Grubs are one of the most annoying backyard pests, so it’ll be welcome news that chickens will eat grubs if they find them. Grubs are also rich in nutrition, so they make for tasty and healthy (but gross) snacks.
What Are Grubs and Grub Worms?
There are lots of insects that are referred to as grubs, it’s almost a generic name for larvae. But true grub worms – those little white creatures that are curled up – are beetle larvae.
The most common grubs in the U.S. mature to become scarab beetles, Japanese beetles, masked chafers, and billbugs.
For anyone who cares about the quality of their lawns, grubs are a huge nuisance as they feed on the roots of grass and plants.
This is why, as I said in the opening comments, it’s a welcome discovery that chickens love eating them. In fact, most birds and lots of other small animals also enjoy snacking on them. (It’s a tough life being a grub!)
Is It Ok for Chickens to Eat Grub Worms?
Not only is it OK for chickens to eat grubs, but they’re also one of the most nutrient-rich bugs they’re going to find in your yard.
Plus, there’s that added bonus that they are removing this pest for you – it’s a win-win.
It’s hard to believe, but there are actually hundreds of species of grubs that are consumed by humans around the globe (yuk), they’re that nutritious.
Like most insects, grubs are rich in protein which is great for laying or molting hens. They also contain a range of other minerals.
Other Bugs and Insects Chickens Can Eat
Chickens will eat just about any insect that moves. Although, almost all chicken owners say their flock is good at instinctively knowing which bugs may be harmful.
Still, if you know you have any pests in your yard that might be harmful in any way, you should do everything you can to get rid of them just in case.
Here are just a few of the insects, bugs, invertebrates etc that are perfectly fine for chickens to eat:
- Grasshoppers and crickets
The list goes on…just about any little insect that moves is probably going to get chased down and gobbled up.
The best thing about chickens and bugs is that it gives them something to forage for, exercising their natural instincts.
Plus, if you’ve ever witnessed a chicken chasing a bug, you’ll know how much they enjoy it.
What Should Backyard Hens Eat?
While grubs and other bugs are great for chickens, there’s more involved to make sure your flock is getting all of their nutritional needs met – but don’t worry, it’s not difficult.
The bulk of a chicken’s diet comes from a quality commercial feed. Commercial feeds are available for chicks, young chickens, and fully mature chickens. Each being specially formulated to deliver all the nutrition they need.
Generally speaking, unless you have land rich in insects, chickens will get about 90% of their diet from their feed.
In addition to their feed, almost all backyard chicken owners love experimenting with giving their chooks different leftover foods.
They love vegetables, fruits, grains, and most table scraps. You should always check any foods you’re giving them for the first time are safe, but most human foods are fine.
On top of this, if you have the space to allow them to roam around free-range and find little treats like grubs, you’re going to have some happy and healthy chickens on your hands.
If you’re able to allow your chickens to roam free-range and they find grubs, great. If you find some yourself, throw them into their run if you want to see what excited chickens look like.
Chickens eating grubs is a win-win. You get free pest control services, and your chickens get a tasty and healthy snack.
Image credits – Photos by Michelle Tresemer on Unsplash and benmenting on Pixabay
What Kind of Beetle Does a Grub Worm Turn Into? – Animals.mom.me
12 Edible Bugs That Could Help You Survive – Backpacker.com