Can Chickens Eat Avocado? Important Facts

When it comes to chicken’s diet, there is plenty of contradictory information out there. Undeniably, this leaves most novice poultry keepers in a fix on what to give or not. You should be aware that chickens feed on almost anything. Some foods may not do them good, but only countable items are fatal.

I’m pretty sure that you’ve heard avocado can be lethal to chicken. However, considering the immense health benefits of this fruit, you may wonder if it is true or not. Before throwing away the excess avocados in your home, take time to read the imperative guide below.

Should you Feed Your Chickens Avocado?

Avocado is a power-packed fruit that contains lots of healthy fats and other nutrients. Also referred to as the butter fruit or alligator pears, your chicken will benefit immensely from this superfood. Avocados are rich in monounsaturated fat, which helps in lowering bad cholesterol.

In addition, they are full of niacin, riboflavin, potassium, calcium, fiber, magnesium, and vitamins B6, K, E. Not to forget that they also provide Omega 3 fatty acids, beta carotene, and lutein. On that note, we can all agree that avocado is one food item that should never be missed in a chicken’s diet.

Nevertheless, some parts of avocado can be toxic to your birds. For instance, the skin, seeds, leaves, and barks contain an element known as persin, poisonous to poultry.

What Happens If My Chicken Eats Avocado?

As mentioned above, high levels of persin can be dangerous for your chicken. What is persin, and how toxic is it? Persin is a fungal oil-soluble compound almost similar to fatty acids. Chicken reacts differently to a persin exposure. That way, it becomes nearly impossible to pinpoint the precise amount likely to cause issues with your birds.

All in all, older and weaker chickens are more likely to suffer the aftermath. Even in small doses, avocado can cause apathy labored breathing, heart rate, unrest, weakness, and other symptoms. Although other domestic animals like dogs and horses face an almost similar experience with persin, chicken suffers the most because of their tiny anatomy.

Still, this information should not deter you from giving your chicken some avocado treats. All you need to do is prepare it well and remove the parts that can make your chicken sick.

Will Avocado Kill a Chicken?

Some people swear that avocado can never kill a chicken. It requires enormous levels of persin to kill a chicken. Please note that leaves are the most toxic part of an avocado. Therefore, by all means, never place them near the chicken coop.

Given the nutritional benefits of avocado, you should not eliminate them from the chicken’s diet. Instead, remove the pit and skin before feeding your birds. Be extra cautious when removing the skin and ensure no skin pieces are left on the avocado flesh.

The safest method is to scoop off the flesh with a spoon. Avoid digging deep on the avocado and leave a layer of flesh on the skin. Bear in mind that an unintentional scrape can shovel some toxicity from the peels. Thus, if you want to go down the avocado way, avoid giving them to your chicken regularly. Simply, offer them as a snack or reward to your adorable birds.

Can Chickens Eat Avocado Skin and Seed?

Chicken’s intuitive nature sometimes saves them from food poisoning. It is no surprise that they may steer clear of food likely to cause them harm. In most cases, chickens rarely eat leaves, stems, or avocado stones/pits. Unfortunately, that is always not the case with avocado skin. In their attempt to indulge in the flesh, it is logical that they will peck on the skin first.

For this reason, peel the skin and remove the seed before giving the remaining part to your birds. In cases where your fowls consume the poisonous portions, do not fret much about it. Instead, consult a reliable vet right away before the issue escalates. All in all, if the chickens only ingested small portions, it is unlikely that they may get sick or die as a result.

What Other Foods Shouldn’t My Chickens Eat?

Like humans, fowls are omnivores and can feed on animal and plants foods. It is common for keepers to throw their kitchen scraps at their chicken. While there is nothing unhealthy about this practice, ensure that the food is not rotten or moldy.

Unknown to most people, chickens can also suffer from food poisoning. Therefore, if the food smells or looks awful, do not throw it in the coop. Below are other dangerous food items that you should never give your chicken.

– Chocolate

You must have heard about chocolate toxicity on dogs but not on chickens. With huge amounts of theobromine in chocolate, your birds will probably get sick even after negligible ingestion.

– High Processed Foods

Some experts discourage keepers from giving leftovers to their chickens. With the massive consumption of junk food in our homes, you may understand why it may not offer the much-needed nutrition to your chicken. In other terms, high processed foods contain unhealthy fats and sugar likely to cause a whole load of ailments to chickens.

– Green Potato Peels

Potato peels contain a toxic substance known as solanine. The content is more prevalent in green skins. If you have to give peels to your chicken, cook them first and limit the portions.

– Citrus

There is varying information on whether citrus is indeed harmful to chicken or not. The bright side is that poultry rarely touches any citrus product like oranges unless very hungry. So, this is one issue that you should not worry about much.

– Raw Legumes

Uncooked legumes have high levels of hemaglutin, which can make your chicken sick. Red kidney beans contain the most hemaglutin amongst all legumes. The good news is that cooked legumes have a minimal content of hemaglutin and are safe for your birds.

Bottom Line

For a long time, giving avocado to chicken has been a controversial topic. As a result, some farmers insist on including the fruit in their chicken’s menu.

Others would not dare even a tiny piece. We hope that this article sheds light on how to give your chicken avocado safely and other regular food items you should shun.

avatar James
Hey, I'm James, a hardworking homesteader for more than 30 years. I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment that comes from tending my flock. I've raised chickens and ducks for eggs and meat for many years. I also have experience with other poultry too. Learn more

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