Plenty of people domestically keep chicken coops at their homes or farmhouses. Feeding your chickens a good diet is one of the best ways to harvest quality eggs at home. While chickens are foragers and eat several foods, fruits are known to be great for them. Chicken owners often wonder whether or not chickens can eat peaches. Let’s find out.
So, can chickens eat peaches? Yes, absolutely! Besides being delicious, peaches are also great sources of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and are packed with several other nutritious elements that are beneficial for chickens. Peaches’ soft and hydrating nature allows chickens to gobble them up in seconds! However, you must always remove pits while feeding them to chickens.
Nutritional benefits of peaches – All you need to know
Loaded with pulpy goodness, peaches are amazing summer fruits. A medium-sized peach gives 50 calories, half a gram of healthy fats, carbohydrates (15 grams), fiber (2 grams), sugar (13 grams), protein (1 gram), and no cholesterol or sodium. Sounds amazing, doesn’t it?
Peaches are part of the stone family. They have one big seed instead of several small ones. Besides being healthy for humans, they are beneficial for chickens too! They contain balanced amounts of vital nutrients that make them healthy and allow them to lay healthy eggs.
Here are the key nutrients in peaches.
Vitamin C is beneficial for chickens since it helps produce collagen. It also aids the body in fighting a number of diseases by building immunity.
Collagens are extremely helpful in improving skin health as well as for accelerating the recovery from injuries and wounds.
Potassium is important for a chicken’s internal cell function. It decreases the risk of many diseases and health problems like high blood pressure, stroke, and kidney stones.
Fiber helps keep a chicken’s weight in control. It also promotes colon health. Besides, it protects chickens from severe health problems like diabetes, cancer, and obesity as well.
Carbohydrates obtained from peaches help keep a chicken active and help improve their overall health and wellness.
Their natural sugar content makes peaches sweet. Besides, they act as a natural taste enhancer. They are also healthy substitutes for sweet treats or processed food.
Peaches have good water content, which helps in keeping chickens hydrated.
Are there other benefits of feeding chickens peaches?
In addition to the array of health benefits, you must also know the correct way of feeding this tasty fruit. Let’s explore some other benefits of adding peaches to your chicken’s meal before discussing the best way to add it in your chickens’ feed.
Encourages physical stimulation
Chickens are hyperactive and curious creatures. You will always see a chicken pecking on something or the other. Furthermore, chickens are not domestic animals by origin.
They are not accustomed to living in confinement. Even though domesticated chickens adjust easily, they need to be kept occupied and physically fit.
Peaches are great treats for chickens and can be used as a tool for physical activity. Chickens kept in domestic environments tend to get stressed or plain bored. This takes a toll on their health and can make them aggressive and obese. This will also affect the quality of the eggs they lay.
You can use peaches to bring out their foraging instincts. You can keep slices or cubes of peaches hidden under some hay for them to discover. This will keep them entertained, active, as well as super-healthy.
Prevents scavenging for unsafe foods
Chickens are natural foragers and omnivorous by nature. Thus, you need to keep an eye on what they are eating while on their own. Peaches are a great way to distract chickens from unsafe foods.
For instance, nothing will stop a chicken from feeding on small rats or poisonous insects when they are hungry. You can prevent this by giving them tastier and healthier food like peaches.
How to feed your chickens peaches?
Peaches are great for chickens and can act as delicious treats too! They are packed with nutrients and help keep your chickens healthy. However, precautions are a must when feeding pit-fruits to your chickens. Here’s what you can do to feed your chickens peaches safely.
Wash peaches before feeding your chicken
Chickens tend to be restless when it comes to treats. You must not give in to their tense and pressing demands. Always wash peaches before you feed them to your chicken. This is a must before you slice or chop it to tiny bits.
Fruits have wax and other contaminants on their surfaces when kept in grocery stores. These can be harmful if consumed by your chicken. Thus, you should always soak or rinse peaches with lukewarm water to avoid any health risks.
Do not overfeed your chickens
Chickens have tiny appetites, given their small body structure. This is why you should never feed your chicken more than they can digest. Peaches may be a portion of ultimate health food but can harm your chicken if overfed.
It is ideal to restrict treats to twice a day to maintain your chicken’s health. Moreover, overfeeding can lead to obesity, diabetes, and an upset stomach.
Slice peaches before feeding chickens
The ideal way to feed your chickens peaches is to cut them into thin, small cubes or slices. Peaches are already soft, and cutting them into cubes will make it easier to eat and digest. However, be mindful of the cubes’ size since chickens are fast-eaters.
Other fruits, such as berries, also appeal to chickens due to their convenient size and interesting taste. You can consider them for your chickens if you want more variety in the feed you provide.
Nonetheless, you must be careful of the berries you feed chickens since some wild species can be poisonous.
Try to feed fresh peaches
Peaches taste the best when fed raw. Sometimes, you may lay peaches as a treat under a pile of hay and forget about it. Stale peaches taste horrible and contain harmful toxins that your chickens should not consume.
Thus, you should be careful of feeding chickens only fresh peaches.
Are there any risks of feeding chickens peaches?
Risks are natural when it comes to fruits, or any other food, whether raw or cooked. That said, it is always good to be aware of risks associated with certain foods to avoid health issues. Peaches are amazing for your chickens, but you must be mindful of the following risks.
No Canned Peaches
Canned peaches have artificial sweeteners and sugar for increasing shelf life and enhancing taste. Thus, it is strictly advised against feeding your chickens processed and canned peaches since it makes them sick.
Chickens have tiny, long beaks. They cannot eat large chunks or pieces of fruit. If they accidentally consume a large bite, they can choke. This may even be fatal.
As we have mentioned before, overeating can lead to obesity and several other health problems. Thus, it is important to control the amount of food you give your chickens. Peaches may seem harmless, but overeating can lead to digestion and other issues.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is there a fun way to introduce peaches to my chickens?
Absolutely! You can hang peach cubes on a thin string and tie it on sturdy poles or sticks in their coop. This will make them jump and run around for their treat. Besides this, you can even hide peaches under hay to make your chickens work hard for the treat.
What else can I feed my chicken?
There are not many restrictions when it comes to chicken feed. You can add a variety of fruits, grains, vegetables, and pulses to your chicken’s regular diet.
What should I refrain from feeding my chicken?
Chickens require a balanced diet to produce healthy eggs. They are not very fussy when it comes to food. And peaches? They love them!
Since peaches are fit fruits, several people wonder if it may be safe for chickens. It is safe, provided you keep the pit away from your chickens’ feed.
Note: Pits contain amygdalin that further breaks down to cyanide, which is very dangerous. However, pits are extremely hard so there are rare chances of your chicken accidentally consuming them.
Moreover, you should remember to remove the seed at all times even though the risk of them eating it runs very low. So what are you waiting for? Slice and dice a peach and give your chicken a healthy treat!