Our chickens have been spending time in the “goat pen” (time to move on and call it the chicken pen, I guess!) because with the arrival of spring they have rediscovered their urge to range onto the neighbour’s property. It’s a very large pen with varied terrain and flora so I don’t feel too bad for them, and I’m glad it’s been working. But maybe because they are “shut up” I found myself thinking about what they have to eat these days. We’ve never been that great about giving the chickens our scraps – they pick and choose and then whatever is left lies around on the ground (until a toddler comes to pick it up). The best is a compost they are free to scratch about in; I’m planning to create a compost pile in the pen this spring so they can do that.
I read about somebody chucking their veggie scraps in the blender and chopping them up for their chickens so I thought I’d try that. It was very popular! Every day, or other day, I blend a collection of vegetable and fruit scraps for the chickens. Sometimes they get a little yogurt in there, or a splash of apple cider vinegar, or a little garlic. It’s almost like cooking for chickens, and it’s kind of fun. I often don’t put salt in things I cook (a habit from when Little R was a baby) so occasional leftovers go in as well. Some ground up egg shells too if I’m not giving the chicks any. I think, on the whole, it’s best for them to find their own food, and I won’t coddle them in this way once it warms up and things start to grow, but for now they get these little treats and I’m happy seeing kitchen scraps so heartily enjoyed.
Yesterday Little R helped me garnish their mash with a shake of turmeric and a sprinkling of mung bean and lentil sprouts. Lucky chickens.
Dinner is served!