Chicken’s eat lots of things but can chicken eat potatoes? Whether it is healthy or not? In this guide we have explained all about potatoes as a treat for chickens.
Potatoes are the tubers of the plant Solanum Tuberosum, one of the many plants belonging to the family Solanaceae.
The potatoes got their names because of how they grow, from underground potato stems called stolons, and how they look similar to truffles.
Can Chicken Eat Potatoes?
Chicken can eat potatoes. Potatoes are an excellent source of carbohydrates and protein, which is why chicken needs them.
Without a certain amount of carbohydrates in their diet, chickens will have trouble gaining weight or maintaining it.
Can Chicken Eat Sweet Potatoes?
Yes, chickens can eat sweet potatoes. Chickens will eat just about anything but typically enjoy seeds and grains, greens, fruits, and vegetables.
Sweet potatoes are a healthy source of protein and other nutrients for your chicken, so feel free to share yours with them.
Warning: It is important to make sure any plant you give your chickens is pesticide-free, as ingesting pesticides can be poisonous for chickens.
The Health Benefits of Potatoes for Chicken
Potatoes are a staple part of many diets. They can be eaten as french fries or baked potatoes, and have been shown to have a wealth of health benefits for both humans and chickens alike. But giving them in moderation is most important.
Potatoes can help prevent water retention. Too much water weight is unhealthy because it prevents a chicken from being able to fly properly. The starchy carbohydrates in potatoes help to control this issue.
Water retention is the buildup of watery fluid in cells, tissues, and body cavities. The build-up may cause swelling or lead to a variety of complications such as high blood pressure or heart failure.
Potatoes are great because they’re low in sodium and contain lots of potassium, which helps flush out the water.
Potatoes are high in protein, low in fat, and contain very little cholesterol. When trying to lose weight it’s important to keep your calorie intake down while maintaining a healthy diet.
A baked potato is an excellent addition to any meal because it contains only around 100-120 calories per medium-sized potato. It also contains approximately 5 grams of fiber per 4 ounces.
Fiber helps control blood sugar levels by slowing down the rate at which food enters the bloodstream. Potatoes are also high in vitamin B6 which helps lower homocysteine levels, which can reduce inflammation throughout the body.
This increase in vitamins is great for chickens with egg or meat-related dermatitis.
Potatoes are high in beta-carotene which is converted to Vitamin A by the body. Vitamin A helps keep mucous membranes healthy and creates an important layer of protection that prevents infection.
It also maintains healthy eyes ensuring that chickens can see properly to navigate their surroundings, as well as helping support healthy beak growth.
Potatoes are rich in potassium which is a natural diuretic. This means that they can help remove excess fluids from your chicken’s body and reduce the strain on their heart from trying to pump an overabundance of blood.
Potatoes also contain iron, phosphorus, zinc, Vitamin C, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin B6, and folate. These nutrients all support your birds’ ability to produce eggs as well as fight off infection when they do fall ill.
Help them achieve this by using potatoes as an easy way to boost their health!
Also read: All about chicken scratch
Side-Effects of Potatoes for Chickens
Chickens can eat baked potatoes and have access to freshwater in a waterer. Don’t add salt or anything else to a potato before you give it to them. Salt should not be allowed in any quantity.
In addition, don’t feed your flock cooked or microwaved potatoes as they have been shown to cause digestive issues when consumed by other animals such as dogs.
Potatoes contain moderate levels of oxalic acid, a naturally occurring chemical that prevents absorption of calcium and reduces the availability of dietary iron.
When excessive amounts are consumed, symptoms include gastrointestinal irritation with nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and burning sensations around the mouth and throat.
However, proper usually destroy much if not all of the oxalic acid.
Which Part and How to Give Potatoes to Chickens?
Whole unpeeled potatoes, cut into 1″ chunks or sliced lengthwise can be fed daily. You can also feed potato skins that have been scrubbed clean of all dirt before feeding them to your flock.
Cooked potatoes are best mashed up in a bowl with some cooking oil, garlic salt, cooked egg yolk, crushed/dried liver pills, fish oil, or just about anything else your hens might like mixed in before serving it for breakfast.
This is an extremely nutritious treat they will go crazy over if you toss it on the floor of their run. Chickens have very limited eyesight and will not see well enough to discover it until they begin eating and pulling the mashed-up food onto their beak.
Put a couple of clean, unpeeled potatoes in the microwave for 5 minutes or so to soften them up. Allow them to cool before you remove their skins and feed them to your flock whole.
Make sure there are no green spots on the potato showing signs of rot, this can cause problems in your flock if they eat too much of it.
Once again, just mix some cooked mashed potatoes with other tasty treats before serving them to your flock. They’ll love anything that tastes well mixed into their favorite treat.
If you want more nutritional value than just plain mashed potatoes, add some cooked egg yolk to the mix for a big protein boost that even picky hens will eat.
You can feed your flock leftover baked potato but it should not be given in large amounts as this food item is rather high in phosphorus and low in calcium.
It’s sometimes a good idea to mash it up with some other ingredients before serving it to your hens.
How Many Potatoes Can You Give Your Chickens?
The recommended daily intake for chickens is between 500 to 1000 mg/kg, but the average whole potato contains around 742 mg/kg.
If you give your chickens a whole potato, they will be consuming more phosphorus than recommended. Please don’t let them gorge themselves on potatoes if they’re getting ready to produce eggs.
They also shouldn’t have too many of these treats throughout the week as too much of anything isn’t a good thing for any living being. A couple of slices or chunks roughly the size of a golf ball can be given per chicken daily.
Also read: Best egg laying chickens
Chickens can eat potatoes, they’re especially good at giving them mashed with some other ingredients for added taste and nutrition.
Potatoes are high in carbohydrates but low in fat and should not be used as the only source of dietary protein.
Keep portions small and limit their intake to once or twice weekly as this treat along with any others is high in phosphorus and contains no calcium.
If your hens become egg-bound by consuming too much phosphorus, you’ll probably find out about it one painful way or another.
If you want more nutritional value than just plain mashed potatoes, add some cooked yolk to the mix for a big protein boost that even picky hens will eat.
I hope you liked this informative guide on can chicken eat potatoes?