The "Miracle Cure" to everything for your Poultry
Apple Cider Vinegar (or ACV for short) has long been hailed as a miracle cure for everything in the poultry world.
It does have numerous health benefits and supports the immune system. Since I have started using ACV I have noticed a big difference in the health of my flock and now recommend it to all poultry keepers.
ACV is certainly full of vitamins, minerals and trace elements. It helps to lower the pH level in the stomach, helping digestion and making it a less friendly for harmful pathogens. ACV detoxifies the blood and helps remove mucous from within the body, this is particularly useful since chickens are particularly prone to respiratory problems and ACV can be of benefit in helping birds to clear their airways (especially for ex batts & ex barn hens who have inhaled all sorts of foul bugs from within their sheds prior to rescue).
Due to the acid content of ACV, it is an antiseptic. As well as killing germs, it is also a mild antibiotic as well, (that is, it contains bacteria that destroy infectious organisms).
Some claims have been made that ACV increases egg production. Whilst I can't find any studies that prove this, it would still make sense that if you are keeping a hen in good health, she will perform better and our own hens do seem to be laying very well.
ACV, can be found in health shops and many poultry / equine shops / outlets will sell bottles of it. Ours is by Wendals herbs and was from the Equine section of our feed supplier.
How to give ACV to chickens.
We use between 10-20 ml per litre of water. Remember ACV is acidic and you should only put it into plastic water containers to prevent corrosion (DO NOT put in galvanised drinkers). I normally do this for a week every month - the first week of the month so that I remember which one!
I also add a daily scoop of garlic powder during this same week to their food.