Wild Cherrys. Are they deadly?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by atvrider, Jun 22, 2010.

  1. atvrider

    atvrider In the Brooder

    I just noticed the other day that there is a wild cherry tree right over top of my brand new run! The tree is producing fruit and is prob about to drop its fruit. Ive heard the storys of livestock eating the leaves and dieing but i dont know about the fruit vs. my chickens? Will it kill them,hurt them, or can they enjoy them? Does anyone have any advice to what i should do?
  2. Jeeper1540

    Jeeper1540 Songster

  3. Morgan7782

    Morgan7782 Dense Egg Goo

    Mar 22, 2010
    Sacramento CA
    YAY something I can answer!! Cherry bark is poisonous when damaged. I have a cherry tree in my yard that sprouted a baby in my chicken pen and they LOVED the leaves. I cut the baby cherry tree down though because I learned about the cherry bark. I did not cut the big one. However, the chickens do love cherries from the big one and I have not seen any ill effects from them eating the cherries, though they prefer the ones sold at intersections haha.

    Adding: My cherry tree sits right above my pen as well, but the truck is outside the pen. When my girls free range oddly enough they no longer eat the leaves.. at least of the adult tree.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2010
  4. RuffledFeathers

    RuffledFeathers In the Brooder

    Jan 30, 2009
    Issaquah, WA
    I also have wild cherries- AKA bird cherries or sour cherries- above my run area. Between the robins and blue jays and chickens there is not much left. They are small, hard, and horrible to eat when judged by a human palette, but the feathered creatures go NUTS! Those trees sprout up everywhere and I have never heard of any poisonous elements to them.
  5. kayri

    kayri Songster

    Jul 6, 2007
    if they were, I think there would be dead birds everywhere.
  6. atvrider

    atvrider In the Brooder

    ok thanks everyone! im really glad i dont have to cut that tree down now.
  7. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Songster

    Oct 31, 2008
    Wild cherries in the NE section of the country are also known as Choke Cherries. The cherries are tiny little things that grow in clusters. There is such a thing as chokecherry jelly for those patient enough to pick that many!
    As for danger: wild cherry leaves are deadly WHEN WILTED! Dried, they are ok; fresh they are ok. When in the wilt stage just a few can kill a large animal. I never heard anything about the bark being dangerous. These trees are most dangerous in a pasture after a storm. If you have them and livestock on your property, please check them after storms so no limbs are broken.

    NYREDS Crowing

    Jan 14, 2008
    Back in my Hippie, back to nature days I used to make a cough syrup from cherry bark. I just checked & I'm not dead.

    ETA- I've had goats eat the bark off young cherry trees as high as they could reach. Didn't seem to harm them.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2010
  9. Morgan7782

    Morgan7782 Dense Egg Goo

    Mar 22, 2010
    Sacramento CA

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by