Walnuts in the run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ARose4Heaven, Jan 31, 2011.

  1. ARose4Heaven

    ARose4Heaven Songster

    Apr 16, 2009
    Flippin, AR
    I have a huge black walnut tree. I picked up most of the ***!!! things last fall. After black hands from that, I am not about to try cleaning the nasty things. A lot of them are wormy anyway.

    I have a very muddy run where my meaties will be this spring. Would it be OK to put those walnuts in that run? I know not to just toss them in there loose, because meaties are prone to broken legs...but if DH runs over them (the walnuts, not the birds) with the tractor to press them into the soil would they be OK to firm up the soil and help with drainage? Are black walnuts harmful to chickens?

    I figure the birds will keep me from having a future walnut forest, and would enjoy any worms that come from the nuts.

  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Interesting question.

    I'm waiting for an expert to answer.
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    That's an interesting question. The tannins in black walnuts are antinutritional factors (they decrease the body's ability to absorb other nutrients) and walnuts contain juglones that can provoke severe reactions in horses and debatably in other livestock.

    In the absence of finding results of a study on this subject, or someone's reliable and lengthy-experience anecdotal experience, I think my own attitude would be this: I would not want my chickens eating lots of walnut husks, but I would not worry much about having old walnut husks (and the walnuts themselves) embedded/buried in the soil of the run, although I would keep an eye on things if I did that.

    But, use at your own risk, I think.

    GOod luck, have fun,

  4. ARose4Heaven

    ARose4Heaven Songster

    Apr 16, 2009
    Flippin, AR
  5. Cacciatore

    Cacciatore Songster

    Jan 19, 2011
    San Pablo, CA
    Wow! This is good to know. Thanks for posting it.

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