn and maize has absolutly no nourisment at all for them, it only puts on weight, but they love it .. so given as a treat once ina while is great

    Any foods if they have sugar in them... DON'T GIVE THEM>. this inhibits the food digestion process of the crop in chickens

    Don't feed pop corn... popped or unpopped unless you want birds with impacted crops

    they can't digest it and it has absolutely no nutritional value what so ever for them

    Don't feed cut grass if its longer than 2 inches, it will or can cause crop impaction, when birds pick their own grass they nip off the tops they never usually eat long stands

    The ducks breeder pellets probably have more protein in them, and this is what they are looking for

    Most of my uncooked waste is composted, but I'd love to 'recycle' the rest and make my girls happy at the same time, but I'd like to make sure it's good for them.
    Pick out all the foods you can feed to them.. put them through your food processor.. mix them into your layer feed and add some milk to it.. or add hot water.. make it into a hot mash for them.... then put it into a dish.. this way they get the best of both worlds and not as much wastage..and anything that spills they tend to kick around and it doesn't sit and go bad

    That way they get the goodies.. you get to better use and recycle

    Also - how soon can I start giving chicks scraps?

    Thanks!
    12 weeks, but it should be stated they are much better of being fed a balanced diet for up to 15 weeks old... if you make up a mash using the food processor for the scraps and mixing their current diet with some hot water to make a wet mash at 12 weeks ... they should enjoy it

    Wet mash..... should never be sloppy... it should crumbly .. the birds must still be able to peck and pick up the food in their beaks..

    Food Scraps / Poisoning > Salt

    Plants / Poisonous for Chickens


  • Sandy Senior Member
    edited July 2007
    Web sites to find out more about your plants

    Herb guide – good for what ails you
    http://www.all-natural.com/herbguid.html

    Toxic plant list
    http://www.library.uiuc.edu/vex/toxic/comlist.htm

    Plants list
    http://www.ansci.cornell.edu/plants/comlist.html
  • distillery Senior Member
    edited July 2007
    Thanks Sandy. That's brilliant - just what I needed.

    Hilary
  • pierceofamboy Junior Member
    edited May 2009
    Wow Sandy--I was just passing threw--I too feed my girls scraps---and I just learned alot of stuff--that I won't be doing--For us that is new to this hen rearing--we need all this great info---

Our Sponsors

Partners


Seasonal Picks

Farm-O-San