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Free Range Chickens & Poisonous Plants

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by nwgirl, Jun 25, 2009.

  1. nwgirl

    nwgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 27, 2009
    Everett, Washington
    My lawn is riddled with creeping buttercup and I've noticed some of my chickens eating it while munching on the grass. There's 5,000 square feet of the stuff! What can I do??? Anyone have any advice? I realize getting rid of it would be the best option, but I'm not sure how to get rid of it.

    How do the rest of you deal with free ranging chickens and poisonous plants? Do you just get rid of the plant?
     
  2. briana1975

    briana1975 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 23, 2009
    Carleton Mi.
    Mine free range in the afternoon and after reading the list of bad plants I was a little afraid to. I do notice the chickens will try a little nip of everything but won't keep eating the things they don't like. When I first started letting the chickens out in thier yard they loved all the worms. LOVED THEM. After about a week most of them had cocci. Got the lot treated everyone is ok. But now you can't get anyone to eat worms. Not one of them will eat them. They are smarter than we think.

    But now they like baby frogs.[​IMG]
     
  3. JohnL11935

    JohnL11935 Chillin' With My Peeps

  4. cybercat

    cybercat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Greeneville, Tn
    This is the problem with those toxic plant lists they are not correct. What I mean what is the amount that has to be digested to be toxic. Also what is toxic for one animal is not for another. If your chickens are doing OK before you found out about that list then I would not worry so much. It means it is not as toxic to chickens. If you wish to get rid of it anyways because it is invasive then do it by least offensive way you can because of your chickens.

    Know if you use roundup they have to be kept out of that area for awhile. At least a week or more till the plants die and are removed. You do not want chickens eating plants that have absorbed roundup. That would be Toxic.

    If you mow the area before the buttercup flowers and fetilize the law at the right time of the year. You should be able to choke it out that way. Again chickens must be kept out with fertilizer on the ground till it is washed in. Grass can take a real short cut but weeds can not. If you mow at the right time they will die and not produce for next year. This is a weekly mow for some till things are under control again. Fertilizing is ket here as the grass needs to fill in where the weed are and choke them out. BUT you can only do that certain time of the year or you will burn your lawn. Talk with a lawn expert for how to handle your sistuation best. It will save you time and money in the short and long run. Good Luck.
     
  5. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    SW Arkansas
    I've been letting mine run around outside since they were 2 1/2 weeks old. Now as adults they go anywhere they want on 80 acres.
    I have yet to have a chicken poisoned from eating something they shouldn't have and believe me, the so-called poisonous plants are here - along with the mushrooms.
    They don't eat them.
    I don't add poisons to my lawn.
    ETA: My garden area, the chickens main area, was full of buttercup this spring. No problems.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2009
  6. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Personally, I'd be much more worried about the residues from chemical weed treatments than the danger from plants growing naturally in my yard.
     
  7. nwgirl

    nwgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Everett, Washington
    Quote:Your chickens have good taste! In some countries baby frogs are a delicacy [​IMG]
     
  8. nwgirl

    nwgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 27, 2009
    Everett, Washington
    Quote:Thank you. I don't add poisonous chemicals to my lawn either. I am a bit relived to know they aren't going to kill over!
     
  9. Quote:I would really be afraid of the roundup try a natural spray read somewhere boil 1 cup salt until dissolved and add 1 cup of vinegar and some dawn dish detergent and spray, so will try that this afternoon when it cools off some. marrie
     
  10. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    I've never understood the concept of putting stuff like roundup on a lawn. Sure, you'll have the prettiest lawn around if it's not dotted with dandalions (sp?), but at the expense of exposing your family, pets and the earth to chemicals? No thanks, I keep the weeds.
    ETA: nwgirl, I once read the argument here on BYC that kept in a run chickens might get bored enough to try poisonous plants, but free ranging with lots of choices? Sorry, I just don't see it happening.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2009

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