Yes, ducks can eat basil. It contains vitamins, calcium, fiber, and other beneficial nutritional content for your feathered friends. Basil can also repel pests, bugs, and rodents from your flock’s coop and run. However, only feed your ducks’ basil in moderation.
Is it Good for Ducks?
Thanks to its aromatic scent, basil has remained a popular ingredient in teas and foods all over the globe for decades. If you’re into gardening, you’ll most likely love to have this herb in your garden.
All you need is well-drained soil and a warm environment for your basil plants to flourish. In case you’re running out of space in your yard, you can also plant it in a pot on a window sill.
There are different types of basil including sweet basil, cinnamon basil, and Greek basil. As you can easily tell from their names, they each have their own flavor and are used for various dishes.
Generally, basil is perfectly safe for ducks to eat. It doesn’t have any toxic components that can potentially cause health problems for your birds.
It’s worth keeping in mind that excessively feeding basil to your flock will result in health issues, however. A bulk of their diet should be quality commercial feed but you still have room to feed them healthy treats like basil.
Sprinkling some basil in your ducks’ coop, run and nesting box, or hanging some will help keep pests and rodents at bay. They dislike the pungent smell from basil and this is thus a good natural solution you can deploy in place of artificially-made products.
Health Benefits of Basil to Ducks
Basil is generally used to add flavor to food but it’s much more than that. It contains a good range of nutrients that will benefit your ducks if consumed. Here are some positive effects that basil has on their health:
Boost in immunity – Basil contains antioxidants that will help prevent cellular damage by harmful particles. Its extract is also antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, and antiviral. This means that your ducks will be protected from a variety of common poultry illnesses.
Improved digestion – Basil has a good amount of fiber. Ducks are likely to have digestive issues like constipation and diarrhea considering that they eat just about anything they come across. Feeding them basil will help alleviate some of these issues.
Enhanced vision – Basil is rich in Vitamin A which makes their eyesight better especially in darkness.
Strong Bones – Basil is high in Vitamin K and Calcium, which will help your birds develop healthy strong bones.
Better respiratory health – Basil and herbs, in general, have for many decades been used for medicinal purposes. Given that ducks are prone to respiratory problems particularly in winter, feeding them this herb as well as having some around them will go a long way in preventing these issues.
How to Feed your Ducks Basil
There are a number of ways to feed basil to your ducks. The easiest way is to let them loose in your backyard garden where they can eat the leaves directly from the plants.
You can also harvest fresh basil from your garden or buy some from your local store, chop them up into small pieces and add them to your ducks’ feeders. Just remember to give them a quick wash before feeding them to your birds to get rid of any pesticide residues and soil particles.
The other way is to mix dried basil and mix it with quality commercial feed. Dry basil has a better concentration of nutrients in comparison to fresh basil.
Do Ducks like Basil?
No, ducks don’t like basil. I’ve asked a number of duck owners about their experiences feeding this herb to their flock and most of them said their birds gave them a pass. So, if your ducks show no interest in consuming basil, don’t worry.
Can Baby Ducks Eat Basil?
Baby ducks can eat basil, yes. Basil leaves are soft and once cut into smaller pieces, they’re unlikely to choke your ducklings if ingested.
Can Ducks Eat Basil Stems, Flowers, and Seeds?
Yes, ducks can eat basil stems, flowers, and seeds. I haven’t found any evidence to suggest that they may have toxins that can pose serious health risks to them. So, don’t panic about feeding your flock any of these parts.
What Other Herbs Can Ducks Eat?
There are other herbs that your ducks can benefit from eating. Here are some that are safe for them:
Summary – Can Ducks Eat Basil?
Basil is fine for ducks to eat. All parts are safe for them to gobble up. Most ducks don’t like basil but those that do will have better digestion and immunity, stronger bones, and other benefits it offers.
Image Credit: Images by S. Hermann & F. Richter, Monicore, Mariya 🌸🌺🌼 from Pixabay