While having a bunch of chickens in your backyard, the main concern is what to feed them. Chickens are omnivores, and they love to intake leftovers from the table. There is a variety of foods we can introduce to our chickens to sustain a balanced diet. Thinking about chicken feed, we may want to know that can chickens eat sweet potatoes? Yes, Chickens love to have sweet potatoes.
Sweet potatoes are beneficial for the chickens. They provide essential nutrients for their growth and productivity. They belong to the morning glory family. Maintaining the proper amount of sweet potatoes is essential. Sweet potatoes are nutritious but cannot restate with their daily feed. Many concerns need to be answered i.e Can chicken eat sweet potato skin? Can they eat sweet potato leaves and vines? Are they a healthy option for the chickens?
Is White And Sweet Potatoes The Same?
No, they are not the same. Both crops belong to different families of vegetables. Moreover, they do not have the same taste as well. However, you can cook both vegetables in the same style. As compared to white potatoes, sweet potatoes provide more health aid to the chickens. Although sweet potatoes are high in sugars, you should limit the intake to make them safe for chickens.
What Nutrients Do Chickens Get From Sweet Potatoes?
Research has shown that sweet potatoes are a great source of nutrition for domestic animals and birds. The main ingredients found in sweet potatoes are starch, ascorbic acid, thiamin, vitamin, riboflavin, and niacin. On the other hand, its vines, roots, leaves have proteins, fiber, and fats.
Sweet potatoes are high in calories and starch that makes almost 80-85 percent of their content. There is a larger amount of fiber and proteins but low levels of carbs in its vines. Starch present in raw sweet potatoes is not easy to break into sugars. After boiling or steaming, an enzyme called amylase, transforms that starch into simple sugars, making it easy to digest.
Sweet potatoes also have decent amounts of Vitamin C, beta carotene, and potassium. All these components make sweet potatoes a healthier option as compared to white potatoes.
Can Chickens Eat Sweet Potato Leaves?
Yes, chickens can have sweet potato leaves. It is also easy to grow sweet potato leaves at home. Sweet potato leaves have a certain amount of proteins present in them. Chickens love to peck on green leaves because they admire leafy green vegetables.
Dried leaves of sweet potatoes are not safe to eat because they are not suitable for the digestive system. Growing fresh sweet potato leaves is a quite simple task to do. Grow sweet potato leaves in your backyard and your chickens will be happy to have them.
Can Chicken Have Sweet Potato Peels?
Chickens can have sweet potato peels as a healthy snack. But, they cannot be fed on green or white potato peels. They have solanine in it that is toxic and deadly. Sweet potato peels do not contain any toxic compounds and are a healthy choice for chickens. While feeding them sweet potato peels, chop them or grind them so they are easily digestible without any effort.
Can Chickens Eat Sweet Potato Vines?
Sweet potato vines are a perfect option for chicken feed. When we plant sweet potato tubers, we get many vines, resultantly. People usually throw them away considering them useless. Why should one not try sweet potato vines for the chickens? Vines have a healthy protein proportion in them and they are not toxic at all.
What Amount Of Sweet Potato A Chicken Can Have?
It solely depends on what age group they belong to. If your chicken bird is less than eight weeks old, do not exceed the ratio of more than 20 percent. For example, with 10 kg of feed, you can add 2 kg of sweet potatoes.
When the chickens become older than 8 weeks old, gradually increase the dosage as their size increases. If you have egg-laying hens, they can consume 30 percent of feed from sweet potatoes. The addition of sweet potatoes can enhance the egg quality and taste.
Can I Feed Chickens Raw Sweet Potatoes?
Studies conducted in this regard show that chickens can have raw potatoes in the feed as well as cooked sweet potatoes. The main focus is that both types have different digestive ratios. If we feed chickens raw sweet potatoes, the digestibility content in the body will be 45-48 percent. Alternatively, when they eat cooked sweet potatoes, the ratio goes to 60-65 percent.
Are Sweet Potatoes Safe For The Chickens?
When it comes to feeding the chickens, we should not impose our choices on chickens. The chicken doesn’t need to find the same delicious food as humans do. Sweet potatoes are a safe eating option for chickens. One should prefer giving sweet potatoes over white ones. The good news is that you can feed them every part of sweet potatoes like their skin, scraps, etc.
Do Not Give Moldy Sweet Potatoes
Make sure that the sweet potatoes you are feeding your chickens upon will be fresh. If they lay outside for some time and get mold, do not feed it to your chickens. Mold is harmful to chickens and can lead to acute mild health problems. Mold is toxic and can cause infections as well.
Stay Away From Solanine
Solaline is present in other types of potatoes and is called a natural pesticide. For chickens, it can cause complicated health issues. If chickens consume larger quantities of solanine, they may be subject to death. In other cases, solanine can provoke mental issues, diarrhea, and respiratory problems.
Do Not Feed Green Potatoes To Chickens
As a chicken owner, do not feed your chickens on green potatoes. There is no way you can feed green potatoes as a replacement for sweet potatoes. Chickens cannot eat all the leftovers from the green potato, like sweet potatoes. Its skin, buds, and scraps are toxic and unhealthy.
Chickens are domestic birds that can survive on leftovers from our kitchen and a variety of vegetables and fruits. They love to have sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes have plenty of healthful components like fiber, carbs, starch, protein, and more. Chicken can eat everything scraped from sweet potatoes like skin, peels, vines. You can either be fed sweet potato in raw, or cooked form to your chickens. However, it is better to avoid giving them the green part of the potato, which can be proven poisonous.