As a “superfood” with numerous health benefits and applications, you’re probably familiar with coconut oil.
Can chickens eat coconut oil? Chickens can eat coconut oil, yes. Not only do they love it and it makes for a nutritious snack, but they can also benefit from a lot of the health and wellness applications.
What Is Coconut Oil?
Coconut is an edible oil that’s high in saturated fats that have different effects on the body. It’s also high in MCTs, which are the compounds that are responsible for a lot of the known health benefits.
Although it’s been used thousands of years, coconut oil has seen a huge rise in popularity in recent years.
This has mostly been due to studies showing that it may boost heart health, it helps burn fat, can raise cholesterol, is great for a range of skin issues, and has some antimicrobial effects.
It also contains caprylic and lauric acid. Two compounds known to help strengthen the immune system. Pretty useful if you have a sick flock, or just want to help maintain good health.
Pretty amazing for a white paste that smells and tastes delicious!
Why Give Coconut Oil to Chickens?
There are a number of reasons why you should give coconut oil to chickens. Here are some of the reasons why backyard flock owners use it:
Treating wounds - If your chickens have picked up some small wounds, maybe due to a peck from a flock mate or scratched themselves, use a little coconut oil.
It has antibacterial properties and is often more effective than traditional treatments. Bacterias are becoming more resistant to traditional treatments, and in my opinion, you can’t beat a natural alternative.
Moisturizing - Chicken’s skin needs moisturizing too sometimes. A little oil on their feet in the winter will help insulate their little feet, and if they have any skin blemishes on their legs it’ll help with that too.
Stronger eggs - This isn’t something I’ve experienced myself. However, I’ve read a few stories from backyard owners that say introducing coconut oil helped resolve some egg-laying issues with their hens.
One owner said her hen was laying eggs with very weak shells. The other said eggs were breaking during laying. Both say feeding their girls coconut oil resolved this.
How to Feed Coconut Oil to Your Chickens
There are a number of ways you can feed coconut oil to your flock. Most chickens love it, so it will probably come down to what works best for you.
Try any of the following methods:
- Spooning out some small chunks and adding it to their feed. If you’ve never used coconut oil before, despite being an oil it has more of a wax-like consistency.
- Coating some of their favorite treats, such as fruits and vegetables with a little oil. Chickens don’t have many taste buds, so it’s not like it’s going to change the taste for them.
- Or, you could mix up a little superfood blend that’s going to be awesome for them. I know a lot of owners mix it with oatmeal and this simple recipe always goes down a treat.
Either way, as long as they’re getting some in their diet they’ll be benefiting from all the goodness.
In Summary - Can Chickens Eat Coconut Oil?
Chickens can and will eat coconut oil. Not only that, but it’s not just a superfood for us, there are loads of wellness benefits for chickens too!
From giving their immune system a boost, to helping improve the quality of their eggs and coats, every backyard chicken owner should at least give it a try in my opinion.
Anything as simple as adding a little coconut oil to their diet that has so many potential upsides and overall health benefits should not be ignored!