Yes, chickens can eat mushrooms. A lot of curious chicken owners ask the question ‘can chickens eat mushrooms?’ The bonus to this answer is that mushrooms are full of vitamins, minerals and fiber.
In general, chickens can eat any kind of mushroom that is also deemed safe for human consumption. Some wild mushrooms that can pop up in their foraging area could be toxic – this is where care needs to be taken.
All of these things are necessary for raising happy, healthy chickens that lay an abundance of eggs. A lot of chickens love mushrooms but some chickens may be picky about eating mushrooms as well.
If you want your chickens to eat mushrooms, you need to ensure they are safe mushrooms and you also may have to prepare them in a particular way to make them more appetizing.
If you haven’t given your chickens mushrooms yet, go ahead and give it a try and see if it is to their taste.
What this article covers
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Do Chickens Even Like Mushrooms?
Generally, mushrooms are not a desirable food that chickens will readily gobble down.
The texture of raw mushrooms is not the most appealing to chickens.
Its possible your chickens will not eat mushrooms on their first exposure, but there are ways to prepare mushrooms to make it more appetizing to fussy chickens.
We discuss the ways to prepare mushrooms and how to feed it to your chickens further on.
Are Mushrooms Good For Chickens To Eat?
Commercially grown mushrooms are a great food to give to your chickens to eat. Mushrooms are full of fiber, minerals and vitamins that help your chicken’s growth and provide them with optimum egg laying nutrients. Mushrooms are in particular a great source of B Vitamins, Phosphorous, Vitamin D, Selenium, Copper, Zinc and Potassium.
We researched the nutritional profile of the common white button mushroom to give you an overview of how good this vegetable food really is.
Nutrition Profile of Mushrooms
Serving Size: 1 cup of mushrooms
- Calories: 21.1
- Protein: 3 grams
- Carbohydrates: 3.1 grams
- Fiber: 3 grams
- Sugar: 1.9 grams
- Potassium: 305mg
- Phosphorous: 82.6 grams
- Copper: 305 grams
- Zinc: 0.5 grams
- Selenium: 8.9 grams
- Vitamin D: 0.2 grams
A diet high in fibre and nutrients contributes to a well functioning immunity, optimal growth, healthy egg production and numerous other beneficial health functions for your chickens.
This study found that fiber is super important to aid healthy digestion and bowel function for chickens. The same study also found that fiber aids in cleaning the gut and that chickens with a fiber-rich diet release less ammonia in their poop.
There are many studies such as this one, this one and this one which support feeding mushrooms to your chickens to enhance their egg laying performance, immune system function, improve their growth and enhance beneficial bacteria in their gut.
Mushrooms also contains super nutrients such as Potassium, B Vitamins and Phosphorous.
These are very important vitamins for your chicken’s immune system, growth and egg laying potential.
All in all, mushrooms are a super vegetable and is worth giving to your chickens as part of a healthy and well rounded diet. Just ensure you are also giving them a variety of other nutritional foods and high quality feed as well, such as this one we love for our own girls.
Safe and Common Types of Mushrooms for Chickens to Eat
- White button
- Lion’s mane
- Chicken of the woods
- Black trumpet
- Black trumpet
How Many Mushrooms Should Chickens Eat?
There is no set rule of how many mushrooms you can feed your chickens but it should be fed in moderation. A high quality feed such as this one should make up 90% of their diet.
A variety of other fruits and vegetables such as scraps and treats should also be given as part of their diet. A diverse variety of food sources ensures your flock gets all the necessary vitamins, minerals and nutrients they need in their diet for great health.
How to Feed Chickens Mushrooms
There are several ways you can prepare mushrooms to give to your chickens. By chopping the mushrooms up, feeding the mushroom whole or cooking the mushrooms first.
Chopping the mushroom up before feeding it to your chickens will help your chickens use less energy to eat their food. Chop up the mushrooms, for your chickens into chicken bite sized pieces.
Feeding your chickens whole mushroom will give them a very stimulating activity and keep them occupied for a long time as they demolish it bit by bit.
Alternatively cooking the mushrooms will soften them and may make them more appealing to the chickens for eating.
Can Chickens Eat Wild Mushrooms?
Mushrooms can pop up suddenly overnight. So what happens if your chickens discover them and have a peck? Can chickens eat wild mushrooms growing in your yard?
Some mushrooms can be poisonous for your chickens. Identifying which among the wild mushrooms are edible can be a challenge. Commercially grown and supermarket bought mushrooms are the safest options if you want to include mushrooms in your chickens’ diet.
Edible mushrooms can be very hard to identify and classify as safe. To ensure the safety and quality of foods that you are offering your chickens, it is highly advisable to stick with commercially grown mushrooms you would buy from the supermarket.
If you find wild mushroom in your yard or around the space where your chickens inhabit and you are not sure if these mushrooms are edible or not, make sure you remove them. Precaution is always better than suddenly bringing your chickens to the vet due to them showing signs of toxicity or poisoning.
So, Can Chickens Eat Mushrooms?
Yes! Go ahead and given your chickens the nutritious health benefits of mushrooms.
Just remember that the vast majority of a chickens diet should come from a high quality commercial feed with other fruits and vegetables given as well.
Chicken Care Shopping List
Are you looking for a shopping list of everything you need when caring for your precious flock? We have put together an easy reference of items for your convenience.
- Chicken coop
- Wood shavings bale
- Nesting Box
- Layer pellets
- Chicken scratch/grain
- Shell grit
- Chicken Safe Disinfectant
- Coop cleaner
- Chicken dust
- Calcium supplement
Wanting to know if chickens can eat broccoli? Read on here!
Nutrition of mushrooms – https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/278858
Dried Mushrooms Fed to Chickens Study – https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20075283/
Mushrooms and growth in Chickens Study – https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25169695/
Mushrooms and Dietary Supplement in Chickens – https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29969321/