Can Chickens Eat Lavender?

Can Chickens Eat Lavender

Lavender is an herb that’s commonly used in aromatherapy. However, due to their other natural properties that it posses, lavender is also used to treat stress, anti-inflammatory, and antifungal problems. While it’s mostly used to treat ailments outside the body, can chickens eat lavender? Will it harm them?

Can chickens eat lavender? Yes, chickens can eat lavender, including the flowers and sprigs. However, lavenders should be fed to them in moderation due to a toxin known as linalool. This toxin is found in small concentrations in the lavender that it won’t harm them if the chickens are not fed too much of it. Besides the toxin, lavender contains properties that could help the chickens reduce stress, anxiety, and even depression.

Is It Healthy For Chickens To Eat Lavender?

Guinea Pig Eating
Lavender keeps insects away. Lavender is a natural insect repellent. To keep insects and bugs away from the chickens, you can plant the herb around their coop. Also, when replacing their bedding, you can place the lavender under their bedding to help keep insects away.

Not only will it helps keep the insects away from the coop, but it will keep the coop smelling fresh.

Helps relieve stress. Chickens sometimes are kept in a confined area for a prolonged time, especially during the winter months. This will them to become stressed and have anxiety. Of course, these two conditions can lead to health issues for the chickens.

Lavender has properties that help lessen anxiety and stress in the chickens. By feeding them this herb during the winter months, it could help prevent stress.

Increase circulation. Lavender will help increase blood circulation for the chickens. This is especially helpful during the winter months when they are usually not very active.

Also, lavender is beneficial for sitting hens. When they are laying eggs, the hens will usually sit on their eggs for long periods of time. This inactivity will cause their blood circulation to slow down. By feeding them lavender, it will help sitting hens with their blood circulation.

Is Lavender Safe For Chickens?

Lavender, the plant, does contain a small amount of a compound called linalool. This compound is toxic to chickens.

However, linalool is found in small concentrations in the lavender that it rarely becomes a health issue.

The problems arise only when the chickens eat a large quantity of lavender. Anyways, you should always any food besides commercial feeds only 10% of their diet.

Can Chickens Eat Lavender Flowers and Sprigs?

The chickens can eat the flowers and sprigs of the lavender plant. Due to them containing the toxin, it should be fed to them in moderation. Feeding them too much of it could cause them to become sick.

When feeding the lavender sprigs, cut them into smaller pieces first. This will make it easier for them to eat and digest.

As for the flowers, you can strip them off the plants and toss them to the chickens.

Can Chickens Eat Lavender

How To Feed Lavender To Chickens

Feeding Fresh Lavender

Feeding fresh lavender can help boost nutrition for the chickens. Fresh lavender has a higher concentration of nutrition that dried or cooked ones do.

To feed lavender to the chickens, give the herb a good wash first to remove any pests and insects that may be on the herb.

Mixing Lavender With Their Feeds

Mixing the lavender in their feeds is an excellent way to boost their nutrition level. Also, it’s a great way to give lavender to chickens that won’t eat fresh ones toss to them. Yes, some chickens are very picky at what they eat.

Before mixing them lavender, clean it thoroughly first to remove any pests that may be on the plants. You can use all parts of the lavender including the sprigs and flowers.

Chop or dice them up finely and mix it with their feeds. Then place the mixture into their feeder and the chickens will start pecking at it and eating it.

Letting Chickens Feed On Lavender from the Garden

One of the best methods to feed lavender to the chickens is to let them eat straight from the garden. Not only will the chickens get to eat fresh herbs, but you won’t need to prepare the lavender in advance. Simply let them into the garden and they’ll start eating the herb right away.

When letting the chickens eat from the garden, there are a couple of things you need to do. If not, the entire garden can be destroyed by them, especially if you have a large flock.

When growing a lavender garden, you can build a fence around it to avoid the chickens from getting into it. Build a fence that’s low enough for them to stick their head into the garden and eat the lavender. Also, make sure it’s high enough that they can’t get into the garden. Building a fence to about the height of their chest should be high enough.

Another great thing about the lavender garden is that it can be grown all year round. In the summer, you can grow them in the backyard garden. In the winter, lavender can be grown indoors. Grow them in a container and when the lavender is mature, simply bring the container to the chickens and they’ll have fresh herbs to eat.

How Much And How Often To Feed Lavender To Chickens

Chickens will practically eat as much lavender that you give them. However, you will want to limit the amount of the herb. Like all other herbs, lavender should only make up 10% of their entire diet. The rest should come from quality commercial feeds.

Therefore, only feed lavender to the chickens in moderation. This means once or twice per week is plenty of lavender for them. Also, you want to give them other herbs besides lavender. By feeding them other herbs like sage, basil, and thyme, it will provide nutrition that the lavender doesn’t have.

Other Herb That Chickens Can Eat

Mint

Mint is a great herb that’s popular among herb growers. This herb has that mint smell that is versatile which can be used in drinks and cooking. As for chickens, mint is a great digestive aid and it’s packed with antioxidants. Also, the mint scent from the herb is excellent at repelling insects and other pests.

Sage

This herb is rich in antioxidants and a good source of vitamins and minerals. By feeding them sage, it will help them build a strong immune system. Due to their soft leaves, feeding the chickens this herb to them will not last very long.

Thyme

Thyme is packed with vitamin C and a good source of vitamin A. These two vitamins will help keep the chickens from becoming sick. If they are sick, giving them thyme will help get them back in good health quickly.

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