would these be safe for my chickens?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by nightshade, Mar 11, 2009.

  1. okay so I am getting 15 Shadblow Serviceberry trees from my local ag / conversation office next month. I was wondering if the berries would be safe for my chickens or should I not plant any near the new run? It says in their flier that they have been know to attract 40 different wild birds which has me really excited. They are tiny saplings and I still have to find out how fast the grow but they have be really excited. Anyone know anything about them?
  2. AK_Button_Mama

    AK_Button_Mama Songster

    Dec 30, 2008
    Wasilla, Alaska
    I eat service berries here in alaska but I dont know if it s called shadblow? good luck
  3. dixiechick

    dixiechick Songster

    Never heard of them, but I would think if it's good for wild birds that it would be good for chickens. ??? Sorry, I'm no help! [​IMG]
  4. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Keep us informed. Anything to cut down on the feed bill is good.
  5. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Crowing

    Jul 8, 2008
    Fleetwood, PA
    I believe that all serviceberries are edibile by humans, so I would say they would be OK for chickens. I planted my first serviceberry tree and two bushes last year and they are delicious!! (the berries, not the trees!)
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    If you call your county extension agent, you'll get a real good answer. I personally think it serviceberries would be a great treat for chickens, but your county extension agent would know. And your tax dollars are paying them to answer questions like these.

    And I agree with Cindy and Dixiechick's logic. I'm mainly posting this to push asking your extension agent these type of questions and please, if you learn something like this, post it so we can all learn.
  7. Here's my two cents: The tree will likely be good for your birds...call the ag person to verrify...but the migrating flocks of wild birds the serviceberries will attract will not be good for your flock in terms of spreading parasites. Just a caution.
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Oh, I figured you got them for pies as much as anything, lol -- yes, they make good pies and are also entirely safe for your chickens. Your chickens will never GET any of them, however, because the wild birds will eat 99% of them (unless you net the trees) and you will eat the remainder yourself [​IMG]

    There are a couple species (and some hybrid cultivars but that's probably not what you've bought) but they're all roughly alike in all respects other than mature height. They grow maybe a foot or two a year when young (if happy), slow down as they get bigger, have nice smoothish grey bark, beautiful if short-lived flowers in spring and usually good red-orange leaf color in the fall. It will take a while for yours to get to a good size -- protect them from deer and rabbits as they are a prime browsing target! -- but they are really nice shrubs/trees and you will like them [​IMG]

    Have fun,

  9. thebritt

    thebritt Songster

    Mar 5, 2009
    Humboldt County
    No problem. I wish I had a bunch of serviceberry trees (I just have one - a native to N. CA.). Unless your chickens are confined to a small area with toxic plants and no food, they are unlikely to eat poisonous plants. I even discovered nightshade growing near the coop (they only sleep in the coop - they're free-ranged on 2 acres) with berries and all - I guess they knew better (good thing)! The nightshade has, of couse, been eliminated.

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