There are a lot of treats that you can toss to chickens. But have you ever thought of buying some mealworms for chickens?
The poultry industry keeps changing. Years back, chickens were left to forage and look for their own foods.
However, when commercial chicken farming began, chickens started being raise on a large scale for egg, meat or both.
This has led to introduction of new types of feeds that are healthier than letting your hens depend on their own.
So, are mealworms good for chickens? In this article, I am going to take you through everything you need to know about chickens and mealworms.
What are mealworms?
Mealworms are a larva stage of a mealworm beetle. This invertebrates are long, segmented and have a hard yellow shell and some brown rings between the body segments.
They are very popular for being high in protein making them a good treat for chickens. These worms are a favorite snack for birds, reptiles, fish and can be dried and mixed with animal feeds.
Most fishermen prefer to use live mealworms as bait to catch fish. Live or dried mealworms are very tasty to chickens and they will do anything to get some.
Can chickens eat mealworms?
Yes! They are a favorite and the best snack for your chicken breeds. These worms are rich in protein, fats, and a host of other vitamins.
They can be fed fresh or dried depending on how you want. However, avoid rotten and moldy worms because they can lead to health issues.
Are too many mealworms for chickens good?
This is because they do not have all the nutrients that chickens need. In addition to that, mealworms are rich in fat which can make chickens obese or overweight.
When chickens gain too much weight, they are prone to joint and back problems. They cannot also run when chased by predators like possums.
Feed this chicken treat to your birds sparingly and in moderation. Never do away with their crumbles and pellets just because worms are in abundance.
Can chicks eat mealworms?
Chicks can eat mealworms out of curiosity if they get them. However, they should stick to their starter feeds until they are 6 weeks old.
Remember that mealworms do not have all the nutrients chicks need. They are good with broiler chickens because they are supposed to eat high-protein feeds to gain weight quickly.
The digestive systems of chicks are not well developed to digest treats. I prefer to let my Columbian Wyandotte chicks grow until they are six weeks old for them to eat mealworms.
These gourmet chicken treats are high in fat especially when fresh. Therefore, feeding them to your little critters can result in fat chicks which are not healthy.
Where do you get cheap mealworms for chickens?
In most online stores, mealworms are expensive and will require you to dig deeper in your pocket. However, you can make your own mealworm farm.
It is easy and cheap compared to buying them. In addition to that, some sold by various online companies may have been grown using chemicals to make them big.
What do mealworms eat?
Mealworms’ food comprises a wide range of things like damp grains, decaying bread, insects, animal waste, and other decomposing foods.
They also like to burrow under the ground looking for anything rotting. These worms are considered omnivorous and secondary pests.
How to start a mealworm farm
- Clear tote boxes
- Pieces of timber
- Wire mesh
- Mealworm beetles
What are the best mealworms for chickens?
There are many companies that produce mealworms for sale. Most of them sell these chicken treats dried because they can stay longer on the shelf.
Drying mealworms can be done by using a microwave, freezer, or solar. When dried, mealworms have a low-fat content and therefore very healthy for chickens to eat.
FLYGRUBS Superior to Dried Mealworms for Chickens (10lb & 1lb) NON-GMO
Item Form: Dry
Do you want some gourmet tasty treats for your chickens? These here are the best. They are Non-GMO and are raise in an organic environment making them very healthy for chickens to eat.
They are good to encourage a natural feeding behavior to your hens. Just hurl them directly on the ground and your birds will go nuts.
These treats are good for laying chickens. They are high in calcium which will make hens produce those tasty eggs with strong and healthy egg shells.
Fly grubs are also laden with fiber, lysine, phosphorus, and protein.
They are well packed with a resealable bag for easier handling. The worms are whole and not broken and they are freeze dried making them retain more nutrients in them.
Happy Hen Treats Mealworm Frenzy Pet Treat, 5 Pounds Each
Brand: Happy Hen Treats
Target Species: Birds
Item form: Dry
These natural whole-dried mealworms will make your chickens go crazy. They are tasty and sweet for your chickens making them one of the best treats.
Do not worry about handling live mealworms. Frenzy worms are dried and packed making them stay long while still good and fresh for chickens.
These protein rich mealworm feed are good for molting chickens. This will help them develop feathers faster to help them battle cold weather.
They are packed in a re-sealable bag for easy storage and handling.
Buffalo Tools DMW54PC 5LB Dried Mealworm 4 Piece
Brand: Buffalo Tools
Weight: 5 Pounds
Package Weight: 2.33 Kilograms
These dried mealworms will make your hens go crazy. They are protein rich making a good treat for molting chickens.
Are your chickens laying soft shelled eggs? Get these mealworms for them. They are rich in calcium which is very vital in egg shell formation.
They are dried and well packed. This gives them a long shelf life and the packaging makes it easier for you to handle.
Fluker`s Culinary Coop Chicken Treats- Dried worms 5Pounds
Taste: Soldier Worms
Target Species: Birds, reptiles, pets…
Breed Recommendation: All sizes
Do you want your friendliest chicken breeds to come running to you? These dried mealworms will definitely make them go nuts.
They are rich in protein and calcium which are very vital to their health. Protein will help in body building and make them feather quickly after molting. Calcium is essential in egg shell and bone formation.
This is the perfect snack for taming your chickens come home on time and roost. These tasty worms will always be on their mind and they will come hoping to get some.
Kaytee Mealworm Food Pouch
Target Species: Birds
Weight: 2 Pounds
Kaytee mealworms are an excellent source of protein, calcium and a host of other minerals to your molting chickens.
These worms come dried and well packed. This makes it easier to handle them compared to live worms which are delicate and perishable.
Feeding these mealworms to your chickens helps encourage a natural feeding behavior. Toss a handful on the beddings and your hens will happily scratch looking for any single worm.
They can be fed to birds mixed with other feeds to make a wholesome diet. These treats are good with guineas, pigeons and other poultry.
Can chickens eat live mealworms?
The real answer is yes! When they are tossed to them, live mealworms make a good and tasty snack to feed to chickens.
Most people do not have time to dry these worms and prefer to feed them live which is ok. When fresh, they are high in fats so it is good to feed in moderation.
When roaming and free ranging on their own, chickens will collect worms, insects, tasty grubs and even rodents and small reptiles.
They will eat them live and will not care whether something has to be dried or cooked before eating. Try them some live worms and you will see it yourself.
Getting some mealworms for chickens is a good way to treat your laying hens. They will help boost their calcium and protein levels making them lay those tasty fresh eggs for you.
Feeding mealworms to molting chickens is very good. They are protein rich and will help your bird’s feather up quickly.
Always remember that mealworms are treats. They should be fed in moderation because they do not have all the nutrients your chickens need in their bodies.
Do your chickens enjoy mealworms? Let us know.
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