Can Chickens Eat Oranges? 5 Important Benefits

Written By Jill Taylor

Can chickens eat oranges? The good news is that oranges are safe to feed your chickens. But before you start serving up some citrus-filled treats, it’s important to understand the nutritional value of oranges and why they might not be a favorite in the coop.

Although oranges are good for your chickens nutritionally speaking, some chickens may not like the taste. Most chickens aren’t fond of citrus fruits like oranges or lemons due to their tangy flavor. However, this doesn’t mean all chickens will dislike them; some may even enjoy them as a treat!

If you want to give your flock an orange treat now and then, cut it into small pieces so they can easily eat it without choking or getting stuck in their throats. This article will provide information on whether it’s safe for chickens to eat oranges and the nutritional value of this citrus fruit.

can chickens eat oranges

Can chickens eat oranges?

Oranges are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals for chickens, such as vitamin C, calcium, phosphorus, and potassium. They also contain small amounts of protein and fat. The high levels of antioxidants in oranges help keep chickens healthy by boosting their immunity and fighting off infection.

Oranges are also known to reduce cholesterol levels in hens which helps them lay healthier eggs with less cholesterol content.

No matter how nutritious a food is, it shouldn’t make up the majority of a chicken’s diet, as this can lead to nutritional imbalances over time. Therefore, it is generally recommended that you only give your chickens oranges as an occasional treat rather than making them a daily staple in their diet.

This way, they can still benefit from eating the fruit without overeating one food item.


The benefits of eating oranges for chickens

Not only do oranges provide a great source of nutrition and flavor, but they also offer several other great benefits that make them an ideal food for chickens. Let’s explore why oranges are such great food for your feathered friends.

Oranges Are High in Vitamin C

One of the biggest benefits of feeding your chickens oranges is that they are high in vitamin C. Vitamin C helps keep chickens healthy and strong, which is especially important during cold winter months when they tend to be more susceptible to illness.

Because chickens naturally produce vitamin C, eating oranges will help supplement their natural levels and keep them healthy.

Oranges Help Boost Immunity

In addition to being high in vitamin C, oranges contain other essential vitamins and minerals that help support a chicken’s immune system. This is especially helpful during the winter months when there is an increased risk of illness in birds due to colder weather conditions.

Feeding your chickens oranges will ensure they stay healthy and happy throughout the year.

Oranges Help Improve Egg Production

Another great benefit of feeding your chickens oranges is that it can help improve egg production. This is because oranges are high in calcium, essential for healthy egg production and development. Calcium also helps keep bones strong and supports muscle growth, making it an important part of any chicken’s diet.

Oranges Provide Variety

Variety is key to keeping your chickens healthy and happy, so it’s important to give them different types of food from time to time to ensure they get all the nutrients they need without becoming bored or uninterested in their food options.

Adding oranges to their diet gives them something new and exciting while providing them with all the necessary vitamins and minerals they need for optimal health.

Oranges Are Affordable

Finally, one of the best things about feeding your chickens oranges is that they are relatively inexpensive compared to other types of bird feed or supplements on the market today. This makes them an excellent choice for those who want to provide their birds with quality nutrition without breaking the bank.

Things to watch out for when feeding oranges to chickens

fresh peeled orange

Oranges are often thought of as one of the best treats to give chickens, but there are some things you should know before adding oranges to your chicken’s diet. Read on for three important points to remember when feeding your flock oranges.

Your Chickens Might Not Love the Taste

Though chickens will certainly eat oranges if they’re hungry, they might not love the taste as much as other treats. Since citrus fruits have a strong sour flavor, they can be a bit of an acquired taste for your birds!

If you decide to feed your chickens oranges, it’s a good idea to mix them with other treats like berries or grains, so they don’t go to waste.

Too Much Vitamin C Can Be Bad

While oranges are full of healthy vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, too much vitamin C can be dangerous for chickens. If you decide to feed your birds oranges, ensure it’s in moderation and only once or twice a week at most.

Feed in Moderation

As with any treat, moderation is key when feeding your chickens oranges (or any citrus fruit). Citrus fruits contain natural sugars, which can lead to weight gain if given too often or in large amounts at once.

It’s also important to note that citrus fruits should never replace regular feed; rather, think of them as special treats you give your chickens once or twice a week at most.

How often should chickens eat oranges?

Oranges are a great treat for chickens, though they should not be given daily. Up to 10% of a chicken’s diet can be made up of fruit and vegetables such as oranges or other citrus fruits – but only occasionally.

Giving too much fruit and vegetable-based treats could cause health problems for the chickens, as their digestive systems are better suited for grain-based feeds than for produce like oranges. Therefore, it is best to give chickens oranges only as an occasional treat and in moderation.

How to prepare oranges for feeding to chickens

flock of chickens

Oranges are popular for chicken owners who want to provide their chickens with a nutritious and tasty treat. But before you start feeding your hens oranges, there are some things you should know. Let’s take a look at the basics of preparing oranges for chickens.

Preparation is Key

The most important thing to remember when preparing oranges for chickens is that they must be washed first. This helps remove any dirt or pesticides that may have been used during production. Once the oranges are clean, it’s time to chop them into small pieces. This makes them easier for the chickens to eat and digest.

It’s also important to note that not all chickens will like oranges. That’s why it’s best to introduce them slowly and in small amounts until you know how your flock responds. They may even prefer other foods like berries or apples, so don’t be discouraged if they don’t take to the oranges immediately.


While chickens can eat the peel of an orange, it is unlikely that they will do so on their own. Instead, removing any uneaten peel from the coop after they are done eating is best, as this can cause digestive issues in some birds.

It’s also important to watch for uneaten pieces of orange left around the coop or yard, as these can attract pests like ants or rodents if left unattended.

Can baby chickens eat oranges?

baby chick

If you’re wondering if baby chickens can eat oranges, the answer is yes. However, it should be in small amounts, as feeding too much may upset their digestive system. You may also find that your baby chicks will not particularly like the taste of the orange, as adult chickens generally don’t have a penchant for citrus fruits.

Orange-based treats could be given occasionally, but watch that they do not cause any health problems in your infant flock. It is most likely safer to avoid oranges completely when feeding baby chickens and stick to feed specifically formulated for chicks instead.

Can chickens eat orange peel?

Whether your chicken can eat orange peel is an interesting question. It’s important to note that orange peel is not bad for chickens, but they will likely not enjoy it. This means that orange peel is safe for them, but they will most likely not be interested in it.

So while they won’t benefit from eating it, they will also not suffer any negative side effects if they consume it. In reality, chickens find the taste of orange flesh unappetizing, so they probably like the peel even less.

What other fruits can chickens eat?

fresh watermelon

Fruits are a great source of nutrition for chickens, and oranges provide many benefits. But did you know that chickens can also enjoy a variety of other fruits? Let us explore what other fruits are popular among our feathery friends.


Watermelon is an excellent choice for chickens because it is full of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B6, C, and potassium. It’s also a great source of dietary fiber and antioxidants. Cut the watermelon into small pieces so your feathered friends can easily eat it.

Read More: Can Chickens Eat Watermelon? 6 Fantastic Benefits


Cantaloupes are packed with Vitamin A and C, which is beneficial for helping maintain a healthy immune system in chickens. Additionally, cantaloupes contain lycopene which may help protect against certain types of cancers. Cut the cantaloupe into cubes or slices before serving it to your chickens.

Read More: Can Chickens Eat Cantaloupe? 6 Amazing Benefits


Lemons are packed with Vitamin C and citric acid, which makes them an excellent choice for keeping chickens healthy due to their natural antibacterial properties. Cut the lemon into small pieces before serving so your chickens can enjoy them easily.

Read More: Can Chickens Eat Lemons? 4 Excellent Benefits


Grapefruits contain vitamins A and C, making them an excellent choice for keeping your feathered friends healthy. However, they should only be given in moderation due to their acidic nature, which could cause problems if eaten in large quantities. Cut the grapefruit into small pieces before giving it to your chickens so they can easily consume it.

Read More: Can Chickens Eat Grapefruit? 4 Awesome Benefits


Melons are rich in essential nutrients, including vitamins A and C, as well as dietary fiber, which aids in digestion. They’re also full of natural sugars, which makes them a tasty treat for your feathered friends. Make sure to cut the melon into cubes or slices before serving it to your chickens so they can eat it more easily.

Can chickens eat oranges – final thoughts

All in all, oranges can be given as an occasional treat to your flock. Still, they should not make up the bulk of their diet due to potential health risks associated with regularly overfeeding one type of food item.

Furthermore, since not all chickens may enjoy the taste of citrus fruits like oranges or lemons, it is best to introduce these items slowly and carefully until you know how each flock member reacts before offering larger portions at once.

With these pointers in mind, you should have no problem giving your feathered friends some juicy orange treats now and then.

Related Articles: