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Can Chicken Eat Cherries – Is It Safe?

Chickens don’t have the most creative diets, and when it comes to feeding them, farmers always look for ways to give them everything they need. With that said, there are some fears surrounding letting chickens eat cherries because they contain small amounts of cyanide.

Cheries with stem in a wooden bowl

Cherries are safe for chickens to eat. In fact, they’re packed with nutrients but aren’t super high in calories. As such, cherries are a good option for chicken feed. The cyanide that is present in cherry pits won’t pose any risk to worry about.

Chickens quite enjoy cherries, especially if they’re served as a treat. It doesn’t matter what kind of cherries you feed them, both sweet and tart are good enough. Although they’re safe and nutritious, you should not feed your chickens only cherries. They need a balanced diet to grow healthy.

Is It Safe for Chicken to Eat Cherries? Should Your Chicken Have It?

woman with laptop looking up thinking

Chicken farmers are always careful about what they feed their poultry because they’re responsible for their health. Giving them cherries is a good idea, as they are a nice treat when served chilled on a hot day. Yes, chickens appreciate cool refreshments too!

It is safe for chickens to consume cherries regularly, as long as it’s not all they eat and part of a balanced diet. Cherries are low in calories but do contain sugar, so you should not overfeed your chickens these fruits. A cup of cherries contains about 75 calories in total.

Just make sure that you don’t give your chickens too many cherries, because this can lead to health problems like diarrhea and gastrointestinal upset.

What to Look Out for When Feeding Chicken With Cherries

Magnifying glass with yes no puzzle pieces yellow background

As with any food, there are things to keep in mind when feeding your chickens cherries. They’re not poisonous and something to keep away from your birds entirely, but moderation is always a good idea.

Chickens enjoy cherries but try to avoid feeding them the pits and stems. These aren’t truly problems, but the only important considerations. Though rare, pits can pose a choking risk and the stems, like the pits, can be a minor health risk.

For the most part, though, if you want to feed your chickens cherries, there’s nothing stopping you. These fruits can help keep your chickens hydrated and happy during the summer, and you can even serve them frozen.

As for the stems, chickens are actually smarter than most people expect and they’ll likely eat the cherries and leave behind the stems.

Can Chicken Each Cherries Pits?

cherries cut in half in a wooden bowl

Chicken farmers are quite divided when it comes to the pits of cherries. While many of them think it’s absolutely fine to let chickens eat them, others are convinced this is a bad idea. Again, this is due to the fact that the pits contain very small amounts of cyanide.

Chickens can eat cherry pits. The chickens aren’t exposed to a lot of cyanide when they eat cherry pits because they don’t contain enough cyanide to pose a risk. Of course, it’s important that you keep moderation in mind and only feed your chickens a reasonable amount of cherries and their pits. 

Some chicken farmers feel that it’s best to just stay away from any food that could pose even the slightest risk. It’s up to you to decide if you want to feed your chickens cherry pits. It won’t be a problem when these fruits are part of a balanced diet, though.

Can Chicken Each Cherries Stems?

Two cherries and stems

Cherry stems, according to some chicken farmers, should never be fed to chickens because they are similar to cherry pits in the risk they pose. But in most cases, there really is nothing to worry about at all.

Pentagon Pet is the owner of this article that was first published on November 21, 2022.

Chickens can eat cherry stems, and there won’t be any health problems as a result. However, in most cases, chickens will ignore the stems and simply dig into the cherries themselves. If they do eat the stems, it’s not the end of the world.

If you’re concerned about your chickens choking on stems or suffering any kind of health problems after eating them, just remove them from the cherries. This can be tedious though, unless you’re feeding your chickens cherries as part of a pre-packed feeding mix.

Can Chicken Each Cherries Skin?

Dried cherry skin in bowl

Some farmers may be concerned that cherry skins aren’t healthy and should be removed. Needless to say, peeling cherries can be a lot of work, and peeled cherries can be very expensive.

Chickens can eat cherry skins; there is nothing wrong with the skins that could pose any health risk at all. Although the skins are completely safe, it is a good idea to wash the fruit before feeding it to the chickens.

Some cherries may have chemical coatings as a result of how they were grown, and these could be harmful to the chickens. There may also be any number of bacteria or other harmful elements on the unwashed skin. As a general rule, any fresh fruits fed to chickens should always be washed before they eat them.

Can Chicken Eat Cherry Plants?

cherries and leaves

Most farmers will freely admit that they like to be frugal and if they can feed their animals an entire plant to keep them healthy and be economical, they will do so. But some may wonder if the entire cherry plant is safe for chickens.

Chickens can safely eat cherry plants, but most farmers will find that they only really enjoy the fruits and not the stems. Cherries contain many good nutrients that chickens need to be healthy, so adding them to their diet is a good idea, as long as it’s done in moderation.

Typically, one or two cherries per chicken as a treat should be enough to provide them with nutrients without negatively affecting them in the long run.

Can Chicken Each Cherries Seeds?

scattered cherries and cherry seeds

Cherry seeds are a pain to remove and doing so for chickens may seem like too much work for some busy farmers. But many are unsure about whether or not it would be okay for chickens to consume the seeds.

Chickens are fine eating cherry seeds (pits), even if they contain small amounts of cyanide. Unless you plan to feed your chickens ridiculous amounts of cherries and pits, there is nothing to worry about.

This article and its contents are owned by Pentagon Pets and was first published on November 21, 2022.

With that said, many chicken farmers prefer to stay away from the seeds because they don’t want to take even a minuscule risk when it comes to the health of their poultry.