can chickens over eat sunflower seeds?

newchicks

Songster
11 Years
Sep 13, 2008
123
0
119
KANSAS
During the winter months we feed the song birds that stay around sunflower seeds. My concern is that of course the song birds spill a lot of seeds out of their feeders, and I'm sure my 2 girls will discover these extra treats. Can they over eat the seeds. Could they get sick or too fat from them? Or should we not feed the song birds anymore. Thanks all!!
 

Godsgrl

Ostrich wrangler
12 Years
Aug 27, 2007
1,992
21
211
at the zoo usually
Oh heavens. yes, they can eat sunflower seeds! And they love them too! They are very good for laying hens, something to do with helping them lay eggs. Actually, I am glad sunflower seeds are good for chickens, because mine love them so very much!
 

gritsar

Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!
12 Years
Nov 9, 2007
28,906
237
421
SW Arkansas
newchicks if at all possible feed your song birds as far away from where your chickens live as possible. Not because they'll overeat, but because wild birds carry disease that can passed on to chickens.
I love the song birds and still feed them now that I have chickens. I just feed them in a location the chickens rarely frequent.
 

Bugdude

In the Brooder
11 Years
Sep 9, 2008
49
2
32
Sunflower seeds are actually listed on the treat chart here. My girls love them. They are supposed to help them with the egg laying altough I have yet to see an egg at 24 weeks. I normally give them the black oil seed, since the white sunflower seems soo big for their beaks.. They gobble it all up every time.
 

newchicks

Songster
11 Years
Sep 13, 2008
123
0
119
KANSAS
Oh Wow, I'm so grateful that you mentioned that the song birds can carry diseases. It hadn't occured to me, so I'll so that. Either we won't feed them or we'll find a different place. The 2 girls have the run of the back yard, and are up at our back door frequently...looking for treats. We feed the song birds just off the patio at the back door. So it's descision time...song birds or "the girls", no contest. Thank you:D
 

gritsar

Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!
12 Years
Nov 9, 2007
28,906
237
421
SW Arkansas
Quote:I'm not sure how big the risk is, but there is a risk. It is impossible to keep wild birds completely away from your chickens. About the best you can do is like I said, find an area that your chickens don't frequent to feed the wild birds.
 

CarolAnn

Chirping
9 Years
Aug 23, 2010
381
3
99
Kansas
I give BOSS (black oil sunflower seeds) during winter for the extra protein that help keep them warm. I can't afford to give it year round, and not sure they need it when they can forage in the grass during spring, summer and fall. Once cold weather starts to set in I'll be getting it out.
 

CarolAnn

Chirping
9 Years
Aug 23, 2010
381
3
99
Kansas
Here's a duck question fer ya. If I let my ducks out to wander the yard during the day are the likely to eat my petunias and other annuals in my flower beds and pots? Or my lavender for that matter? If so I won't be letting them out to roam. That's the reason I stopped letting my chickens free range in the evenings. I really wanted to let the duckies out when I am at home.
 

Tlawler

Hatching
7 Years
Jul 21, 2012
6
4
7
Can chickens eat all kinds of sunflower seeds? In my big field I planted about 600 sunflowers this year, all types but mainly mammoth. I'm now cutting and drying the seeds for next year's planting and some just for human snacks, but I'm guessing that I'll have plenty over the winter for the chickens if it's ok for them. Have barred rock hens (10), got them around March 2nd at a few days old, and in late August I'm getting on average about eight eggs a day (today was 13, though some were probably from yesterday)
 

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