Mealworms look entirely disgusting to us. The crunchy brown worms seem entirely unappetizing. To a chicken, mealworms are bites of heaven. Chickens will go absolutely crazy over mealworms, and for good reason. There are several reasons that you should be feeding your chickens mealworms!
A Little Goes a Long Way
Mealworms are incredibly dense in the amount of protein that they contain. For adult chickens, even a few mealworms (as in 1-10) is enough to give them a boost of protein. So the bags of mealworms that you see in the store will last you longer than you think. In fact, you want to use them sparingly as a treat and not the entire feed source for your chickens.
A Punch of Protein
All living things need to have protein and chickens are no different. Mealworms are a wonderful source of protein for your chickens. Feeding even a few mealworms in addition to their normal feed will increase their protein intake. Laying hens generally need about 16% of their diet to be protein and although feed can provide much of that, meal worms can add a large amount of their daily required protein.
Help During Molting
Chickens moult during the spring and fall. When they moult, they will lose some of their feathers and will replace them with new ones. It takes a lot of extra protein to make new feathers. This means that during moulting, many chicken keepers are looking for ways to increase the amount of protein in their chickens’ diets. Mealworms are an easy way to add a dense amount of protein easily and will have your chickens looking gorgeous again in no time.
You’re probably aware that eggs are made up of mostly protein. Eggs are considered one of the best sources of protein out there. Laying hens need ample protein in their diet to produce rich eggs. Many chicken keepers say that their egg flavor improved after adding mealworms to their hens’ diets. The addition of mealworms can give some hens the extra boost of protein needed to produce more eggs.
Do you use a deep litter system? If so, you may know how hard it can be to stir that litter up. Why do it yourself when you can have your birds do it for you? Chickens go crazy over mealworms. If you’ll sprinkle some on the top of your bedding, they will scratch up the bedding looking for more long after they’ve eaten them all. No more stirring bedding!
If you’re not feeding your chickens mealworms, you need to be! There are too many benefits to these crunchy little worms not to feed them to your flock.