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does flax need to be ground to feed it

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by abhaya, Nov 22, 2010.

  1. abhaya

    abhaya Songster

    Nov 5, 2010
    cookeville, tn
    I have a ton of flax seed I found in the barn. Do I need to grind it to feed it to the chickens?

  2. Lesa

    Lesa Songster

    May 28, 2008
    Upstate NY
    I am sure they would eat it whole- what I am not sure of, is the benefit. They claim humans can't use much of the flaxseed oil in unground seed. Not sure if that would be true with chickens. I grind mine (for human consumption) in a coffee grinder. Many people on here are feeding flaxseed- I am sure someone will chime in.
  3. abhaya

    abhaya Songster

    Nov 5, 2010
    cookeville, tn
    I have a small coffee grinder that I could use I just dont know if I need to grind it.
  4. Yes, you should. But grind it as you need it. Whole seed keeps for a while but ground feed spoils very quickly. Flax needs superior storage to avoid moisture getting to it. Be *very* sure it is not old seed, it could be spoiled already. I have heard that here are tiny amounts of cyanide in flax, which is released by moisture. It is certainly a good source of Omega 3 and I use it when I can get local flax for a reasonable source.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2010
  5. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I feed flaxseed whole in my feed, since I provide grit. They will grind it in their gizzard. I never see whole seeds in their poo.
  6. woodmort

    woodmort Songster

    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    If you're going to eat it, yes. For your chickens--no it'll last better unground and the grit in their gizzards will do the job.

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