If you have a vegetable garden, one thing that cannot be missed planting is zucchini. Zucchinis are easy to grow in the limited space of your backyard garden. So, you must be thinking about what to do for the excess zucchini. That’s true, you cannot consume all within or less than a week. Do you have poultry? If so, you can start feeding them zucchini without any fear.
Let me explain to you more about feeding zucchini to chickens. Let us begin.
Can Chickens Eat Zucchini?
Zucchini, also known as courgette or baby marrow, is a safe food for chickens. So, the answer to the question is, yes. Your chickens can eat zucchini.
Zucchinis are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are essential for the growth and development of your chickens. It does not contain any harmful ingredients that adversely affect their health.
Due to the high density of nutrients, your chickens will have a healthy and strong life by consuming zucchini. You only have to be careful, if zucchini taste more bitter than it normally does. Therefore, it is recommended to taste zucchini by yourself before feeding to chickens.
Can Chickens Eat Zucchini Leaves and Seeds?
You may be having this question because there are many consumable fruits and vegetables yet their leaves and seeds cannot. For instance, bananas. Your chickens can eat flesh and even the boiled peel. However, eating banana leaves is something that cannot do.
However, there is nothing like that with zucchini. Neither Zucchini leaves nor seeds are harmful. Therefore, you can let your chickens eat them without any fear of their well-being.
The best way is to chop anything you provide them into small pieces. You already know that chickens cannot gobble hard, rough-skinned peels and leaves. However, smaller pieces would do.
How to Feed Zucchini to Chickens?
There are two ways to feed zucchini to chicken. The easiest method is to provide them raw zucchini.
Here is how you do that:
- First, wash and clean the vegetable. The chickens won’t eat the peel, yet cleanliness should be your priority.
- After that, split the zucchini in half down the middle. If not this way, you can use a knife and cut it into two parts. That way, your chickens have access to both flesh and seeds. Remember, chickens love to eat seeds, so do not remove them.
- After that, keep zucchini somewhere near to your chickens. They will peck at it and eat whenever they are hungry. A large portion of zucchini will keep them busy for long hours. I usually enjoy keeping chickens busy, so they do not cluck.
There is also another method to feed zucchini to chickens. First, cook it just the same way you cook for yourself. However, avoid adding spices a lot because chickens have a sensitive digestive system. If that causes inflammation, the chickens will have to suffer from stomach pain.
When you cook zucchini, cut it into small pieces or cubes. The zucchini pieces become soft and easy to gobble when cooked. The chickens will enjoy cooked zucchini for sure. If you haven’t tried it yet, go for it today.
Also, feeding cooked zucchini help you to reduce the wastage of food. You can feed the leftover of your zucchini meal to chickens as it does not cause any harmful effects.
How Much Zucchini To Feed Chickens?
While zucchini is packed with nutrition that’s healthy for the chickens to eat, it’s recommended to feed them in a small amount. The reason for this is that zucchini doesn’t contain all the nutrients that the chickens need on a daily basis to stay healthy.
Feeding them zucchini excessively will cause them to become full and not eat chicken feeds.
Therefore, for an adult chicken, you can give them a couple of slices of zucchini. For baby chickens that are at least 3 weeks old, you can give them a tiny piece of zucchini.
How Often To Feed Zucchini To Chickens?
Zucchini should be fed to the chickens in moderation. This vegetable isn’t one of their staple food.
Avoid feeding them zucchini every day. Zucchini should only make up 10% of their entire diet. The rest should consist of quality commercial feed. These feeds have been formulated with the right amount of nutrition to meet the chicken’s dietary requirements.
Therefore, it’s best to feed zucchini to your chickens, once or twice per week.
Nutrients in Zucchini
The zucchini is rich in many essential vitamins and minerals. One cup of cooked zucchini provides:
- Calories – 28
- Protein – 1g
- Fat – 0g
- Carbohydrate – 7g
- Sugar – 3g
- Sodium – 5 mg
- Fiber – 3g
In addition to these, zucchinis are a source of vitamin C, folate, potassium, and magnesium.
Health Benefits Of Feeding Zucchini To Your Chickens
The nutrients in zucchini contribute to several health benefits. Keep on reading to know what are those.
Promote Healthy Digestion
Since zucchini is rich in water, it leads to softening stools. It reduces the stomach pains and constipation of your chickens.
In addition to that, zucchini contains both soluble and insoluble fiber. It aids in healthily maintaining the digestive system.
The animals cannot show if they are undergoing a bad health condition. We have to be careful about what we feed them. I think zucchini will help you to prevent your chickens from digestive system-related health issues.
Improve Heart Health
Another noticeable health benefit of zucchini is that it improves heart health. As zucchini is rich in potassium, high blood pressure can be reduced. Healthier blood pressure is linked to lower heart disease risks.
Zucchini is a source of carotenoid which helps in strengthening the bones. The stronger the bones, the healthier your chickens are. Hence, they are less vulnerable to infections, and other seasonal diseases. Your chickens may feel strong and active throughout the day.
The chickens stay both indoors and outdoors. Consuming zucchini builds up shields the skin from UV rays and solutions. Since zucchini is a watery vegetable, it also helps your chickens to stay hydrated.
When looking at these health benefits, it is clear that zucchini plays an important role in your chickens’ diet.
Other Vegetables That Chickens Can Eat
Celery is a root vegetable that’s nutrient-rich, yet low in calories. It contains high levels of several types of antioxidants, which helps prevent diseases and other illness. Chickens can eat both cooked and raw celery. Be sure to remove the fiber on the outside of the celery to make it easier for the chickens to eat it.
Bell peppers are packed with vitamins and minerals. Also, it’s a good source of fiber and antioxidants. You can feed cooked or raw bell peppers to them. Be sure to remove the stem and leaves from the pepper first. These parts of the pepper contain solanine, which is a toxin known to be very harmful to chickens.
Yam is rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Chickens can eat both cooked and raw yam. Make sure to cut them into smaller pieces to make it easier for the chickens to eat.
Chickens like to taste different fruits and vegetables. Obviously, they prefer diversity in their meal. Just like kids, they get disappointed when having the same meal every day. Therefore, you can make a difference by giving them zucchini at least once or twice a week. Believe my word, chickens love zucchini.
However, make sure your zucchini treat is not bitter or spoiled and does not contain any chemicals. The chicken’s health should always be your priority.
Let us know the reaction of your chickens. Did they love tasting zucchini?