Can Ducks Eat Apples?

There are a host of fruits that make good duck food. However, this does not mean that they are their main course. So, can ducks eat apples?

Ducks are not choosy and they will eat almost anything they get. These webbed birds prefer to eat most of their food mixed with water or look for food in water.

It is common to see Florida ducks diving under the water to reach for small fish, weeds, mussels, snails, slugs and other aquatic animals they get.

In this case, let’s talk about ducks and apples. This will help you know whether these fruits are good for ducks to eat or not.

Let’s indulge!

Can ducks eat apples?

Yes! Ducks can eat apples the same way they eat grapes and watermelon. Apples are packed with a host of nutrients that are beneficial for the health of your pet ducks.

Apples are good treats and they will help supplement their diet. Do not throw away those extra apples if you have those Cayuga ducks at home.

Can ducks eat apple seeds?

Some plants like potatoes have taught us that not all plant parts are good for our flock. Apples have the same lesson too.

Apple seeds are not good and should never be fed to ducks. They are laden with cyanide a toxic chemical which can cause death when ingested.

Cut open the apple fruit with a sharp knife to expose the core and remove the seeds. These seeds can cause death within 30-50 minutes when eaten.

They are poisonous just like cherry pits, seeds of peaches and avocado seeds are. I am sure you do not want to kill your ducks with toxic foods.

Are apple peels good for ducks to eat?

These peels are good for your ducks. Do not let them rot in your compost if your Welsh harlequin hens can eat them.

However, do not feed peels of store bought apples. These fruits are from foreign sources and you are not sure whether they are sprayed with chemicals.

Feeding ducks with foods laden with chemicals can lead to serious ill health or even death. If you are not sure, wash them thoroughly with clean water before feeding.

In addition to this, do not forget that those big and long peels can choke them to death. Chop them into small bite-sized pieces before feeding.

Can ducks eat apple flesh?

Apple flesh is the most edible part of the apple fruit. It is rich in some powerful nutrients which are good for the health of your Pekin ducks.

The flesh is moisture laden and it will help keep your birds well hydrated on a hot summer day. They also have a lot of fiber in them which will prevent constipation in ducks.

However, just because these birds can eat apples does not mean that you do away with the crumbles, pellets and other commercial food for them.

How many apples can ducks eat?

Ducks are not wise but you are. If you leave too many apples for them they will eat to their fill and this is not good for their health.

Apples are treats and should be fen in moderation. The general rule of thumb states that all treats should not exceed 10% of the total ducks diet.

Remember that apples are sugary thus, sweet. Feeding sweet food to your ducks will make them develop a taste for sugary foods.

This may pose a challenge because they may refuse to eat other foods that have no sugar. In addition to this, too much sugar will make them obese, overweight and unhealthy.

Heavy ducks are prone to diseases and are too heavy to flee from predators.

Feed apples to ducks once in a while and in moderation. 90% of their diet should consist of feeds and forage material because they love to eat weeds and grass a lot.

Can ducks have apples?

Yes! In small amounts, apples are good treats for ducks. They will help supplement their diets with some extra vitamins and minerals.

However, always keep in mind that apples are not their main course. Therefore, feed in moderation after they have eaten their crumbles and pellets.

How to feed apples to ducks

There are several methods that you can feed apples to ducks. Since these fruits are good when raw and well ripen, feeding is easy.


Simply wash and cut your apples into small pieces. Put this chopped fruit in clean duck feeders and serve to your birds.

This way, they can eat them well without the fear of getting choked. When chopped, apples can be mixed with other treats or feeds.

Chopping is very good because it will help you reach the core of the fruit and remove those poisonous seeds.

Remember that ducks do not have teeth and will swallow most of their foods whole. Because they cannot chew chopping makes it easy for them to swallow.


Frozen apples are good treats to keep your duck breeds cool on a hot summer day. Cut apples into halves and put them in your freezer.

This will not only keep them fresh but it will also make them cold for a hot day. You can also chop these fruits together with other treats like raisins, broccoli and cucumber.

Feeding several treats in one serving will make sure that your girls get several nutrients on one plate.


Pass a string though your apples and hang in the duck coop. Here the birds will peck at it slowly breaking boredom before dusk.

This is a good way to encourage the birds come back to their pen on time. With this method you can put several duck treats in a treat ball and hang it for them.

Hanging ensures that your ducks eat the fruits while still clean unlike when hurled on bedding.

What are the health benefits of feeding apples to ducks?

As I said earlier, apples are packed with a host of vitamins and minerals which are very good for the health of your ducks.

Study the table below to know what nutrients apples will give to your ducks.

Nutrient                                              Value

Energy                                                  52kcal

Water                                                   85.6g

Protein                                                 0.26g

Fat                                                          0.17g

Carbohydrate                                    13.8g

Fiber                                                      2.4g

Sugars                                                   10.4g

Vitamin C                                             4.6mg

Vitamin K                                             2.2ug

Manganese                                        0.035mg

Iron                                                        0.12mg

Potassium                                           107mg

Magnesium                                        5mg

Phosphorus                                        11mg

Sodium                                                 1mg

Zinc                                                        0.04mg

Folate                                                   3mcg


As you can see, apples are moisture rich. They will help keep your ducks well hydrated on a hot summer day.

Water also plays a key role in the digestion of food. It keeps all the metabolic processes running well as expected and also helps maintain cell turgidity.


Protein helps in body building. A protein rich diet will help your laying ducks lay those healthy eggs good for breakfast.

It also plays a key role in the development of feathers. Ensure your flock of ducks gets enough protein especially when molting.


Fiber plays a big role in blood sugar regulation. It also helps prevent constipation by making sure that bowels are emptied in a smooth manner.

Vitamin C

Although ducks can naturally synthesize Vitamin C, it is important to supplement is with nutritious fruit treats.

Vitamin C helps ducks and other poultry birds deal with environmental stress.

Can baby ducks eat apples?

Ducklings will eat apples if they get them but this is not the right food for these little critters. They require a rich starter feed that is rich in protein for the first 6 weeks of their lives.

Remember that their digestive systems are not well developed to digest fruits. When raising ducks, strictly observe what you feed them because they are very sensitive.

Apart from food, baby ducklings require plenty of clean drinking water. Make sure your duckling waterers are full of water round the clock.

During the cold months of winter, every drop will probably turn into ice leaving them at the risk of dehydration.

Get them a heated waterer and this will help to keep duck water from freezing in winter.

What other treats can ducks eat?

There are a variety of different treats that ducks can eat apart from apples. They include:


Most vegetables are very good for your ducks. They are low in sugar and high in calories making them some of the best foods these birds can eat.

However, do not feed those store bought vegetables to your ducks. They may contain pesticides and other chemicals which are very toxic when swallowed.

Good vegetables for ducks include:

  • Carrots
  • Cabbage
  • Chard
  • Beet roots
  • Pumpkin
  • Kale
  • Celery
  • Asparagus
  • Zucchini
  • Bell pepper


Nuts especially when whole are very tasty to ducks. They are rich in vitamins and minerals but require to be fed in moderation.

These nuts include:

  • Peanuts
  • Hazel nuts
  • Almonds
  • Pecans
  • Cashew nuts

Cereals and grains

Cereals and grains are the major raw material used to make duck feeds. They are rich in carbohydrates and fats making them good during the cold winter nights.

They include:

  • Whole corn
  • Cracked corn
  • Bird seed
  • Millets
  • Wheat
  • Scratch
  • Rice
  • Barley
  • Oats
  • Sorghum


Ducks are omnivores and they will eat seeds, weeds and small animals like fish, snakes and lizards. Cooked leftover meat is healthy and good for them to eat.

The meat you feed to these birds should be thoroughly cooked, have no salt, butter and any additives in it.

However, raw meat should never be fed to ducks even in small amounts. Feeding raw meat to them can lead to salmonella poisoning.


Dried or fresh mealworms are an excellent source of protein for ducks. You can either raise your own worms for ducks or buy them from the local store.


Eggs are good but should be cooked and scrambled. Even the egg shells are an excellent source of calcium especially for the laying ducks.

Feeding raw eggs to ducks will encourage egg eating which is not good.

Can ducks eat apples final thoughts

Ducks can eat apples as a treat but not as their main diet. These fruits should be fed in moderation and should never replace their main course.

Avoid those store bought apples and other fruits meant for ducks. They may contain toxic chemicals which can cause ill health or even death when ingested.

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