Deworming chickens naturally can be quite simple.
If your chickens free range at all you can assume they will get worms. Even if they don’t free range it’s highly likely they will get worms at some point in their life. It’s just part of being outside. So what do you do? We have tried multiple ways to rid our flock of worms. We’ve bought low dollar dewormer from the farm store (causing us to throw out eggs). After that, we switched to high dollar dewormer, which allowed us to not go without eggs, but still put chemicals into our bird’s bodies. While both of those worked well, we didn’t have the money to spend on expensive medicine nor did we want our flock to have any chemical based products in their environment.
What options did we have for deworming chickens naturally?
Well, there’s a couple of possibilities. Any squash plant you may have on hand is great for deworming chickens naturally. Pumpkins, spaghetti squash, and maybe even yellow squash and zucchini might work, but we found we only had these on hand in the fall. Our girls needed deworming every month.
Our favorite and most effective option is using diatomaceous earth, also known as DE. Please know this is a very controversial product. It is a natural element in nature. It looks like dirt, but in fact is silica. The way it works is by slicing through any creature that has an exoskeleton (aka worms and most shelled creatures). Lots of farmers and homesteaders use it in the garden, on trees and in strawberry patches to help control unwanted slugs and insects.
The reason this is controversial is because some say if it kills worms and the like, imagine what it is doing to a chicken’s intestines? While that’s a valid point, I’d stand to argue that a chicken’s gut is not made up of an exoskeleton. There are many resources available to prove a chicken is a skeletal being.
In our opnion, diatomaceous earth is great for deworming chickens naturally.
Before you just run out and buy this product you need to be aware of one thing. You MUST buy FOOD GRADE diatomaceous earth. This ensures there are only natural elements in it and that it is safe to ingest.
We mix DE in our flock’s feed at the first of every month. In a five gallon bucket of feed, we mix one quart of DE. We first pour the DE into the feed bucket. Then, we stir it all in until it is fully incorporated. Once everything is blended we take it to the feeders and let the birds go to town! As they ingest their feed, the DE will naturally work in their gut killing any parasites that have an exoskeleton. The bird then passes their waste and any worms or parasites that lingered in their tract are now dead and gone.
If you’ve been looking for a natural alternative to deworming your chickens, we hope you will give this a try!
~Until next time,
Have you used diatomaceous earth for deworming chickens naturally?