Benefits of Cider Vinegar, Garlic, and Poultry Spice to a Smallholder
Some of my hens are moulting, and today I gave them some things that I feel will help them to replace their feathers, and maximise their health, going in to winter. I don’t mind a drop in egg production over the winter because I think it gives them a bit of a rest, and helps them to stay strong over the long dark, cold, damp days till spring.
The hens seem to stay in their sheds more over winter, and particularly during a cold spell when the ground is frozen or covered in snow. They therefore have less access to minerals and food that they would normally consume whilst out free ranging in the field or woodland.
Apple Cider Vinegar is an age old product beloved by many traditional chicken keepers to promote all round health and vitality in poultry (and many other animals).
What does it do?
- Aids digestion, helping to break down minerals and fats and assists the bird to assimulate proteins and convert food better.
- Lowers the Ph of the digestive tract, rendering it to be 90% less welcoming to Pathogens.
- Provides a natural source of Potassium and other important trace minerals. Helps to improve fertility and general well being.
- Depresses the growth of Algae in the drinker (use only in a plastic drinker).
- Helps clean the plumage of grease and old bloom, when used in baths. Hence is excellent for show birds.
- Clears respiratory tracts
- Can also be used to treat minor wounds and skin irritations (at a dose of no more than 1 part to 10)
- cleans feeding and drinking equipment and is often sprayed into and around housing as a very effective fly and insect deterrent.
- will help chickens with stress which is one of the main contributors to their immune system lowering and letting in disease
How much do I use?
- Moving house
- Introducing new birds or mixing up the pecking order
- If snow falls on the ground (a stressful change in environment for chickens)
- After a fright – e.g. fox or dog attack
- After injury