Yard bugs

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Erin K, Aug 4, 2011.

  1. Erin K

    Erin K Chirping

    Aug 3, 2011
    So we got our chickens a few days ago. We love them bunches and they are super sweet, but I have a question:

    They are finding all sorts of bugs in the yard. Hurray! But I don't even know what some of this crap they are eating is. Will they eat anything harmful to them? I mean I know we have spiders and stuff, will/can they eat those? Do chickens ever get bit by dangerous spiders? I'd love it if they just ate all those spiders. (we have widows, they are not where we keep the chickens, but I wonder if the chickens will go over and eat them)

    Anyone else surprised to discover how many bugs your lawn had? We are just in a normal subdivision, small lot and all, and the chickens are finding all sorts of good things. (I guess good?)

    Thanks for your insight. I tend to think they will just be fine, and honestly what can I do if I didn't want them to eat certain bugs anyhow but I do worry about them.

  2. ECBW

    ECBW Songster

    Apr 12, 2011
    No point worrying. When they free range, who know what they eat.

    Some of mine eat ants some don't. I have heard of japanese beetle epidemic but seeing only a few in my yard, much less than before the chickens. Maybe the chickens have something to do with it.

    I would like to add roly poly (aka pill bug, woodlouse) to the list. I have not seen my birds eating stink bugs, but stink bugs have seldomly been seen lately, hmmm. The birds love to chase moths and eat them.
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2011
  3. LegginMF12

    LegginMF12 Songster

    May 2, 2011
    Yucca Valley
    My chickens will go for anything that moves, except stink bugs. In the last week I have seen them with one of those big black wasps with the orange wing (a tarantula wasp?) and a scorpion. I have read other posts where other peoples chickens eat stink bugs. My chickens will eat the heck out of the medium sized black ants but won't touch the big red ants or the little tiny red ants (piss ants?) They had a feast the other day when it rained and the termites were swarming. It was pouring rain and they were running around the yard gulping them as fast as they could. They will just about eat anything and I have never seen a chicken drop dead from free ranging.
  4. bloom_ss

    bloom_ss Songster

    Jun 23, 2011
    Spokane Valley, WA
    My chickens just feasted on a nest of earwigs today. They were so funny going crazy over those bugs! I was afraid they would get pinched or something, but they seemed just fine after they finished eating them all. I think they will eat just about any bug...although I am sure some chickens are more picky than others.
  5. Erin K

    Erin K Chirping

    Aug 3, 2011
    I have half a mind to just set them down wherever I know there are bugs. [​IMG]

  6. dbounds10

    dbounds10 Songster

    Mar 15, 2011
    Fort Worth, Tx
    mine wont eat ants and I wish they would but they eat everything else. They even found a baby grass snake in a pile of leaves the other day and chased each other around playing tug of war until it was in pieces! [​IMG]
  7. chi-rn

    chi-rn Chirping

    Jun 11, 2011
    My girls go on a cricket safari every evening when I come home from work. We have cement blocks and plant pots around the yard. I lift them up to reveal delicious treats. They go wild! Then, they go running to the next block before I can get there. But, they don't eat roly poly bugs!
  8. BrynnRDH

    BrynnRDH In the Brooder

    Mar 10, 2011
    Everytime I pick up their waterer to fill it up there are usually a few earwigs underneath it. They love eating them!
  9. hannakat

    hannakat Songster

    Jun 5, 2010
    Beaver County, PA
    I have one hen that walks completely around the house and then the garage looking for bugs on the foundation. It's really cool. Mine LOVE stink bugs and will eat them by the hundreds when we find them inside a tarp or box in the shed. Makes me wish I could have more chickens...just to patrol for stink bugs this fall!!!

    They don't seem interested in a fly...maybe they learn that they can't catch them? Mine aren't interested in ants either. That's okay cause their stink bug fascination makes them worth their weight in gold! DH thinks we should rent them out as exterminators. [​IMG]

  10. stoopid

    stoopid Chicken Fairy Godmother

    Aug 3, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    just be careful you or your neighbors DO NOT use pesticides of any kind. Any bug is good to snack on, that's what they do.

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