Are vine borers okay for chickens to eat?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by raymarkson, Jun 10, 2011.

  1. raymarkson

    raymarkson Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2010
    Georgia
    This morning I finally figured out what has been causing the demise of my zucchini plants- vine borers! I noticed that the plants looked like they were rotting at the base with yellowish looking saw dust near it. A quick internet search revealed that vine borers may be the culprit. So, I cut the vines open at the bases and found what seemed like dozens of these grubby things inside. Ugh... my plants were finished! On the bright side, my chickens adored the vine borers. I also found some of the adult vine borer beetles on the plants and the chickens ate those as well. In fact, they gobbled them up like candy, which brings me to my question. Is it ok for the chickens to eat these? I assume that it is because they eat so many other bugs in my yard. However, I just want to make sure and I know that the many knowledgeable people here can give me some info on this.
     
  2. A.T. Hagan

    A.T. Hagan Don't Panic

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    Aug 13, 2007
    North/Central Florida
    Yes, they are good hen treats.
     
  3. 1320

    1320 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 23, 2011
    You will seldom see an adult SVB on a plant, they are not beetles, they are fast flying, hard to see and kill moths that resemble a wasp. The beetles may have been squash (stink) bugs but the grubs in the vine are most likely SVB's. Sounds like you have a double infestation, yikes! Squash bugs will lay batches of small, reddish brown eggs on your leaves but the larve don't bore.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2011
  4. raymarkson

    raymarkson Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2010
    Georgia
    You're right! I just googled squash stink bugs and it's exactly the ugly bugs that I found around the bottom of my plants. I do have a double infestation... wonderful. I also read that I can plant garlic, marigolds or catnip to repel them. Anyway, my chickens ate vine borers and stink bugs, so I guess I should ask another question. Are stink bugs also okay for them to eat?
     
  5. gale65

    gale65 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Good to know because we get these every year. We just pull plants and replant after the first sign of them because there's pretty much nothing you can do about them (without using chemicals and maybe not even then). I hate the stupid things and will be happy to let the chickens torture them.
     
  6. 1320

    1320 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 23, 2011
    Quote:SVB traps from IPM will help control them but you are right, without harsh chemicals, eradication is nearly impossible. I think AJ assumed that you were referring to squash bugs, not sure but I can't imagine that stink bugs would be harmful.
     
  7. msviolaceous

    msviolaceous Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 16, 2011
    Did they manage to catch the bugs without hurting your plants? I may take our resident bug fiend out there this afternoon...
     
  8. raymarkson

    raymarkson Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2010
    Georgia
    I didn't let them in the garden. They always hang out by the garden fence waiting for me to throw them any bugs I find while I'm working in it. I usually do not let them in the garden until the end of the season, and then they can go in and scratch up and eat anything they want. Until then, they just stare longingly through the fence and eat any of the plants that dare to grow beyond it and wait for me to throw bugs to them.
     
  9. gale65

    gale65 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Once you see the vine borers the best thing to do is to pull the whole plant and burn it (or give it to your chickens).
     
  10. jomercer

    jomercer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Or you could salvage it by cutting a slit in the stem lengthwise where the borer is, extracting the borer, and burying the stem in the soil to reroot (still attached to the mother plant, though).
     

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