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Can chickens eat suet?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

I am wondering because I am thinking of making them a treat ball of some sort to keep them busy and entertained during the day when I am at work and the kid is at school.
I need something to make the corn, feed and seeds etc stick together in a "solid" ball. The one I am looking to buy for my horse is basically compressed sweetfeed with a bit more molasses. But will molasses be ok for the chooks??

ideas?

Proud wife, mom to one awesome daughter. Mom to furkids: 3 Cats, 3 Rabbits 2 parakeets and one Thoroughbred gelding. Chicken Mom to Vivian,Audrey, Mae,Natalie, Samantha, Ava, Bianca, Tori and Isabelle.

RIP Connor and Olivia
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Proud wife, mom to one awesome daughter. Mom to furkids: 3 Cats, 3 Rabbits 2 parakeets and one Thoroughbred gelding. Chicken Mom to Vivian,Audrey, Mae,Natalie, Samantha, Ava, Bianca, Tori and Isabelle.

RIP Connor and Olivia
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post #2 of 19

I don't know why they couldn't have suet. Molasses is a different story tho - it works as a laxative in chickens.  Maybe another BYCer can give you more info on the suet?

Speckled Sussex hens, Buff Orpingtons, Black Australorps, and beautiful backyard mutts including a bodacious roo named Spanky.

"What do we live for if it is not to make life less difficult for each other."   -George Eliot
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Speckled Sussex hens, Buff Orpingtons, Black Australorps, and beautiful backyard mutts including a bodacious roo named Spanky.

"What do we live for if it is not to make life less difficult for each other."   -George Eliot
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post #3 of 19

Well, I don't know about the suet.  It is fed to wild songbirds to help them survive the winter cold without their usual diet of insects.  But chickens have the benefit of regular, balanced and nutritious feed, plus the usual treats.  They probably don't need suet, but it might be given on really cold days as a treat... 

As far as using it as a binder for a homemade flock block, I don't know.  Hopefully someone who's better at avian nutrition will help out here.

post #4 of 19
Thread Starter 

no one out here, with this fast array of chicken knowledge can answer this question?

Proud wife, mom to one awesome daughter. Mom to furkids: 3 Cats, 3 Rabbits 2 parakeets and one Thoroughbred gelding. Chicken Mom to Vivian,Audrey, Mae,Natalie, Samantha, Ava, Bianca, Tori and Isabelle.

RIP Connor and Olivia
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Proud wife, mom to one awesome daughter. Mom to furkids: 3 Cats, 3 Rabbits 2 parakeets and one Thoroughbred gelding. Chicken Mom to Vivian,Audrey, Mae,Natalie, Samantha, Ava, Bianca, Tori and Isabelle.

RIP Connor and Olivia
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post #5 of 19

as a cold weather or winter treat i give mine a block of the suet/seed/berries you can get for 99 cents at agway or TSC. they'll pick at it, ignore it, then go back to it and it'll last a few weeks for them. i put it in a mesh bag that o nions come in and hang it from a nail in their coop on the  wall - that way they have to peck at it and it doesn't just flop on the floor and get pooped on.

post #6 of 19

I gave suet blocks to my girls last winter for entertainment as much as nutrition. They seemed to enjoy them. The peanut butter ones were their favorite.

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Tennessee State Rep for -> Belgian d'Uccle & Booted Bantam Club
NPIP #63-378

Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool.
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post #7 of 19

We save the suet for the wild birds, who aren't spoiled rotten and living inside a draft free environment. Too much fat (which is what suet is) is not good for chickens, and can cause health issues (just like in people).

We have used Purina Flock Block in the winter for our flock. It does contain molasses, but we haven't had any problems with our birds. I listed the ingredients here...

http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=94980&p=4

post #8 of 19

I don't have an array of knowledge about much of anything but I'd go with the molasses rather than the suet.

Suet is just fat. At least the molasses has some minerals and isn't as high in empty calories, calories, calories.

Here's an array of knowledge on food: USDA National Nutrient Database Just type molasses or suet in the search.

Steve

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post #9 of 19

I always gave suet mixed with wild bird seed for the other birds but never to the chickens.  This is a good question.  Any other feedback?cool

post #10 of 19

Googled suet and chickens cand came up with this.... it is aimed toward wild birds but has some good info.

http://www.natureskeepers.com/suet_vs_veg_fat.html

Speckled Sussex hens, Buff Orpingtons, Black Australorps, and beautiful backyard mutts including a bodacious roo named Spanky.

"What do we live for if it is not to make life less difficult for each other."   -George Eliot
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Speckled Sussex hens, Buff Orpingtons, Black Australorps, and beautiful backyard mutts including a bodacious roo named Spanky.

"What do we live for if it is not to make life less difficult for each other."   -George Eliot
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