There is a lot of food that you can feed your backyard chickens. These animals are not picky and will eat almost anything that you give them, or they can find. When it comes to olives, you may wonder if you can feed them to your chickens.
Let’s take a deeper look at how nutritious this fruit is and whether you should include it in your flock’s diet. We’ll also go through the most often asked topics. Finally, we’ll discuss suitable serving sizes and how to feed them if you chose to do so.
Can Chickens Eat Olives?
Yes, chickens can eat olives, but only in moderation.
They are naturally heavy in fat, which must be kept in check in your birds’ diet. Uncured olives are the best since they have the least salt, preservatives, and other chemicals. Ensure that they have not been steeped in oils, marinades, or other potentially harmful substances.
Is It Safe For Chickens To Eat Olives?
Olives are suitable for hens as long as you give them fresh, less processed types. They make an excellent treat when the proper alternatives are available, and hens like pecking at them. Keep in mind that olives may come in various shapes and sizes, which aren’t necessarily ideal for these birds.
Also, remove the pits as they pose a choking hazard for the chickens. It’s nice to know that hens can eat olives; they’re efficient and adaptable and can be purchased in supermarkets worldwide. In reality, the flavor and size of olives vary depending on where they are cultivated.
It is important to remember because several preparations render them inappropriate for chickens. If you wish to serve them olives, make sure they are not coated with oil, spices, or filled with any other unsuitable items, such as cheeses.
Health Benefits Of Feeding Olives To Chickens
Olives contain many essential nutrients that chickens need to remain healthy. Olives are rich in vitamin E and K, antioxidants, and monounsaturated fats.
The nutrition facts for 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of ripe, canned olives are:
- Calories: 115
- Water: 80%
- Protein: 0.8 grams
- Carbs: 6.3 grams
- Sugar: 0 grams
- Fiber: 3.2 grams
- Fat: 10.7 grams
- Saturated: 1.42 grams
- Monounsaturated: 7.89 grams
- Polyunsaturated: 0.91 grams
The above data is from the USDA
Below are some health benefits of feeding olives to your chickens:
Vitamin E: Olives are disliked because of their high amounts of vitamin E. With so many advantages to only one vitamin, you may be asking why more people do not give olives to their chickens.
Vitamin E promotes rapid development in young chickens. Your chickens will develop faster and plumper than birds deficient in vitamin E. Most diets already include enough vitamin E for your flock, but don’t overdo it.
Vitamin E is also beneficial to egg-laying chickens. The added vitamins will benefit your pullets, especially if they are about to lay their first egg.
Iron and Calcium: Iron is essential for egg-laying chickens. Iron promotes cell proliferation and boosts oxygen consumption. Your chickens will become anemic if they do not get enough iron, but too much iron might cause blood poisoning.
The ideal balance is required, but olive treats will not exceed their iron requirements. We all know that calcium is the primary component of eggshells.
Most people select a calcium-fortified diet for egg-laying chickens. Giving your chickens a few olives is another excellent method to supplement their calcium levels.
Calcium also aids in the maintenance of the beak and bones in chickens of all ages.
How To Feed Olives To Chickens?
You may feed olives to your chickens in a variety of ways. Keepers throw olives in front of their chickens and enjoy playing with them. The technique adopted here is to toss a few olives throughout the coop/run. Researchers don’t recommend providing olives with their pit.
Another method to give olives to chickens is to prepare them ahead of time. It’s best to cut the olives into slices, quarters, or segments. It makes them more accessible for your birds to ingest and allows you to remove the pits quickly.
Finally, you may prepare them with other meals you want to offer or mix them with different treats/regular diets. It may be an excellent method to enhance your flock’s nutrition, improve the flavor of their feeds, and persuade them to eat stuff they may have previously rejected.
How Often Can Chickens Eat Olives?
The key to feeding your hens treats is to keep it around 10%.
Canned olives daily are probably not a brilliant idea. The salt in cured olives will make your chickens sick. To stay on the safe side, they shouldn’t even be a weekly treat.
However, every other week or so should be OK.
If you feed fresh olives, you may do so much more often. While you don’t want to provide it every day, every few days to once a week is OK. Fresh olives are a tasty snack as long as your hens continue to consume a balanced diet.
Other Fruits That Chickens Can Eat
Mango is loaded with nutrition and health for your chickens to eat. During the summer, mango can be given to them to help keep them hydrated. However, be sure to only feed mango to your chickens in moderation. Avoid giving the chickens any green mangoes, as those are tough and will be too difficult for them to digest.
Strawberries are another fruit you can serve your chickens. It has a lot of vitamins and minerals and contains a lot of water. Avoid dried strawberries and strawberry jam as those contain too much sugar.
Watermelon makes a healthy and nutritious fruit for your chickens. They are loaded with many essential vitamins and minerals and are high in water content. This fruit makes a great treat for the chickens in the summer, as it helps keep them hydrated.
Overall, olives make a good treat for your chickens. Just be sure to remove the pit before feeding them the olives. Also, feed them in moderation since olives are high in fat content.