Sunflower Seed Processing.

Couchie

Chirping
Mar 10, 2019
31
74
74
Albany, Western Australia
Hi my favourite chook site. In the chicken mix that I buy to go along with free range foraging, the black sunflower seeds are eaten first. For a few years I've grown sunflowers that produce black sunflower seeds.

However, the chooks don't like my homegrown seeds. Does anyone know why?

There seems to be a smelly oil coating on the homegrown seeds so I am wondering if that has something to do with it. Perhaps they needs roasting? Or picked and sundried?

Any thoughts appreciated,
 

cavemanrich

Addict
7 Years
Apr 6, 2014
18,600
67,757
1,317
Melrose Park Illinois
I give my chickens BOSS, and they wolf it down fast. I also give larger portions to my flock of squirrels.. I know squirrels are technically not a flock,,, but hate to call them a HERD. :gig
I purchase 50 pound bags, and it goes quite fast with my herd of about 20 squirrels. I of course do maintain feeding them year round,,,, because they do need to eat. During summer the rations are much smaller since there are other things for squirrels to eat. . Maybe that is the reason why the herd is soooooo BIG. :idunno
What I'm getting at here........ the seeds are dried, but not roasted. I know that some of the seeds the squirrels bury,,, do germinate, and sprout.

Maybe if your home grown seeds were dried, your chickens would munch on them well.

WISHING YOU BEST,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,:highfive:
 

Couchie

Chirping
Mar 10, 2019
31
74
74
Albany, Western Australia
that had crossed my mind too Silexian. Just because they look similar doesnt mean they're the same. It would be hard for the Pekin Bantams to get to them but we offered them one a few weeks ago and they weren't keen. Plus I think it is the same variety as last year and they weren't interested. thanks for your thoughts and info
 

EEforMe

Songster
Sep 5, 2021
1,040
2,432
231
In my experience chickens can somehow sense if sunflower seeds are empty. Seriously. Maybe your harvesting to soon? Wait until the sunflower is brown and the petals all fallen to harvest for chickens. For humans harvest them whenever, if you harvest them earlier they are smaller but have a fruitier flavor. I also think you might have the wrong variety. Mine go crazy for mammoth too.
Here are some mammoth seeds I’m saving for next year:
DA622BBB-4644-4EDA-AD8E-39E2246631C5.jpeg

Here are some that I saved for myself too munch on. I just boiled them in saltwater and dried them in the oven. They taste ok.
5B15EB67-43EB-4EA4-A8A4-87A27649E92D.jpeg
 

kerbotx

Songster
5 Years
Aug 29, 2016
424
867
231
Northeast Texas
You can actually use the sunflower seeds from the mix you purchase, I'd just sprout them out first, to be sure they'll grow. I've always thought chickens preferred Black Oil Sunflower Seeds, as they are smaller & get swallowed whole; save the striped ones for the squirrels, they'll def appreciate it :)
 

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