Shrub or No Shrub???

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by gauthierpeeps, Jun 30, 2007.

  1. gauthierpeeps

    gauthierpeeps In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2007
    Draneville, Georgia
    I am very new at raising chickens. We have 3 big girls and 2 little girls that are still in a small crate in our garage. The big girls are outside in their pen/coop. We built a 8 x 8 x 12 fenced area with the coop inside. We included a Freesia and an Azalea inside the fenced area. The big girls have pretty much ate all the leaves off the Freesia and now are attacking the Azalea with a vengence. So much so that I am wanting my husband to dig it up and put it on the outside of the wire. My question is: Is it ok for them to have access to foilage? Will they stop or gorge themselves until they waddle? I appreciate any and all advice.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2007
  2. Yonaton

    Yonaton Songster

    Jun 28, 2007
    West TN
    I'd say take the shrubs out, if only because it'll give them more room. If they aren't dead yet from eating the shrubs, they probably won't die at all from it. It seems it'd be easier though to throw grass clippings or a little fresh green hay in for them once in a while and use something else for their shade on the outside of the run. This is what *I* would do, heh. YMMV.
  3. Dom'sHEns

    Dom'sHEns Songster

    Apr 2, 2007
    New Jersey
    I've Heard Azaleas are toxic to chickens! [​IMG] I would take them out there not going to thrive anyway....and better safe than sorry for the chickens! [​IMG]
  4. gauthierpeeps

    gauthierpeeps In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2007
    Draneville, Georgia
    Yes, the shrubs have been in there all along. They ate the Freesia leaves as high as they could. They have been eating the Azalea just up so they can get under it. It just seemed like yesterday they went at the Azalea with vengeance, more so than before. They have plenty of shade, but they like going under the bushes. I guess if they have eaten them all along like you said they aren't going to die. Are you sure they are toxic to chickens?? Thank you for the posts!
  5. cwrite

    cwrite Songster

    Mar 12, 2014
    Queensland, Australia
    You can find lists of plants that are toxic to chickens if you google it, although I've found discrepancies between lists I've looked at. I think some may have an accumulative effect so they don't keel over immediately. Personally, I think shrubs are great to have in the run & are somehow far cooler than provided shade. I'd leave them, but remove leaves up to the chickens reach if they are established and tall enough. The best advice I've seen is to grow the shrub higher than they can demolish and protect the roots with a bit of hard wire cloth pegged into the ground. I've managed to grow two rose bushes in my run by protecting them until they reached this stage.
    Here is one list, I have seen more comprehensive ones around though.

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