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Do chickens eat ants? Several times a year we get over ran by ants. How to get rid of ants? You could use poisons, they come in all kinds of varieties; granular, powder, and liquids, but when you do so you are pouring poison on your ground.
I am always leery of using poison on anything. You never know what you may want to use that piece of ground for later. Think what may get into the poison you don’t want to get rid of such as your pets, livestock, or children.
Do Chickens Eat Ants?
A great way of dealing with ants, is to use you chickens. In the right situation your chickens will become an ant eating machine. Your chickens will not cure all issues with ants, but in the right situation they will prove invaluable in your fight against the insects.
The best natural way to get rid of ants is to use your chickens. The wonderful little egg making machines are great at getting rid of ants. Just how do chickens get rid of ants? Well that is simple, they eat them.
How to make a chicken eat ants.
How do you get your chickens to exterminate ants? Well, this all depends on how you keep your chickens. If you keep your chickens in a coop and run situation, then I recommend using some form of chicken tractor. A chicken tractor is a movable pen for your chickens.
It is fairly important for your chicken tractor to be light enough for you to be able to move it around by your self. You can build one yourself like the one I built here.
Unfortunately, mine is too heavy, 2x4s don’t weigh much by themselves but by the time you are done the weight of the wood adds up very quickly. I have gone to a much lighter solution called a pet gazebo, but there are many options you can check out here.
Use A Chicken Tractor to Get Rid of Ants.
Place your chicken tractor over the top of the ant hole that is plaguing your land. Make sure that your chicken tractor is on even ground and there are no spots your chickens may escape, or for predators to easily get in.
Place some water in the tractor, I always give access to fresh clean water for my chickens no matter where I put them. I do not provide food while they are on ant duty. Your chickens are supposed to be eating the bugs that’s the whole point.
Keep in mind that I do not keep my chickens penned like this for extended periods of time, usually the chickens get rid of the ants after just a few hours.
Now just add chickens. Do not be discouraged if the chickens don’t start eating all the ants right away. Believe it or not it may take a little while for your chickens to realize that these little bugs could be food.
If your chickens are not going after the ants then use some scratch grain, try to sprinkle it around on the ground near the ants to encourage scratching they may get an ant on accident, and then it’s game on.
Is it ok for chickens to eat ants?
You may wonder if it is ok for your chickens to eat ants. The answer is yes, the actually pack some pretty good nutrition. They have been a part of diets in many different cultures in history. I found a great article that gives all of the national factor of red ants and some fun facts that I enjoyed reading. You can find the article here, a quick read and very informative.
Chickens will not eat all ants, usually they go after the big ones with no problems. Fire ants like the can be a problem. Fire ants are tiny ants that get everywhere. I have not seen my chickens eat the tiny ants. I have seen thees fire ants get on the chickens and create issues.
If little fire ants invade your coop, make sure the product used on them is not going to harm your chickens. I recommend using poultry dust, if you click the link it will show you this product. It is safe to use around your free range chickens. When needed use poultry dust on your chickens that are penned your chicks will thank you for it.
Freerange chickens and ant killer.
If you free range your chickens odds are you don’t have a problem with excessive ants. If you do, consider using an exercise pen to help corral your birds and encourage eating ants.
The trick I told you about with scratch grains or treats will also work with the free range birds. Once the chicken eats ants, then they should continue to eat them again and again.
If you would like to see what my chickens eat on a day-to-day basis, and learn what to feed chickens in every stage of life I did a write-up on what to feed chickens give it a read and share your thoughts.