Raw Fish for Baby Chicks?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by gtaus, May 18, 2019.

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  1. gtaus

    gtaus Songster

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    I have read that chickens love fish. I live on a lake and have been fishing a lot this past week. After cleaning the fish, I plan on give my chickens the fish remains. Currently I am only feeding my 3 week olds chick starter and sand as grit. I have been burying the fish remains in the garden, but my first choice would be to let the chicks/chickens have them to eat. My question, are my 3 week old chicks at an age where I can start feeding them fish remains, or should I wait until later - or full grown? Thanks.
     
  2. Personally I would wait. It's easier to figure out what's going on with them if you keep their diet simple for the first several weeks. You will definitely get people who disagree with me!
     
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  3. gtaus

    gtaus Songster

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    Well, I am waiting. Just don't know how long to wait. Would also like to start introducing kitchen scraps when appropriate. For now, I am still burying the fish remains out in the garden....
     
  4. Folly's place

    Folly's place Free Ranging

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    I wouldn't add this to their diet, at least not now. Maybe much later?
    Are you having critters coming to dig up your rotting fish remains? This wouldn't be good, and especially if your pets get into it; botulism is very nasty, for example.
    Mary
     
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  5. imnukensc

    imnukensc Crowing

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    Baby chicks being raised by a momma hen in a free range situation would've eaten a lot more than fish. Yes, you can feed them bits of fish, kitchen scraps, etc. The caveat is to do it in moderation.

    Edit to add: "Sand" is not grit. Get them some chick grit.
     
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  6. GC-Raptor

    GC-Raptor Crowing

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    I give nothing but Medicated Start & Grow and Grit for 10 weeks.
    I am on my second Flock and have never given meat, fish or poultry scraps to my chickens. It is risky feeding in or near their pen. As it will attract predators. GC
     
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  7. gtaus

    gtaus Songster

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    Never had any problems with critters, or pets, digging up rotting fish remains in the garden. Been burying fish remains in the garden for years that way.
     
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  8. gtaus

    gtaus Songster

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    Thanks, that is what I was wondering. Moderation is the key. At this point, I would be happy just to introduce small bits of other food.

    I talked to the poultry "expert" at the farm store where I ordered the chicks. He told me just to use sand (I live on a lake) which is the same size as #1 chick grit and then when the chicks get older buy #2 grit. He has been raising chicks for 30+ years, this is my first year, so I went by his advice.
     
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  9. gtaus

    gtaus Songster

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    Well, I don't want to attract any predators. Good point. I am thinking that if I gave the chickens only what they could immediately eat, there would to nothing left to attract predators. I have no intention of leaving meat outside over night.
     
  10. CindyinSD

    CindyinSD Crowing

    I would cook the meat/entrails before feeding it for the same reasons we humans cook (or CAREFULLY inspect) any meat products we eat: Increased digestability and to destroy parasites & their eggs. Chickens can eat most things humans eat. Humans rarely eat raw entrails.

    Also, I’m not sure that chicks with a mama hen would be likely to be feeding on entrails—not that they’d refuse them, but more because it’s not generally the sort of thing one finds lying around all over the place.

    If you decide to feed the fish entrails, do remove the bits the chicks don’t eat before dark, as they will likely attract rodents.
     

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