Can Chickens Eat Cherries? (Nutrition, Advantage & Feeding Tips)

There are many ways that chickens bring their owners joy. One of those ways could be their great love for food. It’s fun to see them go crazy for treats, and it’s astonishing to see them demolish it within minutes!

Chickens are great lovers of food. With that, rarely do they say no to it. As most handlers already know, this is both a problem and not a problem. It is not a problem because they would most likely eat anything you throw at them. The problem is, they can’t eat everything.

Well, you don’t have to worry! We will be examining cherries for today.

This article will cover

  • Can Chickens Eat Cherries?
  • Can Chickens Eat the Cherry Skin?
  • Can Chickens Eat the Cherry Leaves?
  • Can Chickens Eat the Cherry Pits and Stems?
  • Do Chickens Like Cherries?
  • Are Cherries Good for Chickens?
  • Can Chicks Eat Cherries?
  • Cherries for the Summer
  • Other Summer Treats
  • Cherry Cautions

Can Chickens Eat Cherries?

can chickens have cherries

Yes, but some parts are safer than others. You don’t have to worry. We will tackle each part.

For now, let’s talk about the flesh.

The flesh is one of the safest parts of the fruit. You would need to be a little careful with the other portions, but not with this part. The only precaution you have to worry about with this part is the common concerns.

Now, let’s talk about the other parts.

Can Chickens Eat the Cherry Skin?

You don’t have to peel the cherries. Your chickens can eat the skin.

The cherry skin is also safe to eat. You might want to give it a good wash if it is from the store. As a general rule, it’s good to thoroughly wash any fruit or vegetable you bought from the store. The skin or anything exposed might not be unhealthy for the chickens, but it might have a chemical coating. It is those things that could be harmful to your chickens.

Can Chickens Eat the Cherry Leaves?

Can Chickens Eat the Cherry Leaves

Here’s where the cherry gets a little complicated as a treat. Chickens can eat the leaves, but there are some precautions to be taken.

You can let your chickens have the leaves as long as you’re not giving them the wilted ones. The wilted leaves contain cyanide. As we all know, this substance is harmful! Because of this, some chicken handlers have decided to stay away from the leaves.

I also steer clear from leaves, but that is a personal preference. I usually steer clear from treats that need to be in a particular state to be safe for chickens. Again, it’s a personal preference. If you want to give your chickens cherry leaves, make sure to check if they’re still in a healthy shade of green!

Read more about cherry leaves, cyanide, and their effect on livestock here.

Can Chickens Eat the Cherry Pits and Stems?

can chickens eat cherry pits

Now, let’s talk about the pits and stems. You can let the chickens have both, but here are some things you should know first.

Let’s discuss the pits first. People in the poultry world are not united in their view of the pits. One reason is that the pits contain some cyanide. In other words, it is poisonous. It would be easy to think that it is not safe to give to chickens. Well, it is!

The pits do have a harmful substance for the chickens, but you need a large amount for it to take effect. Unless you’re going to give them more cherries than allowed, you should not be worried!

Despite all that, some keepers still stay away from the pits. Some are simply being extra careful and steering clear of toxic elements. Some, because they view the pits as a choking hazard.

It seems there isn’t a problem at all. Chickens generally don’t even like the pits. Many handlers say that when they give their chickens the whole cherry, the seeds get left behind.

On the other hand, the stem also poses almost the same risk as the pits. Maybe just a little lower. However, like the pits, chickens don’t seem to like them all that much.

Overall, you don’t have to go out of your way to give your chickens the pits and stems. On the other hand, you don’t have to get rid of the seeds and stems as well. Pecking once or twice at the pits and stems won’t hurt your chickens.

Do Chickens Like Cherries?

Generally, chickens go crazy for the flesh and skin and stay away from the pits, stems, and leaves.

It is important to remember that chickens have different preferences. Don’t be surprised if your chickens don’t like the cherries you give them. There are dozens and dozens of cherries. It is likely that if they don’t develop a liking for one type, they would probably like another.

You can throw your chickens a few cherries to see if they like it. It’s always a good idea to see their reaction to a new treat first. This way, there would be less mess in the run if they don’t like the new snack.

Are Cherries Good for Chickens

Are Cherries Good for Chickens?

We know the chickens could eat the fruit. We also know that most of them like it. Now, let’s see if it’s good for them.

Cherries have a lot of good things in them. They also don’t have a lot of unhealthy elements in them. For one, cherries have vitamin A and calcium. Furthermore, it doesn’t have many calories and sodium. Win-win!

However, cherries do have a large amount of sugar. Also, it doesn’t have all the nutrients the chickens need. So, cherries can be a good treat, but they can’t be a staple in the diet of your chickens.

100g Cherries Nutrition

Nutrient

Value

energy

63 kcal

water

82.2 g

protein

1.06 g

fat

0.2 g

carbohydrate

16 g

fiber

2.1 g

Vitamin B-6

0.049 mg

Vitamin C

7 mg

Vitamin K

2.1 ug

Manganese

0.07 mg

iron

0.36 mg

potassium

222 mg

magnesium

11 mg

phosphorus

21 mg

sodium

0 mg

zinc

0.07 mg

Folate

4 ug

Can Chicks Eat Cherries?

Since we already talked about the adults, let’s not forget about the little ones!

The general rule is that the chicks can eat what the chickens can. So, yes! The chicks can eat cherries. You only need to be a little careful.

Even if you’re letting your chickens have the pits, you would have to take them out for your chicks. Take into account the size of your chicks. The seeds could be a choking hazard for them.

However, like with adults, limit the cherries you give them. Remember, chicks should mostly stay on starter feed at least until the 6th week. After that, you can introduce more treats to them.

Can Chicks Eat Cherries

Cherries for the Summer

Cherries could be a great addition to the summer treats of your chickens.

This fruit holds a lot of water. As you might already know, chickens need more water during the summer. Giving them hydrating treats will surely help with the summer heat.

Since the cherry doesn’t have tons of calories, it’s one of the best summer treats if you have any overweight chickens on your run.

You might want to chill them before giving them to your chickens to maximize the refreshing effect!

Other Summer Treats

can chickens eat cherries

It’s never too early or too late to prepare for the summer! Here are a few treats you might want to consider:

  • Watermelons– This fruit holds a large amount of water and renders all its parts safe to eat. With that said, you don’t have to worry about the seeds, unlike with the cherry!
  • Strawberries– You can also add strawberries to the list. It is composed of around 92% water.
  • Radishes– Switching over to the vegetables and keeping in line with the color code, you can add radishes to the list.

Again, you might want to chill these treats to optimize their refreshing effect on your chickens.

If you’re looking for more high water content treats, then you might want to check this list out. You can feed everything on the list to your chickens.

Cherry Cautions

Cherries are pretty much safe to eat, but if you want to keep a healthy chicken on your land, you might want to consider these things.

  • Glazed Cherries– Try to stay away from glazed cherries. Chickens don’t need extra sugar, and this type of cherry has sugar all over it!
  • Dried Cherries– You can let your chickens have some dried cherries, but you might want to stay away from those that have sugar coatings. Again, chickens don’t need the extra sugar.

Summary

Can chickens eat cherries?

Every part of the cherry is safe to eat, but some portions are safer than others. However, if you allow them cherries only in moderation, then you do not have to worry.

Chickens would most likely only go crazy over the flesh and skin. On the other hand, they may not like the pits, stems, and leaves at all. These parts may have some harmful substance, but you could also give them to your chicken.

If you have some little chicks, you can also let them have some cherries. However, you might want to take out the pits or chop them, so it will not be a choking hazard.

Cherries have many healthy substances in them. Also, they don’t have a large number of unhealthy elements in them. However, it can’t be a part of the staple diet of your chickens. It doesn’t have all the things they would need. With that said, cherries can be a healthy treat!

 

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