Chickens are not choosy eaters. Naturally, chickens ranging are omnivores. They eat plants, insects, grubs and grains they get. But, can chickens eat broccoli?
Most vegetables that we eat like celery chops and soft asparagus shoots are good for chickens. These foods are tasty treats for our chooks because they contain a host of vitamins and minerals that are vital for their health and well-being.
Apart from vegetables, chickens can eat meat. Yes cooked meat to be precise and chopped into small parts because it can choke them to death. But if they get small snakes and tiny vermin they eat them raw.
Let’s talk chickens and broccoli
Is broccoli good for chickens to eat?
Oh yes! Broccoli is good for chickens. It contains a host of vitamins and minerals that are very essential for the health of chickens. However, it should be served to them as a treat and should not replace or make you do away with their main course.
Feeding raw broccoli or cooked to these feathered pals is recommended in moderation. They should enjoy this tasty treat either once or twice a week.
However, chickens will eat different treats with seasons. Mostly, you will find yourself feeding broccoli to chickens when you have plenty in your garden.
If there is no broccoli, you will find yourself tossing available treats like popcorn kernels to them. Some treats are available year round.
How much broccoli should chickens eat?
Broccoli is a vegetable meant for humans and not chickens. However, we feed such foods to our chickens in order for them to get additional vitamins and minerals that may not be present in the pellets and crumbles they eat.
So, treats such as broccoli and cauliflower should be fed in moderation. Never replace recommended chicken diet with broccoli. Let them enjoy this treat in moderation.
Broccoli is rich in potassium, calcium, fibre and iron. This vegetable is low in carbohydrates and fats hence very healthy even for laying hens.
How should broccoli be fed to chickens?
This treat is best served to chickens chopped into bite size pieces. Chopping it makes it easy for chickens to swallow with much ease and prevents choking.
You can choose to cook your broccoli or to toss it directly as raw as it is. If you prefer it cooked, do not add any salt, butter or seasonings.
Human food contains too much salt for chickens. These amounts can destroy the chicken kidneys or lead to other health issues.
Steam, blanch or boil broccoli meant for chicken. Remember that their digestive systems cannot handle butter and oils. So, add none.
What other vegetables can chickens eat?
Apart from broccoli, chickens will eat kales, turnips, cabbage, radishes, beetroots, carrots, pumpkins, lettuce, chard, cooked spinach and green peas.
Chickens will also enjoy fruits like watermelon, berries, cherries, pear, plums and avocado. These birds will eat rice (cooked and raw), oats, millet, wheat, sorghum and cracked corn.
What not to feed your chickens
Even though chickens have so much they can eat, there are certain foods and plants that will be toxic if ingested and can cause health complications or even death.
Potato peels, and leaves are not good. Do not let chickens consume green tomatoes and the entire tomato plant. These two belong to the night shade family and have high levels of an alkaloid called solanine that can kill chickens.
There are people who argue that onions are not good for chickens to eat. I tend to disagree because I have seen chickens eat onion. However, too much onion can alter with the taste of the eggs because of their strong flavors.
All dairy products except cheese are not good for chickens. Even though cheese is good, it is a dairy product and should be fed in moderation as a treat. Too much of it can have consequences.
Chickens digestive system is not made to digest dairy foods. They can lead to severe diarrhea which can cause dehydration and death.
Raw beans, fruit pits of avocado, plums and peaches are not good for chickens. Also, seeds of grapes and apples contain cyanide a toxic chemical to chickens.
Wrap up Thoughts
It is good to know that chickens can eat broccoli. This is another addition on the many treats that you are not sure of if they are good for your birds.
Plenty of drinking water is good too. Not only is water good but it is very basic to chickens. Have multiple chicken waterers so that your birds will have access to clean drinking water always.
Well-fed chickens are happy, healthy and robust. They have good yields and will offer good quality meat and eggs.
Happy chicken rearing!
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