Herbs for Healthy Hens

One morning, whilst feeding the chickens their breakfast, Lacy pooped by my feet and the poop was wriggling and writhing. I’m not a scatologist, but I knew this wasn’t normal.

Lacy and Spacey eat the yoghurt, garlic herb medicine.

Worms = nasty!

But free ranging chickens get worms, so this isn’t the most interesting part of my story.

Interesting Part of My Story:

I have recently acquired a new chicken. She is a Giant White Jersey called Lady Leone – I’ll introduce her formally when I’ve managed to take photos. With the introduction of Lady Leone to my small flock, I decided to give my hens an ‘immune system boost’.

There had been no previous evidence of worms, my black sex links seemed healthy, were laying eggs and acting normally. I made them a herb-based health tonic purely as a preventative measure.

My concoction was rosemary, basil, cilantro, garlic and yoghurt – these herbs chosen simply because they were what I had in the greenhouse.

The very next day Lacy bottom-birthed four long white wriggling worms, an invading army of roundworms. I was so shocked that I didn’t even take a picture.

Right there and then, as the nasty things still squirmed by my feet, I became an instant convert to Hen-Health-by-Herbs:

Health Properties of Herbs:

Basil – antibacterial, mucus membrane health

Catnip – sedative, insecticide

Cilantro – antioxidant, fungicide, builds strong bones, high in Vitamin A for vision and Vitamin K for blood clotting

Dill – antioxidant, relaxant, respiratory health

Fennel -laying stimulant

Garlic – laying stimulant

Lavender – stress reliever, increases blood circulation, highly aromatic, insecticide

Lemon Balm – stress reliever, antibacterial, highly aromatic, rodent repellent

Marigold – laying stimulant

Marjoram – lay stimulant

Mint (all kinds) – insecticide and rodent repellent

Nasturtium – laying stimulant, antiseptic, antibiotic, insecticide, wormer

Oregano – combats coccidia, salmonella, infectious bronchitis, avian flu, blackhead and e-coli

Parsley – high in vitamins, aids in blood vessel development, laying stimulant

Peppermint – anti-parasitic, insecticide

Pineapple Sage – aids nervous system, highly aromatic

Rose Petals – highly aromatic, high in Vitamin C

Rosemary – pain relief, respiratory health, insecticide

Sage – antioxidant, anti-parasitic

Spearmint – antiseptic, insecticide, stimulates nerve, brain and blood functions

Tarragon – antioxidant

Thyme – respiratory health, antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-parasitic

(I found this at www.grit.com)

I’ve read elsewhere that garlic is a good natural dewormer, so I’ve made that a mainstay of my health-tonic and I mix in any herbs I have at the time. This week they got a good dose of mint. The good thing is my hens love it, so I think garlic, herbs and yoghurt will continue to be a weekly treat.

Note: so far no more worm sightings, but I’m on a close lookout.

 

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Coop Poop says:

    Thank you so much for the herb tips! I hope I don’t see worms….but if I do…Congrats on your flock!!

  2. If you have herbs you can just throw them in the bedding and the hens will peck away at them, plus they smell nice, plus some of them are insect/external parasite repellents…

    As for the flock – I’ve got a surprise especially for you…. (will post soon).

    1. Coop Poop says:

      which fresh herbs do your chickens like the most and do you cut them for them?

      1. All my herbs are little more than seedlings at the moment, so variety hasn’t been great. They seem to love mint in their bedding and basil straight from the pot (nb: unpopular chickens). I really want to test them out on Oregano as that seems to be a wonder herb, but it’ll have to wait for some spring growth… I’ve read that Nasturtium is awesome for worm-free health.

        1. Coop Poop says:

          Thanks for the herb tips! ~ I’m going to try and sprout some wheat grass this winter and see how they like that, since they won’t be able to forage much once the snow sticks..

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