Table of Contents
- Is Watermelon Good for Chickens?
- How to Serve Watermelon to your Chickens
- Parts of Watermelon that you can Feed your Chicken
- How to Treat Chickens with a Watermelon
- Why is Watermelon a Healthy Treat for your Chicken?
- Things to Remember when Feeding Watermelons to the Chickens
Watermelon is a refreshing and delicious fruit. There are several health benefits of eating watermelon for both human beings and chickens. Chickens love to be treated, and they get excited whenever they are treated nicely. So the big question is can chickens eat watermelon?
Yes, chickens can eat all watermelon parts such as rinds, seeds, flesh, and vines because it is safe for them. Watermelons are good for chickens to quench their thirst during summer when the weather condition is very hot. Chickens love watermelon because it is made up of 93 percent water that helps your chickens with hydration.
Chickens can eat the whole watermelon because they like to peck it away in small bits.
Is Watermelon Good for Chickens?
Watermelon is a nutritious and yummy treat for your chickens. That’s why they should eat it. Now that you know the significance of feeding your chicken with watermelon supplements, continue reading to understand the benefits of watermelon:
1. Watermelon Helps your Chicken to Cool Off During Hot Summer
Although your chickens can withstand some variations in hot temperature, they cannot sweat. They cool their bodies in various ways, such as flapping their wings to tap some air and burrowing themselves in the soil to reduce excessive heat.
Both cooling methods are not good enough to maintain their body temperature and keep them comfortable. Therefore, you can give them slices of watermelon as a treat to help them cool their body during the hot day.
The watermelon structure makes it deflect excessive heat and maintain its content at low temperatures to keep your chickens cool. Therefore, this is how watermelon can keep your chickens comfortable during hot summer.
2. It Improves your Chickens’ Health
Watermelon is packed with massive nutrients required by both human beings and animals to stay healthy. Fibers are the nutrients in the watermelon and can help your chicken enhance their digestive system and add some bulk to their stools.
Your chickens can enjoy the general well-being due to a healthy digestive system. This results in enhanced egg and meat production. This is a delicious treat, so you should feed them this fruit in moderation.
3. Rehydrates your Chickens
Chickens always get dehydrated when subjected to hot weather variations. During this time, your chickens tend to lose a great amount of water in the form of vapour, especially when breathing out. Therefore, please provide them with adequate water by placing it in a strategic location.
Another great alternative method to keep them hydrated is to feed them watermelon. Apart from the essential nutrients, watermelon has a lot of water that can keep your chickens healthy. It replenishes water lost in the form of vapour due to hot weather.
4. It Uplifts the Mood of Your Chickens
Just like human beings, animals also display different types of moods depending on the situation. The moods of chicken depend on several factors such as happiness, feeling sad, and moodiness. This can greatly affect the egg-laying process as well as meat production.
So to uplift the emotional state and the mood of your chicken, cut the watermelon into small pieces and feed them. It is a nutritious treat for your birds, and they can feel stress-free and more relaxed for quite a long time. Nevertheless, their egg production improves greatly to your amusement.
How to Serve Watermelon to your Chickens
Watermelon is a fantastic summer treat due to its high-level water content. Sometimes chickens find it challenging to get hydrated. If you plan to serve your chickens’ watermelon during hot summer, you must cool it down in the fridge if you got one. Then cut it into small slices.
Please don’t remove the skin or the seeds because they will munch that too. Some farm owners always serve their chickens with watermelon soup, but it does not change the water contents, and it is also unnecessary.
You can always do this if you want to treat your chickens differently. Don’t overfeed them, because they can get bored very quickly. You can feed a flock of 8 to 10 chickens using one small watermelon. And if they are extremely dehydrated, they can feed on it much faster.
Parts of Watermelon that you can Feed your Chicken
The chickens can eat every part of this fruit as a treat, and this is a good thing about it. Some parts of the fruit are more delicious than others. Therefore, let’s take a look at the parts of watermelon that your chicken can eat in more details:
1. Watermelon Seeds
The digestive system of an adult chicken is perfectly developed to process watermelon seeds. They can comfortably digest the seeds without any problem, unlike some of your pests such as dogs, sheep, cats, and goats. So chickens can feed on most seeds of scoop the centre watermelon flesh for them.
2. Watermelon Flesh
This is the yummy part of this fruit, and it is most favourite for most animals, human beings included. Chickens like watermelon flesh because it is great both in flavour and water content. Apart from chickens, goats and horses always enjoy the fleshy part as a treat.
3. Watermelon Rinds
This part of the fruit is not tasty but is the safest for your chickens to feed on. The rind contains more fiber, and it has more potassium content. Therefore, your chickens can eat the watermelon rind but not the whole of it.
The outer wall is thick, making it difficult for baby chicks to tear off the pieces. That’s why they can eat all parts of the fruit but leave the rind. So you need to cut the rind into small pieces for the baby chicks to eat.
4. Watermelon Vines and Leaves
If you have ever planted a watermelon plant in your farmyard, you understand that its leaves and vines are greatly safe for your chickens to feed on. But you should be cautious of pesticides sprayed on the plant. Therefore, feed the chickens with vines and leaves from your garden, and if only you are sure they are free from pesticides.
If you doubt the status of watermelon vines and leaves, then rinse them thoroughly before your chickens eat them. Do not make the mistake of feeding them the fruit and leaves simultaneously; they will ignore the leaves and vines.
How to Treat Chickens with a Watermelon
Watermelons are the most excellent for hydration because they contain high water content and numerous healthy nutrients. The green rind and delicious flesh are also the perfect healthy option for your chicken. So you should implement the following ideas in treating your hens:
- Frozen watermelon block: Slice one small or medium-sized watermelon into tiny pieces. Please put them in a bowl, fill it with water and then freeze the cubes. Feed your flock with a frozen watermelon during the hot days.
- Vine salad: A vine salad is a combination of vegetables such as cucumbers and carrots, watermelon fruit, leaves, and vines. Mix them thoroughly and treat your flock to nice feed.
- Cool watermelon soup with mint: Mix watermelon flesh, seed, rind, mint, and ice, then blend them until they are smooth. Pour the melon soup in a bowl and watch your chickens enjoy the treat. The soup enables your flock to stay cool and comfortable.
Why is Watermelon a Healthy Treat for your Chicken?
Watermelon is a healthy treat that contains numerous nutrients that your flock requires for growth. Some of these nutrients include Vitamin C, vitamin A, useful antioxidants, and vitamin B6. It has several trace elements such as lycopene, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, thiamine, folate, and riboflavin.
Melon contains higher lycopene contents than other fruits, so all these nutrients play a huge role in your chickens’ health. Ripe watermelon good nutritional values, especially when its flesh turns from white-pink into deep pink.
A ripe watermelon is good for the flock in terms of nutrients. The level of lycopene and beta-carotene increases in watermelon if the flesh is white. When the melon ripens, the level of antioxidants increases greatly. These are some of the reasons why watermelon is a healthy treat for your chickens’
Things to Remember when Feeding Watermelons to the Chickens
Several cases have emerged of chickens dying after eating watermelon rind. Although such a research report has not been validated, so till then, it is safe to treat your hens with a watermelon. Now that you have this information at your disposal, you should consider the following significant factors when feeding your chickens melon:
1. Provide Fresh Watermelon Rinds
Give your chickens fresh watermelon to prevent any problems related to health. Take a fully grown fruit and cut it into small pieces and feed it to the flock. Please dispose of the leftovers to your farm after they are finished feeding. Avoid feeding your birds a rotten watermelon; it can cause serious deaths to your flock.
2. Cut the melon into small pieces.
The greatest way to treat your flock is to cut the watermelons into small pieces. The chickens don’t have teeth for munching; rather, they pock the fruit and swallow it whole. That’s why it is reasonable to chop it into small slices to give your birds an easy time to eat. Large pieces can suffocate the hens, so you should avoid such incidents.
3. Remove the Hard Skin of the Fruit
The best way of feeding watermelon to your birds is peeling off the hard skin. Remove the hard part and then feed them the softer part of the watermelon. Removing the hard part facilitates proper digestion of the fruit.
4. Watermelon is not a Dietary Staple but a Treat.
Although the fruit is excellent for feeding your birds, you should limit the quantity consumed. It should be a diet for them; rather, it should remain a treat. You can treat your chickens by freezing watermelon cubes and slices together to make a good treat.
Chickens love to be treated nicely, and they enjoy eating watermelon. This is also the best way to get rid of the vines. Please don’t feed your birds rotten watermelons because they can cause severe health problems to your birds.
Watermelons do not contain any dangerous substance that can cause any damage, such as death to your chickens. It is advisable to feed them watermelons in moderation. Never consider this fruit as a staple diet for chickens; it’s a treat.
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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Can baby chicks eat watermelon?
Yes, your baby chicks can eat watermelon, but you should moderate the number of melons you feed them. The baby chicks’ crops are not fully developed, so limit them from eating the fruit flesh, but not the rinds or seeds. You should feed the adult chickens the seeds and rinds.
Can chickens eat watermelon rind?
Yes, they can, but only adult chickens can eat watermelon rinds. Your hens eat the rind after finishing the flesh and then start picking on the seeds. Chop the rinds into small pieces to improve digestion.
Can I feed my chickens with rotten watermelon?
Don’t you ever feed your chickens with rotten food, including watermelon. It is not worth the risk to feed them with rotten melon. The mold is known to cause health problems to your hens. It produces mycotoxins that are very harmful to your birds.
Can chickens eat watermelon seeds?
Adult chickens can digest watermelon seeds properly because their crops are fully-developed. Scoop some flesh when feeding your hens watermelon without removing the seeds. One thing you must avoid is feeding your baby chicks with watermelon seeds.
Can I use watermelons as the best alternative to freshwater?
No, you should not replace freshwater with watermelon. Watermelon is a treat, so it is not the best alternative. This shows that water is fundamental in every situation, irrespective of what you feed your birds.
The Drawbacks of Chickens Eating Watermelon
Watermelon has a lot of water content, meaning that if their stool gets relatively runny, they eat too much of it. Certainly, this is not a health problem, but you should be very careful when feeding your hens, the melon.
The hens can likely eat all the watermelons; therefore, you should ensure that the fruit does not rot. The rotten melon always attracts pests that can affect them. Your hens can get sick if they nibble on the rotten watermelon.