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Can Chickens Eat Mulberries? (Quick Facts)

Mulberries are the fruits of mulberry trees. This fruit is mainly grown in Asia and North America and is related to figs and breadfruit. These fruits consist of a sweet flavor, impressive nutrients, and countless health benefits.

Can chickens eat mulberries?

Yes, chickens can eat mulberries. Chickens enjoy eating mulberries as these fruits do not come with any health risks for chickens. However, large consumption of too many mulberries can act as laxatives for the chickens, and these fruits do not contain the ideal nutrition required for chickens.

Mulberries are safe for chickens like most fruits. Although these do not serve the ideal nutrition required for chickens, they enjoy eating these fruits for their sweet flavor. They are mostly water, 88 percent, and contain only 60 calories per 140g.

Mulberries are rich in antioxidants, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Iron, Fiber, Riboflavin, Magnesium, and Potassium, and so are pretty good at increasing the immune system of chickens. These also help in their digestion. Additionally, having a small number of calcium benefits egg production.

Mulberry leaves:

Leaves of mulberry trees are mostly used in medicinal, industrial, and culinary applications. However, Morus Rubra and Morus Alba mulberry leaves contain a white sap called latex which is mildly toxic and hallucinogenic to humans.

It can cause an upset stomach, hallucinations, and skin irritations upon touching.

It is safe to say that the mentioned species of mulberry leaves are poisonous for chickens and birds. Leaves that have matured enough and have a significant amount of latex can be highly toxic to chickens.

Other than these, chickens can eat leaves of other mulberry species as they are non-toxic.

Unripe mulberry:

Similarly, unripe mulberries of the Morus Rubra and Morus Alba are considered slightly toxic for both humans and animals. In conclusion, unripe mulberries of such species are not safe for chickens and birds. These may cause low toxicity if eaten.

Are mulberries harmful to chickens?

No, mulberries are not harmful to chickens. Like most fruits and berries, mulberries are safe for chickens and birds. These do not have any associated health risks.

It should be noted, that eating mulberries in large quantities can make them work like laxatives. In such a case, it will also be the result of chickens producing purple excrements.

Mulberries are safe and carry small amounts of nutrients. As they are mostly water, these have low calories, about 60 calories per 140g. So, they don’t exactly provide the required nutritional value for chickens.

How much mulberry is ok for chickens?

About 5-6 mulberries are fine for chickens. Most mulberries are safe and non-toxic for chickens. However, having a lot of them can have consequences.

Consuming too many mulberries can cause them to work like laxatives and make the chickens excrete more often and produce purplish excrements.

Additionally, too many mulberries can cause an upset stomach. This will make the chickens expel more often than usual, as well as cause them to not eat food when given.

What foods are toxic to chickens?

Although chickens eat almost everything, certain foods should be avoided from feeding the chickens. Such foods include:


Any sort of chocolates and candies contain the compound methylxanthines. These are known to stimulate the nervous and cardiovascular systems of chickens and cause health problems.

Moreover, they also contain theobromine, which is another compound considered to be toxic to poultry.

Nightshade plants:

Nightshade plants are the plants belonging to the “Solanaceae” plants family. Not all parts of these plants are bad for chickens, certain parts are and people need to be careful with these plants when it comes to feeding the chickens.

For example, green potatoes, after being exposed to sunlight, produce chemical named solanine which is considered harmful for chickens.

Strong-tasting foods:

Foods such as garlic and onions do not harm the chickens. These should be avoided because consumption of these foods will affect the taste of the eggs produced by the chickens.

Fast foods:

Junk foods contain a lot of grease and fats and are not considered healthy. These highly processed foods are worse for chickens.

Raw beans:

Raw and uncooked beans are considered the silent terminators of the backyard. These contain hemagglutinin and should not be fed to chickens. Cooked beans are harmless to chickens and can be fed easily.

Caffeine-containing foods:

Coffee contains methylxanthines like chocolates and should be avoided. Foods containing caffeine, such as coffee and tea, should be avoided as caffeine is harmful to chickens.


The pit and peel of an avocado contain the compound Persin which can be very toxic to birds and chickens. Most experts advise against feeding these to chickens.

Moldy or rotten foods:

Leftover stale or overripe foods can be fed to the chickens, but moldy or rotten foods should be strictly avoided as these can result in severe health complications.

How many times a day should I feed my chickens?

Food should be available to chickens all day. Although there is no general rule as to how much a chicken should be fed, certain factors may determine the required amount. These factors are the size and breed of the chicken, activity, needs of the chicken, and the time of the year.

Chickens usually consume about 120 grams of feed in a single day. This value may vary from chicken to chicken depending on the aforementioned factors. An egg-laying chicken will eat more food than a regular chicken, for example.

Throughout the day, chickens may also eat grit. This means that they will devour some scraps from elsewhere. Some chickens may also feed on bugs that are commonly found in the backyard.

However, providing food for the chicken all day long may have harmful consequences too. For example, making feed available all day may attract pests. This will promote the risk of the feed getting spoiled by rodents and pests.

An ideal thing to do is to provide 120 grams of feed per chicken. Then, by the end of the day, see how much is left. This will give an idea about the required amount.

What is the best way to feed chickens?

The best way to feed chickens is to use a chicken trough. Most of the time, chickens are kept in confined spaces. That means that the chickens may be living with their excrements.

Throwing food directly on the floor and letting the chicken peck at them is harmful to the chickens. This is because the chickens may eat the food along with their feces. This will result in diseases and parasitic infections.

Using a chicken trough will make sure that the food does not mix with unwanted stuff and remain dry and clean for consumption. This will make sure the chickens are getting healthy meals.

Final Thoughts

Most mulberries and mulberry leaves are non-toxic to chickens, and 5-6 a day is enough for them. Consuming more will result in unwanted effects. Chickens can consume most foods, and the food should be on a dish, chicken trough, or feeder to avoid the food mixing with unwanted materials.