Chickens Won't Eat Produce Or Scratch?


7 Years
May 16, 2012
Hi! I have 4 , 3 month-old pullets ( 2 Easter Eggers, a Jersey Giant, and a White Leghorn) who are not interested in their organic scratch, any produce besides spinach ( I've tried, for example, strawberries, unpeeled bananas, cabbage, lettuce, brussel sprouts, broccoli and tomatoes) . All they will eat is their organic pullet pellet feed, cut grass, spinach, and earthworms my husband has to unearth in their chicken yard everyday. Is this normal, or do I just have weird chickens?!
My free-ranging girls wouldn't eat anything besides their food, fish, cheese, oatmeal, rice, bake goods and yogurt. They wouldn't touch any vegetables or fruit scraps. They did like scratch though and sunflower seeds. And they were really good layers. So, I guess they knew what they wanted to eat. My new chicks like free-range and like scratch, bread and their food so far.
I found for my 5 week olds that if I cut everything up into smaller pieces they were more apt to try it. Big chunks seem to scare them. Now they eat lots of stuff and they get really excited to see me cause I come with treats.
I haven't tried any of the things your hens like, so maybe I will just keep trying new things and find out if they like them. For some reason I thought fruits and veggies would be a given. Today was a no to apples. I tried the black oiled sunflower seeds and they didn't like them either. Funny, they will fight and steal earthworms out of each others beaks though, so go figure....maybe they will like cooked spaghetti as a treat! Thanks for getting back to me, I appreciate it!
First time I offered my 8-week old pullets BOSS, they just looked at them. Second time them they were still hesitant, but ate them by the end of the day. Now they gobble them up! I find mine are unsure the first time they are introduced to something; it takes two or three offerings before they start eating something. Exception is junebugs; those they took to right away!
Just a thought, but do they have access to grit? Maybe those things they won't eat, they can't because they can't chew them?
My chickens are about 7 months old now and they are very picky about their treats too! About the only thing they gobble down are potato peelings, carrot peelings, blueberries, lettuce, grass clippings, Cheerios and mealworms.

They will eat a few strawberries, green beans, stale bread, BOSS, and eat everything out of the scratch except the millet.

The things I've had to go into the run and cleanup because they refuse to eat is, brussel sprouts (don't blame them), bananas and apples.

I still have a long list of things to try yet.
When my girls were that young I had to cut all their treats into bite sized pieces and serve them on a plate. They wouldn't eat anything in big pieces or off the ground.

Somewhere down the line though they got alot less picky and started eating off the ground and pecking things down to size. They have a couple of favorites now, in the summer they get excited for cold watermelon rinds and on the coldest days of winter I actually fix them bowls of oatmeal. They also enjoy plain air popped popcorn and bread. It's funny because my daughter has actually "trained" one of the birds to catch the popcorn! As far as produce goes, in addition to the watermelon, they like cantalope seeds and carrot tops, but not carrots themselves so much. They seem to like the grass and dandelions from the yard alot more than they like anything from my fridge.

Seriously, I'm glad to see this post because I just thought I had spoiled rotten birds.
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