Please do not count on chickens knowing what is bad for them. We will start off with a list of Things to Never feed your hens:
Earthworms- Chickens may find and eat them themselves, however eating earthworms may cause Gapeworm, so please do not dig them up and feed them to your chickens!
Citrus Fruit- Chickens may not be given any type of citrus.
Candy, Chocolate, Anything Salty or Sugar- These are bad for their digestive systems and can even kill them
Do not feed your chickens anything moldy.
Chickens need a lot of protein and calcium to lay eggs, and the food we supply ensures they get all of that. Given this, it is still fun to watch them eat treats, so please feel free to give them some, but only in moderation! Chickens have different likes and dislikes, so they might not eat everything, however all of the items listed below are worth a try. The chart below indicates that starch may be given to them in moderation, but we recommend not giving them any type of breads or starch.
Cabbage & Brussels Sprouts
Only feed your chickens that which is still considered edible by humans- no spoiled, moldy, oily, salty etc food!
Seedless only! For chicks, cut them in half- it makes it easier for them to swallow.
Bulgar, Flax, Niger, Wheatberries, etc.
Pears, Peaches, Cherries! Anything that is not citrus!
Make sure they have not been treated with pesticides, such as florist flowers might be.
These can be bought at pet supply stores
On the cob, canned, raw or cooked
Cheerios, Corn Flakes, etc.
All kinds- good use for stale bread rolls
Any and every kind- Blueberries, Strawberries, Blackberries, Boysenberry, etc!
Well cooked only- Never Dry
Apple seeds contain cyanide but not in sufficient quantities to harm
A favorite treat but not much nutrition. It's fun to watch them eat it.
Cooked is nutritionally better. Great treat on a cold winter day!
Both seeds and flesh make great treats
In moderation- a good source of protein
One of their favorite treats and a great source of protein
A big treat depending on how much other greens they have access to
Let the cucumbers mature for yummy seeds and flesh
Great treat! Provides protein and its fun to watch the chickens catch them
Feed in moderation- this is fatty, but a good source of protein and calcium
Avoid highly sugared cereals!
They also enjoy the greens
Hang a whole cabbage from their coop ceiling in the winter, so they have greens and entertainment.
You can tuck this into a suet feeder and they will peck at it all day!
This should only be given on rare occasions as food starches need to be kept in moderation.
Chickens love all types of berries- A cause of many entertaining chicken keep-away games!
High in potassium. A great treat
Okay to feed, but not a favorite
Any leafy greens, spinach collards, chickweed included
Served Cold- can keep chickens cool and hydrated during hot summer days!
With or without shell is fine
Wheat and Oat Sprouts are great
Chicken Scratch is cracked corn with grains such as wheat, oats and rye mixed in.
Cooked only. Avoid the green parts of peels! Can also eat yams.
Popped Popcorn without butter or salt
Peas and Pea Tendrils and Flowers
Starchy- not much nutrition
Both seeds and flesh are a nutritious treat.
Pilaf mixes are okay too. Plain white rice has little nutrition.
Treat during cold weather, not a complete meal! Toss on ground to give them something to do.
Good for greens in mid-winter.
Yellow Squash not a huge favorite but okay to feed.
A good treat that helps hens lay eggs and grow healthy feathers.
Seeds and Flesh are both okay to feed
A big favorite and good for their digestive systems- Plain is much better!
Available at pet supply stores or on the internet