When it comes to bananas, most people will eat just the flesh, and the banana peels will get discarded. If you have backyard chickens, instead of throwing the peels away, you may wonder if you can feed them to your chickens.
So, can chickens eat banana peels? Chickens can eat banana peels. However, you’ll need to make sure it’s not exposed to dangerous elements like pesticides. Pesticides are toxic and can cause harm to your chickens. You can boil or wash banana peels to get rid of the pesticides.
Are Banana Peels Safe For Chickens?
Banana peels themselves are safe for chickens to eat.
However, what was used to grow the bananas could be unsafe for them. Most bananas sold at the grocery stores are grown with pesticides sprayed on them. The pesticides are toxic to the chickens, even death can occur.
The banana peels are the part of the banana where it has the highest concentration of pesticides and other chemicals. For that reason, you will need to be very careful when feeding them any.
After buying the banana, if you’re planning to feed them the peels too, wash them thoroughly to remove any pesticides and other chemicals that may be on them.
Another option which I highly recommend is to boil the banana peels first. This will not only remove the chemicals from the peels, but it will make them softer for your chickens to eat.
Is It Healthy For Chickens To Eat Banana Peels?
Banana peels have a lot of nutrition. The peels are a good source of fiber, magnesium, potassium, protein, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12. This makes them healthy for your chickens to eat.
Below are some health benefits of feeding banana peels to your chickens:
Banana peels are a good source of fiber. Fiber is important to the overall health of the digestive system of chickens. Fiber helps bulk up the stool, which will make it easier for the food to pass through the digestive tracts.
Maintain Healthy Metabolism and Immune System
Banana peels have an abundance of vitamin B6 and B12. Both of these vitamins are important in maintaining a healthy metabolism and immune system in the chickens.
Vitamin B6 helps maintain a normal amount of amino acid in the blood. This will cause the immune system of the chickens to become stronger.
Vitamin B12 helps the body make red blood cells. It also helps prevent megaloblastic anemia, which is a blood condition that could make your chickens tired and weak.
Can Baby Chickens Eat Banana Peels?
Baby chickens can eat banana peels, but only when they are around 3 weeks old. During the first few weeks after they are born, their digestive system isn’t developed enough to digest the banana peels.
If you try to feed them banana peels, it could cause crop impaction. This is serious and could lead to the death of the chick.
Instead, chicks should be fed starter feed. The feed is formulated with the right amount of nutrition to support their fast growth and overall health.
Once the baby chickens are about 3 weeks, you can start to introduce banana peels to them. I recommend boiling the peels first to make them soft. Then cut it into smaller pieces and give it to your chicks.
How Do You Prepare Banana Peels For Your Chickens?
Before you can feed banana peels to your chickens, you’ll need to prepare them first. Simply tossing the whole peel to your chickens won’t get eaten since it’s tough.
Below are the two methods to prepare the banana peels:
Boiling Banana Skins
This is the easiest and simplest method of making the banana peels easier for your chickens to eat. It will make the peel soft.
Start by washing the banana peels thoroughly with clean water. Then heat water in a pan until it boils.
Once the water starts to boil, place the peels into the pan. Leave it to cook for about 10 minutes.
After that, remove the banana peels from the pan and let them cool to room temperature. Then toss them to the chickens or cut them into smaller pieces.
Cut Banana Skins
Another method is to cut the banana peels into tiny pieces. This will make it easier for them to eat.
You can toss the peels to the chickens or mix them with other foods.
How Many Banana Peels Should You Feed Your Chickens?
Banana peels are nutritious for chickens, but it doesn’t have enough nutrition that your chickens need on a daily basis. For that reason, it’s best to only give them a small amount of the peels.
Feeding them too much banana peels could cause them to become full and not eat their staple food.
How Often Should You Feed Banana Peels To Your Chickens?
Banana peels can be fed to them on a daily basis. Just be sure to give them a small amount of it at each feeding.
Like other treats, banana peels should only make up 10% of their entire diet. The rest should come in the form of quality commercial feeds. The feeds are formulated with the right amount of nutrition to meet the chicken’s dietary needs.
Therefore, as long as you’re giving banana peels to your chickens in moderation, it won’t affect their health negatively.
Other Fruits That Chickens Can Eat
Apples make a great treat for chickens. It’s loaded with nutrition that the chickens need to stay healthy and strong. Be sure to remove the seeds from the apple before giving them any. The seeds contain cyanide, which is toxic to the chickens.
Chickens love peaches and it’s healthy for them. The pits contain cyanide, so remove them before giving the peach to your chickens.
Kiwi is healthy for chickens to eat. It contains an abundance of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. However, the fruit has a lot of sugar, so it’s best to feed them in moderation. Too much sugar can lead to obesity, high blood pressure, and other health problems.
Not only is it healthy to feed bananas to your chickens, but the banana peels are also great for them too. It has plenty of vitamins and minerals that your chickens can benefit from. Just make sure to wash the peels thoroughly or boil them to remove any pesticides and other chemicals before serving them to your chickens.