The first time you wanted to get your baby chicks, you probably focused on the basics: choosing a breed, setting up a chick brooder, and their feeds.
Did you think about treats for baby chicks while you were researching this last process? Treats will help your baby chicks eat more nutritiously. They can also be entertaining for both your birds and yourself!
I can imagine how exciting it is to have baby chicks. You know they’re the cutest little buggers whether you have a few or a whole box full. One could easily spend hours watching them.
It’s adorable how they scratch and run around the brooder. Giving the chicks some treats and seeing them get excited about each bite must be one of your favorite things.
When you give treats to baby chicks, you want to make sure you’re offering them things that are healthy to eat. Giving a chick anything that could make her sick or worse is the last thing someone wants to do.
Bear in mind how little they are, so when you are planning treats for your baby chicks, you need to be careful. A good quality chick starter can provide the majority of their diet. Treats should account for no more than 10% of their total calories. This is a good rule of thumb for all of your birds, regardless of their age.
WHAT ARE THE BEST TREATS FOR BABY CHICKS?
Chicks will consume small portions of the same foods as their adult counterparts. They do, however, need a high-protein diet to grow and develop properly.
For a baby chick, too much of a good thing may be harmful. They should avoid eating too many sugary or unhealthy foods at this age. Nonetheless, there are also plenty of safe choices available to them.
Here are 12 safe treats baby chicken treats that your little birds will enjoy. These twelve were selected for their high protein or vitamin content.
1. Dubia Roaches
In this context, We’re not talking about common household roaches. Dubia roaches are raised solely to feed other species. They’re not only a perfect feeder insect for reptiles like bearded dragons, but they’re also a huge favorite for baby chickens.
They’re risk-free. Please put them in a plastic dog bowl (so they don’t crawl out) and let your little chicks help themselves to a tasty snack.
Dubia roaches have a protein content of about 36% and are an excellent treat for baby chicks. Dubia roaches, like mealworms, are simple to raise at home and are loved by chickens (and turkeys) of all ages!
For your little ones, little bits of spaghetti is a fun treat. They seem to regard them as bugs, jumping in to catch a piece and fleeing with it hanging from their mouths. If you’re looking for a good laugh, try this one.
This list should have given you some ideas for treats for baby chicks in your flock. There are various options available. Obey the laws of moderation, use grit with the treats, and enjoy watching your birds devour their treats!
Mealworms are typically your chick’s favorite high-protein treat out of all the high-protein treats you can give them. Not only are live mealworms rich in protein, but they also wiggle nicely. Nothing is cuter than a baby chick spotting a wriggling mealworm, grabbing it, and running away as happy as she can be, trying to prevent other chicks from stealing it.
Mealworms have a protein content of around 20%. Chick starter, on the other hand, has a protein content of 18-20%. This places meal worms squarely in the category of nutritious, high-protein treats for baby chicks. So, mealworms are one vital baby chicken treats you shouldn’t miss out.
4 Shredded Meat
Last night, did you have tacos for dinner? Shredded beef, ham, and pork are all high-protein treats for baby chicks, suitable and healthy for their diet. Yes, I did say “chicken.”
Chickens will consume chicken meat as long as the meat is otherwise healthy to eat. It’s a guideline never to feed your chickens something you wouldn’t eat yourself. As long as your meat properly cooked and processed, your baby chicks should be able to enjoy it as a treat. Just remember that smaller ladies need smaller items.
5. Fruits And Vegetables
Chicks enjoy fruits and vegetables in large quantities. Bananas, squash, oranges, cucumbers, strawberries, broccoli, kale, apples, tomatoes, and watermelon are some of our birds’ preferences.
Once more, bear in mind the size of your young birds. Softer items, such as watermelon or ripe stone fruit, can be thrown in whole and picked at by the chicks, but cut more rigid items into suitable sized bits. If you’re unsure, break it up.
Grit is made up of small pebbles that have been crushed. Grit is used by chickens to aid in the digestion of tough foods. For example, grit allows fully grown chickens to break down hard-shelled corn kernels. Grit is usually sold in two forms at feed stores. Adult chickens should eat daily grit, while baby chicks should eat “chick grit.”
Allow your chicks to have access to grit as soon as you start thinking about adding treats to their diet. When feeding on the floor with their mother, chicks naturally pick it up, but brooder chicks depend on you to provide it.
If you’re feeding treats to baby chicks, this is a must-have addition! Grit may be added to food or served on its own. We’ve had success in both directions; the birds seem to know it’s something they need and eat it as needed.
7. Fodder Meals
Do you plant fodder for some of your farm’s animals? Fodder is made up of sprouted grains such as wheat or barley. This can be an excellent source of protein for a variety of farm animals, including baby chicks. Depending on the form of grain used, the actual protein percentage of fodder can vary. Putting together a fodder system at home can be a fun activity for the entire family.
Break up the root mats as much as possible before you attempt to feed fodder meals to baby chicks. You’ll also want to inspect the fodder for any signs of mold. Since fodder is a wet feed, serve it to your chicks in a bowl or other dish. Unless you cut it into smaller bits, most children will only peck at it or play with it, depending on their age.
8. Cottage Cheese & Yoghurts
Yogurt and cottage cheese, including eggs, are a healthy source of protein as treats for baby chicks. Yogurt, with all of its probiotics, is also beneficial to gut health. Our birds, both young and old, love cottage cheese; they make a mess, but they have a blast diving for the curds!
Due to personal preferences, broccoli may not strike you as a tasty snack, but it can be a nice treat for baby chicks. In their brooder, try hanging a broccoli stalk upside down.
Baby chicks enjoy exploring and pecking at new items. Broccoli’s good, deep green florets can be a fun and entertaining treat for them. For every 100 grams of broccoli, there are around 2.8 grams of protein.
10. Insects, Crickets & Worms
You should feed the baby chicks, insects, crickets, and worms. They are conveniently available in pet stores. You can also catch worms or other small insects from your yard with your kids, but it will take more effort.
This is a fun way to get kids involved in the treatment of your flock. Children enjoy picking cabbage moth caterpillars from garden plants and feeding them to young birds. It’s a form of pest control, and baby chicken treats all rolled into one entertaining box.
Crickets can be captured or bought and added to your chick brooder. This is a good one to try, and be sure to stay and watch the show. Chicks will undoubtedly enjoy the chase as much as the prize when they capture the unfortunate bug!
11. Scrambled Eggs
Baby chicks like scrambled eggs almost as much as adult chickens do, and it’s good for them. Don’t worry; if you make scrambled eggs for them to consume, they won’t become egg eaters. They don’t even understand what eggs are!
Baby chicks can eat all lettuce varieties; however, bear in mind that certain types of lettuce (such as iceberg) are low in nutrients. Cut the lettuce into small pieces and see how well it goes over with your chicks.
They also like fodder, so if you’re growing it for the chickens, make sure to share it with the babies as well; offer it to them when it’s still short. Alternatively, cut the tops off the fodder and serve it to the chicks in a small bowl.
1. When Can Baby Chicken Start Eating Treats?
We suggest you start introducing treats to your baby chicks when they are at least two weeks old. However, Chicks raised by broody hens usually get introduced to treats as early as a couple of days old. They are introduced to treats in the form of greens and bugs.
2. What Can Baby Chicks Eat?
Generally, chickens are omnivores. Baby chickens can eat varieties of food such as greens, bugs, worms, small mice, and as they grow older, they can eat frogs and treats.
Conclusion: Baby Chicken Treats
Each of the 12 options mentioned above is nutritious, high-protein treats for baby chicks. You’ll want to keep the number of treats you give your babies to a minimum, but if you have a lot of them, you can get creative.
Combining ingredients is a fun way to spice things up. For example, a mealworm scramble would be entertaining. A plate of alfalfa sprouts or fodder lightly tossed with dubia roaches and topped with a boiled egg will probably be very popular as a treat for baby chicks and adult chickens, respectively!
Remember that all of the foods mentioned above can only be consumed as a treat and not as a meal substitute. They should be free of mold and thoroughly rinsed to eliminate any pesticide residue. A specially formulated chick starter is the best nutrition for baby chicks, but treats are a fun way to keep things interesting for your chicks.