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Chickens enjoy eating table scraps, and most leftovers from your table are fine to feed your chickens as a supplement to their normal diet once they reach about 15 weeks of age. Raw or cooked vegetables are good, with some exceptions noted below. Cooked meat is also okay, as long as it is cut into sufficiently small pieces. Rice or other grain is also fine. Here are a few other ideas:
- carrots (cooked or shredded)
- lettuce or other greens
- melon (cantaloupe or watermelon rinds)
A few things that you should not feed your chickens are:
- salt – avoid excessive amounts of it.
- citrus or citrus peel – opinions vary on this.
- processed foods – chickens are going to fare better off of a home cooked meal than a leftover pizza or a TV dinner.
- raw potato peels
- strong tasting foods, such as garlic or onions
- avocado pits
- spoiled or rotten foods
- soft drinks
- coffee or coffee grinds
- chocolate (contains theobromine, which may be toxic to birds)
- foods that you would normally not put on a compost pile, such as those which are greasy or high in fat
If you have other questions about feeding table scraps to your chickens and they aren’t answered here, leave us a comment below.
For more information on feeds and feeding of chickens, see Storey’s Guide to Raising Chickens, by Gail Damerow.