Can Chickens Eat Watermelon?
At first this doesn’t seem like a hard question – don’t we all love watermelon? There is nothing better on a hot day than a lovely cool watermelon for a sweet and healthy refreshment!
And when we finish with the scraps, we leave the watermelon rind and skin, and throw it in the scrap bin. But can chickens eat watermelon?
So really the question for chickens becomes –
Can chickens eat watermelon rind?
Good question, since chickens are usually fed the scraps, they probably don’t get a lot of sweet watermelon to eat, and just the skin part is left behind for them. That is unless they manage to scavenge a whole watermelon that is growing somewhere in the garden and successfully break it open somehow. In fact, when it comes to backyard chickens, nothing would surprise me because they are very enterprising little animals and when they find an opportunity, they will work away at it until they meet with success.
That is what I love about pet chickens, always on the lookout for some kind of fun!
Can Chickens Eat Watermelon And The Watermelon Rind?
As you may have guessed, watermelon is sweet and healthy for us as well as for chickens. Even though the rind is a little tasteless for humans, chickens love that as much as they love the watermelon itself. Even the watermelon rind or watermelon skin, chickens find that a healthy source of green material, and if they can peck off small enough pieces, they will gobble all of the watermelon skin as well, They just love it! My pet chickens had a welcome treat recently, when I gave them a leftover hollowed out melon shell. After we had scraped out a half melon, there was only the leftover rind and skin remaining, with a reasonable amount of the pink watermelon flesh inside. Not knowing whether the chickens would be able to eat such a large offering, I gave it to them just to see what would happen.
Within half an hour, the inside of the melon had been transformed to a pearly white color. with all traces of the watermelon flesh removed! As clean as a whistle, those chickens had eaten all of the sweet juicy part of the watermelon scraps, and we very quickly working their way down to the green part of the skin. Amazingly, that is exactly what happened, within another few minutes, they had ripped into the husk of the watermelon and reduced it to bare scraps in no time at all. I still can’t believe my own eyes when my pet chickens managed to demolish a whole half of a leftover watermelon shell – unbelievable, but true!
Why is watermelon such a treat for chickens?
Because watermelon is mostly consisting of water, this makes it an ideal treat for chickens during hot weather. Because it is cool and sweet, it is a tasty treat that also serves to rehydrate the animals on a hot day. Also because it contains a delicious interior and a healthy green exterior, there are lots of healthy nutrients that hungry chickens can extract from the watermelon, and no part of the leftovers will go to waste.
In fact, watermelon contains a wide range of healthy nutrients, vitamins and minerals which the vine extracts from the ground water, and fills the interior flesh with all sorts of goodies. Especially as the watermelon ripens, the interior becomes chock full of important vitamins and nutrients that are equally good for chickens as for humans.
Watermelon is good for hydration
It is important to always make sure that your chickens have an adequate supply of fresh clean water. The chickens always need to be able to access a steady supply and they stop at the water contained multiple times each day, just to keep hydrated no a regular basis. This is important for their egg production, as laying eggs on most days can be an energy sapping business, as well as using a lot of water in the process. Without access to water, chickens can become stressed, and stop laying eggs.
So this is yet another reason why treating your chickens to cool fresh watermelon rind and scraps can be a good idea in the summer months, just to avoid the possibility of the chickens becoming dehydrated, and getting stressed and unhealthy.
There is no alternative to a fresh supply of water – they have to have that as a necessity – but can chickens eat watermelon? Yes they can eat watermelon and even the watermelon rind, and it can certainly be fun to give your chickens a watermelon treat and then to watch them devour the whole lot, skin and all.