Dandelion flowers and greens... yogurt... at what age can they eat it?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Ringo71, Jun 19, 2008.

  1. Ringo71

    Ringo71 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 17, 2008
    Ohio
    My chicks are 5 days old and I'm itching to give them dandelions as a treat. I figure if I can get them hooked on them at a young age they might keep my yard clear of them as adults. lol

    Also, at what age is it safe to give them yogurt?

    Are there any other weeds that I could be introducing them to?

    I put a pan of dirt that I cooked in my oven to make sure I killed all the critters in the brooder. I've never seen anything get so excited about a little bit of dirt. lol I think they should have the grit they need to grind the stuff up, or maybe they just like eating dirt for the heck of it? haha
     
  2. NS2A

    NS2A Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Been feeding mine weeds and dandelions since 6 weeks. You're chicks are too young. And they get everything they need in their feed at this point, so they don't need the grit. yogart is fine though.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  3. Ringo71

    Ringo71 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 17, 2008
    Ohio
    I'm going to throw some dandelions in there right now and see what happens. For some reason I just can't wait to watch them devour dandelions!!! lol
     
  4. rooster0209

    rooster0209 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 7, 2008
    North Dakota
    my chicks are 4 weeks. They really love the clover thats growing in their run.
     
  5. BearSwampChick

    BearSwampChick Chicken Sensei

    Jan 10, 2008
    Marysville, OH
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    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  6. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

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    South Puget Sound
    I've been giving my chicks grit (purchased from the local Safeway & intended for canaries & budgies) since nearly day 1. They LOVE the grit and peck at it for long periods. Make sure you give your chicks grit early!
     
  7. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 19, 2007
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    Its fine to give them greens since they've had grit, but you should cut or chop the dandelions up with a knife or scissors so they are minced. It's good for them, but in small amounts at that age. Just give them enough that they eat up in an hour or so. It's not good to let them have access to decaying greens.
     
  8. BearSwampChick

    BearSwampChick Chicken Sensei

    Jan 10, 2008
    Marysville, OH
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    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  9. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    I give my chicks yogurt from the start - usually around day 3 or so when I know they are eating and drinking properly. Yogurt is a source of good probiotics. I am a believer that good nutrition is the basis for good health.

    It is a good idea to expose them at an early age to the soil they will be living on. Just a little clump and they will happily scratch through it and peck and play. It gives them something to do. If it has grass and stuff stuck in it they will greedily learn to eat and peck it. It won't hurth them to have some green to peck at.

    I used to be of the school that chicks needed chick starter and not much else to insure they get what they need nutritonally from their feed. They really do need to learn that the crumbles is their food and everything else is extra. For the most part I still am but I have relented a bit and introduce stuff a little earlier than before. Dandelion greens won't hurt them but if they eat too much they might get some green poops. Don't run to the ER forum if it happens. It is green from the dandelion greens. It is runny from being something new in their diets. They will eat the dirt too.

    Just don't give them too much initially. Chop it up. If you see bloated full crops take the stuff out.

    I make all of my chicks, ducklings and goslings a spinash and yogurt puree every single day for the first week or two. They then get it about once a week.

    Fresh cut grass is good for them too. I chop it up for the babies.

    Over the past 6 months I have been trying to give my chicks and chickens and other fowl a more natural diet and trying not to rely too heavily on commercial feeds. Man, it is a lot of work cuting grass and greens and keeping everyone with a full belly of bugs and worms!
     
  10. Ringo71

    Ringo71 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 17, 2008
    Ohio
    Well, they love to roll around in it. lol I haven't gave them yogurt yet, just a dandelion. I'll try cutting up the flower next time.

    I put a broiler pan full of baked dirt in my 5x4 brooder. I cooked it in the oven to make sure I killed anything that might be in it. They absolutely love it. In fact, they didn't move around much at all till I put the pan in there. They race around the cage back and forth through it. It's hilarious! lol

    I'm not sure why dirt would be a bad thing for them? Don't they have access to dirt when raised by their mothers outside? I guess they probably pick at greens too when mother hen takes them for walks?

    I'll be holding off on the yogurt. I thought that might give them the runs so I didn't even try it. lol They ran around with the dandelion playing what looked like keep away. I'll have to give them some clover tomorrow so I can watch the little chick games again.
     

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