We are so excited around here! When you live in Minnesota, you learn to appreciate the beautiful weather. So for us, Summer is finally here and we’re celebrating!
During these summer months , it’s easy for us humans to cool off at the local swimming pool or lake. However, chickens find the heat a bit uncomfortable and need some relief. In fact, chickens don’t have sweat glands so it’s very important to provide them with plenty of shade, fresh cold water and watch them very close. Chickens can get overheated quickly and go downhill much faster than you’d think.
One of my favorite things to do is to provide my flock with some fun summer treats. Especially treats that help them cool off when it’s hot! Each flock is a bit different, but I haven’t met any chickens who don’t love watermelon. My girls go crazy for it! My family even teases me about buying more watermelon for my chickens than I do for them! Haha!
Another fun treat on a really hot day is to provide ice water (add some Flock Fixer™) and then add in some meal worms and grapes or cucumbers (another one of my flock’s favorites). That way they dip their beaks into the ice cold water while getting treats on top of it. Plus, Flock Fixer™ is rich in vitamins and electrolytes that help keep your chickens hydrated, restore their nutrient balance and support their immunity.
Almost every week I also hang up a head of cabbage or lettuce for my chickens to peck at. They absolutely love this as well!
Honestly, chickens are like little tiny garbage disposals. They love leftovers and the treats we give them. However, please remember to keep their treats limited and watch out for leftovers that aren’t good for them! For more information on table scraps you shouldn’t feed your chickens, check out my previous blog here.
For my treat to food ratio, I try and follow the 90/10 rule. 90 percent of your chicken’s nutrition needs to come from their chicken crumble. For crumble I buy non-medicated because I want to feed them as naturally as possible. Plus, with the Strong Animals Chicken Essentials products I use I have no need for medicated food.
The other 10 percent of their diet consists of treats! Free range chickens will find all sorts of good snacks out and about, but it is still important to provide them with a nutrient rich chicken food as well.
Believe me, treats are a fun way for you to connect with your flock and your chickens will love you for it!
–The Wing Lady