Choose The Right Nesting Herbs For Your Flock With This Simple Guide

Choose The Right Nesting Herbs For Your Flock With This Simple Guide

Do you want to add nesting herbs to your flock’s daily routine? Not sure which ones are best for your hens? Not sure what your flock really needs? In this article, you’ll discover the simplest way to figure out which nesting herb blend is best for your hens!

We’ll also cover how different herbs can provide different kinds of support, and why it’s so important to choose the right nesting herb blend.

What’s The Point Of Nesting Herbs?

You’re looking at all these herbs for chickens on Amazon, and they’re all starting to look the same. You’re not even sure what you need! Herbs can provide a lot of all-natural support and help you establish a healthy flock. They can also create a home for your hens that’s inviting and promotes egg laying, without using any synthetic or chemical scents. 

There’s a few different ways to use herbs:

  • As a feed additive
  • In your flock’s water
  • Mix with bedding
  • Add to nesting boxes

For example, you can mix herbs with your flock’s feed to improve digestion, improve the flavor of their feed, support immune systems, and/or add environmental interest. If you mix herbs into your flock’s nesting box or bedding, you can provide respiratory support, make the coop less attractive to flying insects, repel mites, and/or improve air quality. You can even use herbs topically by mixing into dust baths or by sprinkling them directly on your flock.

Why Most Flock Owners Use Nesting Herbs

If you’re new to chickens, or just looking to up your game, you might wonder why other flock owners use herbs in their coops, nesting boxes, and feed. There’s got to be some advantage if everyone’s doing it, right? After asking my readers, everyone I talk to has one or more of these 5 common reasons:

  • #1 A great smelling & inviting coop
  • #2 Healthier & better smelling nesting boxes
  • #3 Support egg production
  • #4 Pest control
  • #5 Respiratory support

Interestingly enough, these are also some of the biggest concerns that plague owners. Who doesn’t want a clean, great smelling home for their pets? Who doesn’t want great eggs with strong, unbroken shells? Who doesn’t want their hens to lay in nesting boxes? 

There’s a lot of different ways to arrive at this goal. My personal goal is to raise a healthy flock using as many natural solutions as possible. In my experience, herbs are some of the least expensive and most effective ways out there to raise a naturally healthy coop (especially compared to replacing flock members or visits to the vet). 

In our own coop, we started adding herbs to nesting boxes a few years ago. The hens seem happier and enjoy the herbs as treats. I like that the hens lay their eggs right in the nesting boxes (as opposed to the ground, where they can easily get broken and eaten). During days when they can’t go outside, the herbs keep them entertained for part of the day.

For example, this year, we’ve had a LOT of rain. Since chickens hate wet weather, they stay inside. This can quickly turn happy hens into bored hens who pick on each other and/or eat their eggs out of boredom. So, we regularly add herbs to relax the hens and provide environmental interest. It keeps them entertained and engaged, rather than indulging in unhealthy and negative behaviors.

With herbs, you can sweeten the smell of nesting boxes, repel flying insects during the summer, provide a healthy breathing environment, and more. (Just remember that herbs aren’t a magical panacea – you must keep your coop clean, and refresh your bedding weekly, and perform other good animal husbandry practices). 

We’ll dive into each of these reasons below. We’ll also cover which herbs or herb blends work for each specific reason.

First, Beware Of Nesting Herb Blends That Won’t Work

What’s not commonly understood is that herbs have specific traditional uses. Humans have sorted it out over centuries, and now there’s even studies to show how useful herbs are. Because people now know so much about herbs, we also are aware that an herbal combination can work against you.

For the best results with nesting herbs, it’s crucial to buy your flock’s nesting herbs from a safe source and to verify the herbs in the bottle are the real deal. 

Skip the grocery store because their herbs can sit around warehouses for YEARS. You can’t really know where they came from OR if they’re 100% pure. The herbs could easily be treated with chemicals (supposedly) safe for humans, but not meant for chickens to eat. 

Many times, companies will combine lesser quality herbs, or even a different species of plants. One example is cinnamon. Most cinnamon sold isn’t actually cinnamon. It’s cassia bark or a completely different herb called Chinese Cinnamon. Similar, but definitely NOT cinnamon. Cassia bark and Chinese Cinnamon don’t have the same benefits for repelling pests. 

So, make sure your herbs are USA sourced, all natural, and never synthetic or treated with any chemicals. We use these nesting herbs in our coop because we want to use all USA sourced botanicals. We want to make sure experts are consulted before a company develops a product.

Now, let’s talk about how to choose the right nesting herbs for your flock. The information below will make it very simple for you to decide on the perfect nesting herbs for your hens, and avoid blends that work against you.

What Kind Of Environment Do You Want To Create For Your Hens?

Some nesting box herbs you see on Amazon or Facebook aren’t created for a specific purpose. Usually, the herbs in these products are chosen because they’re popular and sound good. These products aren’t created by  backyard chicken experts working with herbalists or veterinarians. They’re created by anonymous companies who want to capitalize on the backyard chicken craze. 

These blends don’t have much use. You can tell because the manufacturers make many claims for a single product, such as “controls worms AND helps relax AND improves your flock’s immune system, AND controls mites” etc. 

These claims sound good. If you read between the lines, however, you’ll discover the true meaning: “We don’t know what we’re talking about, so we’ll just say what you want to hear.”

On the other hand, some nesting herb blends are created for a specific use. You can buy a blend for:

  • Pest control (such as mites)
  • Intestinal worm control
  • Supporting egg laying
  • Creating a relaxing environment
  • Adding environmental interest and joy to your coop, or
  • Immune support 

To make your decision easy, ask yourself: What do you want your new nesting herb blend to do? 

  • Do you want to support egg laying? 
  • What about controlling mites and lice? 
  • Offer respiratory support?

Figuring this out will help you decide on the perfect blend for your flock. It’ll also help you determine whether those herbs will work for you OR against you. You’ll end up with more bang for your buck, and a much less frustrating experience.

To make this point more clear, let’s look at some common situations we all need to troubleshoot in our own coops.

You Want To Support Egg Production

Supporting egg production is really, really important. It’s a very easy way to make sure your hens are as healthy as possible. If your:

  • Pullets just started laying
  • Hens return to laying after winter or a molt
  • Flock stopped laying for some unknown reason
  • Flock is super healthy already, and you just want a little extra support
  • Want to treat them to a fancy, sweet smelling nesting box 

then it’s especially important to provide something extra to help your chickens. When they just start laying, pullets (and even grown layers) don’t always make enough calcium to produce a strong eggshell. Why is this?

Creating eggs takes a lot of nutrients and energy out of your hens. She must draw the calcium from somewhere to craft her eggshells. It also takes a lot of nutrients! Luckily, providing support is easy. You can:

  • Provide oyster shells for extra calcium
  • Increase the protein in your flock’s diet
  • Add herbs to their nesting boxes for extra nutrients & to create a nice-smelling nesting area

Let’s look at the options above.

Oyster Shells

When your chicken eats oyster shells, it provides extra minerals to help her create healthy eggs. Readers frequently email me to ask why their hen laid a wrinkled, lopsided, or soft shell egg. It’s probably because the hen wasn’t getting enough essential minerals! Oyster shells are mainly made of calcium, and when your hen eats them, she can use the calcium to produce strong shells. 

Soft-shelled eggs like this can happen because your hen doesn’t eat enough calcium.

You can offer oyster shells free choice, in an herbal blend (like our blend Best Eggs Ever!), or mix with your flock’s daily feed.

Herbs To Support Egg Production

If you’re reading this article, however, you probably know about all oyster shells. And you’re probably also interested in using herbs in your coop. Luckily, you can also support your layer with herbs! Dried flowers such as:

  • calendula
  • rose
  • lavender, and
  • chamomile

can create an attractive nesting box. This is especially important if your hens aren’t using their boxes, and laying their eggs in the coop, or worse, in the dirt. (We talk more about why hens stop using nesting boxes in this article). 

It’s best to mix herbs together before adding them to the nesting box. Although a single herb will have some benefit, such as a great smell, when blended together, they’ll provide even more support.

For example:

  • Beta carotenes in calendula support nice, golden yolks. 
  • Calendula, lavender, and rose petals are soothing
  • Garlic, basil, and rosemary support healthy oviduct functions. 

While you can use any of these herbs individually, you’ll get better results if they’re blended together to provide a symphony of support (we’ve blended them together in our product, Best Eggs Ever! to make it easy.). The herbs mentioned above smell great, and have been used for centuries for these specific purposes.

You Want Your Hens To Relax And Use Their Nesting Boxes

Healthy eggs start with happy hens. If a layer is scared, stressed, or unhappy, she’ll likely stop laying eggs. For example, if a predator got into your coop, your flock might be scared. They might stop laying altogether, or simply refuse to use their boxes. They don’t feel safe!

Similarly, if your boxes are smelly, you might notice your hens prefer to lay on the ground, or worse, in a random place on your lawn. (Hello Easter egg hunt!)

 They don’t feel safe in their boxes.

How We Help Hens Who Refuse To Use Nesting Boxes

Whenever one of our chickens stops laying or refuses to use her nesting box, we first thoroughly clean the nesting area, then add herbs to their boxes. The sweet smells and bright colors get their attention, and attract our hens to their nesting boxes. 

Whenever this happens, you might consider adding herbs to attract your hens to their nesting boxes. Herbs that help your hen relax are a perfect choice.  You’ll want an herbal blend that smells great, and is irresistible to our feathered friends. 

Not every herb will do! You’ll want herbs traditionally used to create a relaxing environment. Fragrant flowers like:

  • Calendula
  • Chamomile (traditionally used to relax) 
  • Lavender (also traditionally used to relax)
  • Rose petals (great scent) 

are all great options.

Flowers or Petals?

You can use the whole flower or just the petals. Either is fine! For lavender and chamomile, I use the whole flower since they’re so small. I also use the entire calendula flower because the petals are very light, and blow away easily. The chickens can still pluck the petals off the flower.

Rose petals are a bit heavier and bulkier, so using the petals is easiest (in my option). While the whole flower is very pretty, it’s harder for chickens to pick at. The petals also look like spots of red among the other herbs, which is visually attractive to chickens. In my experience, hens are more likely to interact with rose petals versus the whole flower.

Other herbs traditionally used for relaxing include basil, rosemary (also great for purifying surfaces and the air), and clove. 

It goes without saying that it can be difficult to grow all these herbs and flowers year round. Some aren’t friendly for every gardening zone, while others take a long time to establish so you’ll have enough. You might need acres of available land to make enough of each herb. This is where nesting herb blends come in.

We use Best Eggs Ever! whenever our hens need some extra support or seem stressed. It’s easy to just add it to the bedding in our nesting boxes. It has all the herbs mentioned above.

You Need Pest Control

Will herbs stop mites from biting your chickens?

Let’s say mites are a problem in your coop. This is bad! Mites can make your chickens uncomfortable and unhealthy.

How do you know if your chickens have mites?

  • Sometimes you see them crawling on your chickens
  • There’s usually feather loss (around the vent, especially)
  • You see mite poop on your chickens. It looks like grey dirt caked onto the base of feathers (where feathers grow out of their skin)
  • Your chicken’s skin look red, dry, and irritated
  • The scales on legs are flaking off or look very bumpy (not smooth)

If you see one or more of these symptoms, you might have mites! You should take your pet to the veterinarian:

  • If you’re not sure IF they have mires OR
  • If you’re not sure what to do about it.

If you want to handle it yourself, you have some options to try:

  • A pharmaceutical solution (it’s best to speak to your vet for specific recommendations)
  • Vaseline on the legs (will be harder to implement on the rest of the body, but is good for scaly leg mites)
  • Apply diatomaceous earth or put it into their dust bathing area (good for legs and rest of body)
  • Use herbs (mix with feed, put in nesting areas, use topically, and/or sprinkle  in dust bathing areas)

Personally, I use a mixture of diatomaceous earth and herbs. Both are easy to get, and easy to apply. I use them topically, in the nesting boxes, and in the dust bath area (our blend, MitesBGone makes it really easy).

Let’s talk more about the herbs you can use.

Which herbs are good for pest control?

You want to make your hen house a healthy, fun place for your flock to hang out. You want to give nesting herbs a try. Well, you’ll need a blend that includes herbs specifically chosen to help you transform your coop.

Not all herbs are created equal, and different herbs have different uses. In this situation, calendula isn’t going to cut it. Neither will roses. Borage won’t either. 

This is why it’s SO important to not spend your hard earned dollars on a blend that’s for a variety of complaints. For example, some blends on Amazon claim they “control worms AND help relax AND improve your flock’s immune system, AND control mites” etc. I personally stay away from these nesting herbs. Like I said, herbs aren’t a panacea. It’s best to choose a blend for your specific need.

Mitesbgone nesting herbs
Adding MitesBGone to nesting boxes or dust bathing areas makes it easy to raise a healthy flock

Getting back to pest control. If you want clean, healthy nesting boxes for your layers, then you should use a nesting box blend with herbs traditionally used for to control pests on the body, and to repel them in the environment. For example, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has endorsed several herbs as safe for pest control:

  • Garlic (great for flies & mites)
  • Rosemary (great for mites)
  • Cinnamon (great for mites, ants, & flying insects)
  • Spearmint (great for mites)
  • Citronella (great for mites & flying insects)

This shouldn’t be any new information. These herbs have been traditionally used for centuries to promote a clean body and environment! The EPA is just catching up to old time, traditional knowledge. We’ve used these herbs in our coop for a long time, and they’re fantastic. 

In fact, it’s how we developed one of our products, MitesBGone! Mites don’t like these herbs! 

But before you rush to add herbs to your boxes, it’s important to remember that when the herbs in a blend are randomly chosen because they’re popular, you might not get the same results. In addition, if you look at the list above, no one herb works for every bothersome insect. 

But blended together, you can provide a clean environment for your hens. If you want to check out MitesBGone, click here for more information.

You Want Respiratory Support

We’ve all been there. The weather is questionable, your flock wants to stay inside, and YOU want to keep your flock in the best shape possible. We all know how important air quality is – ESPECIALLY during days when the weather isn’t super supportive. 

You need a blend that includes botanicals traditionally used to support a healthy breathing. 

Again, not all herbs are made equal. Some herbs can actually reduce healthy respiratory functions, or contain very small particles that can lead to lots of sneezing. 

Experts have written volumes about the best herbs to support breathing AND which herbs prevent healthy breathing. So, you choose a nesting blend that includes ONLY these herbs.

For example, I wanted to create a nesting herb blend that would support our own flock, especially during very rainy weather, winter weather, and very HOT weather (when ammonia can creep up in the coop).

I wanted to ensure my layers had only the best herbs. I consulted the experts! We wanted to make sure 100% that there’s nothing in our coop that can lead to poor respiratory support. 

We dove deep into exploring and discovering the herbs that have been used for centuries. 

We ended up choosing specific herbs for my flock that would help cleanse the air and support healthy breathing. Eventually, this mixture became our coop blend, BreatheRight, because they’re the herbs the experts recommend. 

For example, we discovered that we can support our flock with:

  • Spearmint
  • Mullein
  • Turmeric
  • Eucalyptus

These herbs have been used for centuries, across many different cultures, to support a well-ventilated and clean environment. If you inhale any mix with these herbs, you’ll know why! All these herbs work together – not against each other OR our goal of a healthy living space.

We incorporate BreatheRight Coop Herbs into our flock’s nesting box during times when we want our chickens to have extra support. You can also mix them directly into your coop bedding. Just sprinkle ½ cup in each corner, and mix to combine. 

Final Thoughts

So, there you have it! Hopefully, this article makes it easier for you to figure out which nesting herbs are best for your flock. Think about what you want nesting herbs to do for your flock, and make sure those herbs (and only those herbs) are included in the blend. It’s easy to find “any old nesting box herbs,” but it’s very important to discover a product for the specific problem you want to solve. If you;d like to learn more about any of the herb blends we mentioned in this article, just click here.

4 Ingredient Chamomile & Black Soldier Fly Larvae “Granola”

4 Ingredient Chamomile & Black Soldier Fly Larvae “Granola”

Who doesn’t love chamomile? I do, you do, and I guarantee your chickens do!

 

And chamomile is the star of Chamomile & Black Soldier Fly Larvae “Granola.”

 

And I tell you, hens LOVE this treat! My hens love digging in and testing each bit!

 

German chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) is wonderful for hens because, as you probably know, it has qualities that help hens relax.

 

And since relaxation and a sense of security is important to getting the best eggs possible out of your hens, you can imagine how important chamomile is to your herbal medicine chest!

Chamomile & Black Soldier Fly Larvae “Granola” backyard chicken treat

 

 

This treat is a great go-to recipe if your chickens are nervous (if a hawk was flying above or the neighbors dog came over for a “visit”), and you want them to come out of their hiding places, relax, and feel safe again.

 

You can find chamomile to buy in the shop right here, and it’s the exact same herbs that I used in this recipe.

 

Corn is also a big part of this treat, and my hens have a ball poking around and trying to find every last kernel!

 

You can use dried ground, chopped, or whole corn kernels. If you do use whole kernels (which chickens love, by the way), the recipe adjusts slightly.

 

 

 

Although I haven’t tried, if you add egg and water, you can probably make this into “cornmeal muffins” your hens will adore.

 

This recipe also features our old friend, dried black soldier fly larvae, which hens also love! (As if I had to remind you!)

 

If you don’t have black soldier fly larvae on hand, mealworms or any other dried insect are a great substitute. Mine go bonkers for both.

 

I’ve included kale in Chamomile & Black Soldier Fly Larvae “Granola” because kale has lots of great vitamins and minerals for chickens.

 

Plus, hens love greens! You can use either fresh or freeze dried kale. We usually go for freeze dried kale because the nutrient content is still high AND it’s shelf stable.

 

A treat like this is perfect before bedtime if it’s winter in your area or as a mid-day treat when the days aren’t too hot – so perfect for spring.

 

All you need to do is put out a bowl with the “granola” in it and let your chickens have at it.

 

I hope your hens enjoy this as much as mine do!

 

Chamomile & Black Soldier Fly Larvae “Granola” for chickens

How To Make Chamomile & Black Soldier Fly Larvae “Granola.”

 

Ingredients (per chicken):

¼ c dried, Non-GMO Corn (ground, chopped) — use ½ cup if whole corn kernels

Chamomile – 2 tbsp (Buy in my store here)

Black Soldier Fly Larvae – ¼ cup (Buy in my store here)

Kale – ¼  cup  — use freeze dried or fresh kale

 

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a chicken-safe dish. You can scatter the “granola” to make sure each hen gets a bite. Smaller flocks can eat out of the bowl together.

 

This isn’t a replacement for their regular feed, and should be part of a complete diet.

 

It’s a hit!

Best Eggs Ever! Backyard Chicken Treat

Best Eggs Ever! Backyard Chicken Treat

It’s spring, and yes, the hens are starting to lay again! Which means I get extra concerned about the quality of the eggs they lay.

 

Improving the egg quality a hen lays has been the subject of many studies.

 

The egg industry, after all, is concerned about getting as many eggs as possible, and researchers are concerned about the overall health of the eggs laid so people don’t eat contaminated food.

 

This week’s recipe includes some of the best herbs and other supplements you can give your hens to improve egg quality – and that’s why I’ve called it Best Eggs Ever!™.

 

Apple Cider Vinegar, Garlic, & Oregano For Healthier Eggs

You’ll notice something interesting in Best Eggs Ever!™, which is the Apple Cider Vinegar granules.

 

If you’ve never heard of ACV granules, it’s really neat stuff: It’s raw apple cider vinegar that has been dehydrated.

 

In studies, chickens fed apple cider vinegar, were healthier, grew better, and the eggs they laid had lower amounts of pathogens such as salmonella and campylobacter.

 

Similarly, when they used oregano around their chickens and in the feed, industrial egg farms found that the chickens were healthier and less likely to get sick.

 

Garlic is also included in Best Eggs Ever!™ because one of the chemical constituents in garlic – allicin – has been shown in studies to improve immune systems and can ward off mites in backyard chickens.

 

While fresh garlic is great to add to your flock’s water, granulated garlic is the perfect supplement to their regular feed because it can be mixed easier and the hens are more likely to eat it. Sometimes they miss fresh garlic if it’s not in their water.

Oyster Shells for Better Eggshells

If you want to make sure your girls lay nice, strong eggshells, then oyster shells are where it’s at!

 

All the calcium in them will give your hens the calcium they need so they lay healthy eggshells WITHOUT pulling the calcium from their own bones – which they might do if they aren’t getting enough calcium in their diet.

 

Oyster shells = better quality of life!

 

I’ve found that when the oyster shells are mixed with other yummy treats for my hens, they’re more likely to eat it.

 

Yes, they’ll eat it separately also, but they get wrapped up in the goodies, and down more of the calcium when it’s mixed.

 

If you don’t have oyster shells on hand, then feel free to substitute crushed eggshells.

 

Calendula for Better Yolks

You can see here the difference between a farm fresh egg from hens fed calendula and one from the store.

 

Calendula has a lot of beta carotene in it, which is super healthy for your hens AND will give you those golden yolks you’ve been dreaming of.

 

That’s why it’s a natural to be included in this recipe! (It also smells HEAVENLY which is an added bonus!)

 

Lavender & Chamomile for A Relaxed Hen

Hens that are relaxed lay easier and better – and they’re overall healthier than hens who are stressed (and they lay eggs with stronger, more regular shells, rather than wrinkled or abnormal eggs).

 

Hens also love to nibble on flowers & of course, they enjoy the scent! You can line your nesting boxes with lavender and chamomile, and they’re also great to include in their diet!

 

Are you ready to make Best Eggs Ever!™??? Here’s the recipe!

 

Best Eggs Ever!™

Ingredients

¼ c Calendula (buy in the store here)

¼ c Lavender (buy in the store here)

1/4 c Rose Buds (buy in the store here)

¼ c Alfalfa

¼ c Chamomile (buy in the store here)

¼ tsp granulated Garlic (buy in the store here)

¼ tsp Apple Cider Vinegar granules (buy in the store here)

1 tbsp Oregano (buy in the store here)

1 tbsp Parsley (buy in the store here)

1 tbsp Oyster Shells

 

Directions

Mix all ingredients together and serve as part of a complete diet. You can feed separately or with their regular layer feed. Feed Best Eggs Ever!™ to layers and adult roosters.

 

Pepitas & Chamomile Whole Grain Protein Mix

Pepitas & Chamomile Whole Grain Protein Mix

This week’s recipe is one of my hen’s favorites (just watch the video below!) and yours will love it, too.

 

This time of year, it’s important to make sure your hens have enough protein and calcium in their diet so they produce healthy, strong eggshells as the return to laying.

 

That’s why today’s treat features some high-protein seeds and insects, as well as dried eggshells, which are bursting with calcium.

 

You might have heard that eggshells can turn your hens into egg eaters, and honestly, if the shells are raw, there’s a possibility that might happen.

 


Have a hen that love her herbs? (Who doesn’t?!)

nesting box herbs

Yes, I want nesting herbs for my spoiled hens!


 

I know on our farm, we’ve had some egg eaters, and they started out as opportunists.

 

Meaning that they wouldn’t have tried eating their eggs, except one cracked one day, and they realized there was something delicious in there.

 

Chickens are SMART. (I know, because I tried swapping black soldier fly larvae one day for a different, non-insect treat, and Lagertha looked at me like I grew a second head!)

 

Now, this isn’t to say that if all hens eat raw egg shells, they WILL turn into egg eaters. Of course, we can’t make blanket statements like that.

 

However, I personally err on the side of caution, and try to toast eggshells before feeding them as often as possible.

 

All you need to do is clean them off and allow them to toast in the oven at about 200 degrees for about 10 minutes, or until dry. It’s very easy!

 

Please just make sure that you crush them to tiny fragments. They might have sharp edges and you don’t want your flock getting micro-abrasions or possibly choking!

 

 

Remember, if you want, you can always grind them in a spice blender after they’ve been toasted.

 

I love the pumpkin seeds in this treat as well, and the pumpkin seeds, also known as “pepitas” in Spanish, are said to help prevent worms.

 

Technically, “pepitas” are the seeds without the shells. While chickens can and WILL eat both, if you have the shell-less variety, that’s the one to use, since they’re easier to digest, and the nutrients will be more bioavailable.

 

The jury is still out whether the pepitas actually DO anything to prevent worms in chickens, but it’s one of those “can’t hurt, might help” ingredients, and chickens LOVE the little tear-dropped shaped seeds.

 

The chia is another great ingredient for spring. As you probably know, chia has cleansing properties, and might help clear any toxins, potential blockages, etc from your flock’s digestive system.

 

You want your hens’ little bodies to be in tip top shape for spring, right? Well, chia seeds it is, then! (And it helps that hens love poking around, looking for the tiny black seeds!)

 

This recipe does call for non-GMO, organic ingredients, but if you don’t have access to organic, non-gmo ingredients, particularly wheat and corn, don’t worry – it’s okay to swap it out with what you do have.

 

Your hens will love it all the same.

 

 

In fact, as I prepared to take the photos for this article, Rooster Teeth looked on – and got VERY excited when she saw the big bowl of goodies!

 

She takes her role of “Chief Treat Tester” VERY seriously!

 

As with all my chicken treat recipes, you should also feel free to include your own ingredients if you want to make substitutions.

 

For example, mealworms would be a great substitution for the black soldier fly larvae, and you can easily use calendula in place of chamomile!

 

Have fun with your flock!

 

Pepitas & Chamomile High Protein Mix

 

Ingredients

¼ cup Pumpkin Seeds

2 tablespoons Chia Seeds

1 tablespoon crushed Eggshells

¼ cup Dried Chamomile (you can buy it here)

¼ cup Black Soldier Fly Larvae (You can buy them here.)

¼ cup Organic, non-GMO Corn

¼ cup Organic, Non-GMO Wheat Berries

 

Directions

Wash, dry, and lightly toast the eggshells at 200 degrees for about 10 minutes. Crush them thoroughly so your hens can swallow them.

 

Combine the eggshells with the remaining ingredients, and have fun watching your hens gobble it down!

 


Have a hen that loves her herbs? (Who doesn’t?!)

nesting box herbs

Yes, I have a spoiled hen who wants nesting herbs!