can i feed my chickens bird seed

Chickens will usually eat just about anything, and yes, they enjoy eating bird food. However, bird food should only be given as an occasional treat and not as part of a chickens daily feed because bird food is typically low in vitamins and calcium and too high in calories to meet the nutritional needs of laying chickens.

Modern domestic chickens lay a lot of eggs all year round, whilst wild birds only lay eggs a few times a year, so bird food designed for wild birds will not make a well-balanced diet for poultry.

Your chickens will thrive on vegetables and fresh fruit, such as spinach, cabbage and vegetable peels. It makes good sense to avoid giving them any mouldy or spoiled food.

As chickens dont have teeth, a supply of Haiths Fine Oystershell Grit is essential as it helps to break down their food. Chickens may get this grit naturally from the ground where they live, but it is best to provide them with a healthy and regular supply of grit at source.

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Generally speaking, chickens will eat almost anything, and they do indeed like eating bird food. However, because bird food is usually too high in calories and low in vitamins and calcium to meet the nutritional needs of laying chickens, it should only be given as an occasional treat and not as part of a chicken’s daily diet.

Since wild birds only lay eggs occasionally throughout the year, and modern domestic chickens lay a lot of eggs all year round, bird food intended for wild birds does not provide a well-balanced diet for poultry.

Vegetables and fresh fruit, like spinach, cabbage, and vegetable peels, will nourish your hens and make them flourish. It makes sense to refrain from providing them with any spoiled or moldy food.

Since chickens lack teeth, having a supply of Haiths Fine Oystershell Grit on hand is crucial for aiding in the digestion of their food. Although the ground where chickens live may naturally contain this grit, it is preferable to give them a steady and wholesome supply of grit directly from the source.

Fine Oystershell Grit for Cage Birds

Chickens can be fed Haiths Poultry Corn every day. Malting barley, whole wheat, chopped maize, milo, buckwheat, and fine oystershell grit are all included in the mixture.

Grandad Teds Poultry Spice is an extra that can be added to diets as a dietary supplement. Just stir it into your regular meal a few times a week to help encourage vitality and rich golden yolks.

Scientifically designed poultry feed gives hens the nourishment they require for healthy growth and development at every stage of their lives. If you’re wondering if hens can eat wild bird food, the answer is yes. However, insufficient amounts of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients can cause poultry to undergrow, develop deficiencies, and in extreme cases, become incapable.

A 50-pound bag of chicken feed typically costs $17, depending on the manufacturer and the kind of feed—starter, grower, or layer rations, at least in Michigan). A 40-pound bag of black-oil sunflower seed, however, costs $27. Although it might not seem like much, that adds up. The cost of 200 pounds of poultry feed is $68, whereas the cost of 200 pounds of sunflower seeds is $135. The price of wild bird feed is double that of poultry feed.

Not too long ago, I told this story to an old friend. Although Karen doesn’t raise chickens, her deck is absolutely dazzling with the various hues, designs, and sizes of wild bird feeders. She grinned, picturing my Buff Orpington hens filling up at my tube feeder. She then asked me, “Well, why not?”.

For chickens to remain healthy, it is essential to feed them the proper diet. Our flocks cannot be fed scratch grains or any other supplement as their primary source of nutrition for the same reason.

I’ve looked out my kitchen window a few times in the last ten years, expecting to see nuthatches and chickadees at the wild-bird feeders hanging on my deck. Each time, however, I’ve found one of my hens perched precariously on the deck rail, happily gobbling up bird seed. Can chickens eat wild bird food? I was amused at first. But when I found out how much birdseed my Orpington oinkers cost me, the humor quickly subsided.


Can you feed wild bird seed to chickens?

In terms of feeding them only that food long term, I am not sure that it would be complete. They need greens as well, and will benefit from an addition of pellets , and fridge and pantry scraps . Wild bird seeds are fine to feed to chickens in moderation as occasional treats.

What seeds can chickens not eat?

Most fruits are safe to give to your flock and beneficial. But do not give them fruits with seeds like apples and pears and pits like cherries, plums, peaches, and apricots without first removing the seeds and pits. They contain small amounts of a cardiac-toxic cyanide compound and can be fatal.

Can I sprout bird seed for my chickens?

It’s as easy as that, and both your chickens and ducks will love them. Sprouted seeds and grains are actually more nutritious than either feeding them whole or grinding them into feed. Try a different kinds to see which are your flocks’ favorites.

Can chickens eat peanuts and sunflower seeds?

Yes, chickens love them, and will eat all they can get. But unfortunately for the chickens eating them, sunflower seeds are high in fat and a diet with too many sunflower seeds will lead to your chickens getting fatty livers which will make them sick and kill them from fatty liver disease.