Do Chickens Eat Roaches?

Roaches are everywhere living in homes, barns, and even the chicken coop. As for chickens, do they each roaches? Is it safe for them to eat it as well?

So, do chickens eat roaches? Yes, chickens will eat roaches. Chickens are opportunistic eaters and will eat anything and everything that seems edible. Roaches are safe for chickens to eat, but what could make them dangerous is what’ve they eaten and the places they have been to. Roaches are known to carry some of the deadliest diseases and if the chicken eats one of them that has the disease, it could make them very ill.

Is It Safe For Chickens To Eat Roaches?

There are around 4,500 different types of roaches that exist, but only about 30 lives around humans.

Roaches come in all different sizes and colors.

All roaches are safe for chickens to eat as they don’t have any toxins that could the chickens.

Are Roaches Bad For Chickens?

Roaches make a tasty and nutritious snack for chickens. However, there are some risks involve when feeding them roaches.

Roaches are known to carry parasites and harmful diseases.

Below are some of the diseases that roaches can carry:

  • Cholera
  • E. Coli
  • Salmonella
  • Typhoid fever
  • Poliomyelitis

These diseases are dangerous and can make the chickens very ill. Some of which are deadly and can kill a chicken within a day.

Besides parasites and diseases to worry about, the chemicals you use on the garden and lawn also pose a risk to your chickens.

If you or your neighbor sprays chemicals such as pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers on the lawn and garden, the roaches can be contaminated with it.

When the chickens eat the roaches, these chemicals will into their body as well.

Can Chickens Eat Dubia Roaches?

Yes, chickens can eat dubia roaches. It is one of the most popular types of roach to feed pet reptiles.

However, it’s also expensive and won’t make much sense to feed your chickens.

Can Chickens Eat American Cockroaches?

Yes, chickens can eat American cockroaches. These roaches are found naturally in the backyard and sometimes in the home.

If chickens come across them, they won’t hesitate to eat them. Due to their small size and will usually hide in crevices and small places, it will be hard for the chickens to find and eat them.

Can Chickens Eat Madagascar Hissing Cockroach?

Yes, chickens can eat Madagascar hissing cockroaches. This species of roaches are the largest in the world. It is very nutritious, but it’s also expensive as well. Most chicken owners will not feed them due to their cost.

If you want to give your chickens a special treat once in a while, this species of roaches will be for them.

How To Feed Roaches To Feed Chickens

Feeding roaches to the chickens is quite simple. You can let them roam in your yard freely and find roaches themselves or buy them from the pet stores.

If you’re buying them from the pet store, just make sure the roaches are alive and healthy. Toss the roaches to the chickens, and they will go running after them.

How Many Roaches To Feed Chickens?

If you let your chickens roam freely, you won’t have to worry about how much they can eat. Most of the time, it will be hard for them to find roaches around the yard.

On the other hand, if you bought roaches to feed your chickens, only feed them in moderation.

How To Rid The Chicken Coop Of Roaches?

If there are few roaches in the coop, more than likely the chickens will eat them all up.

However, if there are too many roaches in the coop, you’ll need to get rid of them. The chickens won’t be able to eat all of them and those that are left in the coop could cause health problems for the chickens.

There are many different ways to get rid of the roaches, but most of them involve using chemicals. These can be harmful to the chickens and will usually need them to stay out of the coop for a couple of days.

Therefore, what I recommend getting rid of the roaches is to use food-grade diatomaceous earth.

You can sprinkle diatomaceous earth all over the coop, even when the chickens are in there. It is safe for them.

When roaches and other insects come in contact with it, it will dry the insects out and kill them.

You can pick some diatomaceous earth from Amazon.

Other Insects That Chickens Can Eat


Mealworms are packed with nutrition, and it makes a great snack for chickens. Due to their high amount of protein content, it could cause them health issues.

However, for hens that are laying eggs, you can feed them a lot of mealworms. Hens need plenty of protein to stay healthy while laying eggs and to produce strong and tasty eggs.


Crickets can be fed to chickens and make a tasty treat for them. Chickens may occasionally find crickets in the yards, which they will catch and eat. Be careful though, especially if the yard or garden are sprayed with chemicals such as pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers.

If you do want to feed them crickets, it’s best to buy them from pet stores or online. These are crickets that are raised strictly to be fed to your pets.


Roaches are safe and nutritious for chickens to eat. The only problem with roaches is those found in the wild. Since you don’t know where they have been, they could be carrying diseases with them. For that reason, it’s best to try to get rid of the roaches before your chickens see them. Of course, roaches make a great snack for chickens, and they will eat it whenever they see one.