Chickens love to eat. It is one of their favorite activities of all time. You could throw them anything. They would come running trying to taste it. Most of the time, they will eat anything and everything!
Unfortunately, we cannot always let the little ones eat whatever they want. That might be enjoyable for some time, but not in the long run. Not all food and treats are healthy for your chickens. Some unsuspecting-looking treats could even kill them.
It is so important to study any food we want to introduce to the flock.
That is where we come in! We are here to help you in your chicken-raising journey. We know you only want what is safe for your chickens. We understand, and we are all for it!
Without further ado, let us talk about our food of the day – the watermelon.
This article will cover
- Can Chickens Eat Watermelon?
- Can Chickens Eat Watermelon Rind?
- Can Chickens Eat Watermelon Seeds?
- Can Chickens Eat the Watermelon Skin?
- Can Chickens Eat the Watermelon Stalks and Leaves?
- Can Chickens Eat Unripe Watermelons?
- Are Watermelons Good for Chickens?
- Watermelons as a Summer Treat
- Can Chicks Eat Watermelon?
- Things to Keep in Mind When Giving Your Chickens Watermelon
Can Chickens Eat Watermelon?
As always, let us answer this question first. Yes, chickens can eat watermelons.
Let us look at the nutritional value of the watermelon. You will see that it does not have any elements such as persin. It does not have harmful components, that is.
As a side note, you must avoid anything with persin in it. It will not only hurt your chicken. With the right amount, it could kill your little guys.
Back to watermelons, this fruit contains many things that are healthy for chickens. We will get into the details in a bit.
Can Chickens Eat Watermelon Rind?
The watermelon has a lot of parts. We will answer how good it is for the chickens, but let us talk about the different parts of this fruit first.
As the avocado has taught us, it does not mean that if one part of the fruit is safe for consumption, the whole fruit is already safe to eat. It is always good to research all the different parts of a fruit or vegetable.
The rind is the closest part to the flesh. Your chickens could peck at it as well if you toss them a slice. Well, you do not need to worry! The rind is not as juicy or tasty as the flesh, but your chickens could consume it too.
They might not seek it, especially if the insides are present. However, you might see them attacking it once the red is all gone.
Can Chickens Eat Watermelon Seeds?
Next, let us talk about the seeds.
Watermelon is one of my favorite fruits. But I have to be honest. The seeds put me off, as it is too troublesome at times.
It seems the seeds do not put off the chickens. Furthermore, you do not have to worry about giving them the seeds. It is safe for them too.
Can Chickens Eat the Watermelon Skin?
We have discussed the flesh, the rind, and the seeds. Now, let us talk about the skin.
Well, they could also eat the skin. However, hear me out first. The skin could be hard to peck. You might want to skip this one or chop it into smaller portions.
Are the watermelons you are giving to the chickens from the market? You might want to clean the skin a little more. There are many chemicals used in commercial products (e.g., pesticides). While the skin is not harmful to them, those chemicals might be.
Can Chickens Eat the Watermelon Stalks and Leaves?
Now, let us talk about the stalks and leaves. Well, you might be happy to know that it is safe for the chickens!
Are you growing watermelons? Are you using pesticides? If so, you might not want to give the stalks and leaves to the chickens. The same goes if it’s store-bought. Unlike the skin, there is a possibility the leaves have gotten some of the chemicals. These chemicals are not healthy for your chickens.
Can Chickens Eat Unripe Watermelons?
We usually do not eat unripe watermelons. However, it might be good to consider if chickens can consume unripe watermelons.
As the tomato has taught us, some fresh produce is only safe for chickens when it becomes ripe. We do not have that problem with the watermelon. You can let your chickens eat this fruit, whether it is mature or not.
They would most likely prefer the ripe watermelons, but you will not have to worry about any health problems if you toss them some unripe pieces.
However, if you give them watermelons, you should give them the ripe ones. Are you wondering why? Read on to the following portions!
Are Watermelons Good for Chickens?
Now that we know that every part of the fruit is safe to eat. Let us talk about how good it is for your chickens.
Click here to have a more detailed look at the components of the watermelon.
The watermelon is rich in water. This substance is good not only for us humans but for chickens too. Furthermore, the watermelon also has many other things that could be beneficial for your chickens. The watermelon has copper, potassium, and various vitamins.
However, the watermelon is low on protein. It does have some healthy stuff in there, but it does not have everything that your chickens need.
Watermelons are healthy when given in moderation. It could be one of the best treats you could give your chickens, but it should stay as a treat and not part of their staple diet.
100g Watermelon Nutrition
Watermelons as a Summer Treat
Watermelons are one of our favorite treats during the summer. It is lovely for every season, but its juicy goodness reels us in best when the sun is up and scorching.
Well, it is probably the same for our chickens. You can make the best out of this treat during the summer season.
First, watermelon is rich in water, which could be helpful against heat.
Furthermore, this fruit contains lycopene and beta-carotene. These are two things that help against the harmful effects of the sun on your chickens.
Earlier, we said that if you want to give your chickens watermelons, you should hand them ripe ones at that. That is because ripe watermelons contain higher levels of lycopene and beta-carotene.
This fruit also contains Vitamin C. Chickens do not usually need this vitamin. That is because they could produce it on their own. They could make it themselves under normal conditions, that is. They have trouble making it when they are under heat stress.
As you can see, you can give your chickens some extra watermelon during the summer season.
To make it an even better treat, you can freeze the watermelon before giving it to them. This method will maximize the cooling effect.
Can Chicks Eat Watermelon?
We have already discussed that the adults could eat watermelon. Furthermore, we have also tackled its health benefits to your older critters. So, could you also give it to your baby chicks?
Yes! You could let the chicks have some watermelon, as well. But you should only give them the flesh. Chickens have great digestive systems. However, the digestive system of your chicks is not yet that developed to handle all sorts of food.
Furthermore, make sure you only give them a few bites. As much as possible, the chick should remain on starter feed until the 6th week to grow strong and healthy.
Things to Keep in Mind When Giving Your Chickens Watermelon
As we have said earlier, the watermelon should remain a treat. It cannot be part of the staple diet of your chickens or replace their water supply.
The watermelon is rich in water. Because of that, you can expect the stool of your chickens to become watery. It is nothing to worry about if it came on after some watermelon treats. It should go back to normal once you withdraw the fruit.
If your chickens have a constipation problem, you can give them a good amount of rind along with the flesh. This part contains fibers that should help.
We do not see a moldy watermelon often. But it could happen. In that case, you should avoid giving it to your chickens. As a general rule, you cannot hand anything that has mold to the chickens. Mold could be dangerous and harmful to the little guys.
Can chickens eat watermelon?
Yes! We doubt they could eat a whole watermelon in one go. But it is one of the few fruits that render all parts edible to the little ones. There are many treats that you could offer to your chickens. However, watermelon is one of the best fruits.
Do you want to know more about chicken treats? You can head over to our chicken feeding tips to know more about treats and other things that might help you in your chicken-raising journey.
You can directly interact with other chicken handlers here to get tips and tricks. (Bonus! You can also check this extensive list out.)