Can Ducks Safely Eat Lavender Expert Essential Feeding Tips

Updated: 21 Mar 2024


When it comes to enhancing the living area of our feathered friends, incorporating lavender into their diet might seem like an unconventional choice. However, the question often arises: Can ducks eat lavender?

The answer is a resounding Yes. Lavender, contrary to being toxic, serves as the opposite with its soothing scent and rich in antioxidants properties.

It’s more than just a good flower; it’s a flowering plant revered across world cultures as a holy herb, known to improve health significantly.

Yet, it’s crucial to acknowledge that ducks can’t solely live on lavender. Their diet needs to be well-rounded, with lavender acting as a unique complement to their nutritional intake.

Can Ducks Eat Lavender?

The inquiry of whether ducks can safely consume lavender and other herbs without facing severe health issues stems from a curiosity to enrich their diet while ensuring their well-being.

Lavender, known for its relaxation benefits and mild significance in aroma, not only calms but also deters insects—a powerful property due to components like linalool and linalyl acetate.

These components contribute to its strong flavoring and medicinal uses, making it a candidate for clearing chicken coops of pests. However, when discussing lavender oil, it’s crucial to avoid it as it contains essential oils that can disturb the respiratory and nervous systems of ducks.

Lavender for Ducks Eating

The safest forms of lavender come as fresh or properly dried plants, which can be directly added to their feed or water supply without causing digestive upsets or worse, death if ingested in moderation.

When planning to use lavender as a herbal remedy for illness or injury, or simply to enhance the diet of your flock, it’s essential to follow directions carefully, especially when preparing and administering it in its dried form.

My personal experience in sharing my garden and yard with my ducks has taught me that they gonna be alright with occasional lavender as part of their food. It’s a practice I’ve adopted not just for the benefits it brings to my flock, but also for the enjoyment they seem to derive from these plants.

Precautions are necessary, as overdoses can lead to health issues, but with moderation, adding fresh or dried lavender to their diet can offer a unique herbal addition to their feeding plan, without the risks associated with essential oils.

This approach not only keeps my ducks healthy but also allows my young ones to safely visit and enjoy the garden without worry.

Do Ducklings Eat Lavender?

Introducing lavender to ducklings raises concerns due to their sensitive developing digestive system. While certain herbs are toxic to ducks, such as milkweed, nightshade, pennyroyal, vetch, and others, lavender is safe for both ducks and ducklings to eat.

However, caution is advised due to their voracious appetites; consuming excessive amounts of any plant, including lavender, can make them sick. The upper digestion tract, particularly the proventriculus and esophagus, is especially sensitive in young ducks.

As a poultry farmer or pet owner, it’s crucial to ensure that ducklings start with the right starter feed, rich in protein and niacin, essential for their growth.

A small portion of lavender, introduced after they are older than two weeks, can be safe and beneficial, helping them to naturally munch on weeds in the yard while avoiding dangerous plants.

Despite the safe status of lavender, it’s vital to avoid feeding it to ducklings younger than two weeks old due to the risk of impacting their hydration and warmth levels; they can easily become dehydrated or die from hypothermia if not properly cared for.

If you notice any issues, taking steps to save their life is critical. On a broader scale, while certain plants are poisonous to humans and animals if consumed in large amounts, causing symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea, lavender remains a safe and natural pesticide for the garden.

Using lavender to keep pests away by placing it as a barrier around the nest box or in areas with access by the young can not only protect your garden but also provide a safe environment for baby ducks to explore and grow.

Benefits of Lavender For Ducks:

Benefits of Lavender For Ducks:

Lavender herbs used for culinary purpose. It is a natural remedy for ducks as well. Lavender make ducks healthy and happy. Some benefits for ducks are as follows:

Antibacterial Properties:

Lavender’s antibacterial properties offer a shield against infections, making it a perfect solution for treating wounds not only in humans but in animals as well.

Its ability to kill bacteria, and reduce inflammation, pain, and swelling in the affected area acts as a first line of defense, preventing bacteria from invading open or broken skin on a duck’s body.

While lavender oil should be used with caution due to its potency, the plant in its natural form can be a safe and effective way to protect your ducks from potential infections, especially when they are exploring the outdoors where they are more susceptible to wounds.

Anti-Inflammatory Properties

The anti-inflammatory properties of lavender are equally effective in fighting swelling associated with injuries or infections. This is crucial in managing causes of redness, heat, and tenderness in injured areas.

For ducks, these properties are useful in reducing discomfort and preventing further damage to their bodies. By incorporating lavender into their environment or diet, you’re providing them with a natural remedy that helps manage inflammation, ensuring they remain comfortable and healthy.

Protection From Pests:

Lavender’s ability to repel bugs, fleas, and other pests is a beneficial trait for maintaining a healthy duck flock. Ducks that are often bothered by pests during the warmer months of summer can find relief and protection when their living spaces include lavender plants.

This natural repellent keeps the ducks happy and healthy as they spend their time active outside or pond, making lavender an indispensable ally in ensuring the well-being of your flock during those pest-heavy seasons.

Other Nutrients Duck Can Eat:

Other Nutrients Duck Can Eat:


Parts and Types of Lavender for Ducks: What’s Safest?

Ducks can eat different parts of lavender to meet their requirements and nutrients. Some common types of lavender they eat are as follows.

Lavender Leaves:

Ducks can technically nibble on English lavender leaves, but it’s not recommended as their primary feed. While medicinal and edible for humans, these leaves don’t offer the same benefits to ducks and might cause upset stomach or digestion problems. It’s better to let ducks enjoy other parts of their diet that are more suited to their digestive systems.

Lavender Stem:

The woody stem of the lavender plant is non-toxic but herbaceous, meaning it’s safe if ducks decide to forage on it, yet it provides no significant nutrients. Birds generally don’t need to eat the stem as it offers little nutritional value and could be better replaced with more beneficial parts of their diet.

Lavender Roots:

It’s best to leave the lavender roots alone when considering diet options for ducks. Like the stems, the roots hold insignificance in terms of nutritional value compared to other parts of the herb or lavender that ducks might eat.

Lavender Flowers:

Ducks indeed enjoy eating lavender flowers, which are not only attractive but also offer health benefits. When grown near the coop, they can provide relaxation benefits to both ducks and chickens. However, it’s important to ensure they eat these in moderation to avoid the risk of an overdose.

Dried Lavender:

It’s okay for ducks to consume a very small amount of dried lavender, as it can be a healthy treat, especially in springtime. Mixing dried lavender with sunflower seeds and dried mealworms makes for a safe and nutritious snack. Fresh or dried parsley can also be added to diversify their diet with safe, beneficial herbs.

How Often and How Much Do Ducks Eat Lavender?

When it comes to ducks consuming lavender, moderation is key. This perennial herb that grows in temperate climates and blooms in late spring to summer with purple flowers has various uses, from cooking to medicine, and even as an essential oil.

However, when feeding it to ducks, it’s crucial to understand that while lavender is safe for humans to consume, ducks have different digestive systems.

Owners should give it in small quantities, ideally chopped and mixed into a feed salad, to prevent any potential digestive issues like diarrhea if too much is consumed at one time. The safest way to incorporate lavender into their diet is as a part of a balanced diet, alongside their regular meals and other healthy treats.

It’s recommended not to feed ducks lavender more than once or twice a week, ensuring it remains a special treat rather than a staple of their diet.

This approach not only prevents potential health issues but also maintains the benefit to their health without overdoing it. Lavender can be a natural remedy for stress relief in ducks, much like it is for people, but the amount fed should be limited.

Remember, while lavender contains minimal calories and can be good for ducks, their primary nutrition should come from commercial feed designed for their specific dietary needs.

Integrating lavender as a food flavoring agent or part of a salad mix can add variety and interest to their diet, promoting overall health.

How to Feed Lavender to Ducks

Introducing lavender to ducks can be a great addition to their diets, but it comes with its limitations. Despite their curious nature, ducks can’t possibly eat an entire bush of lavender, nor should they.

The plant provides beautiful uses as an ornamental flower in the garden and has been valued for its essential oils. When feeding lavender to ducks, it’s important to pick a few branches, wash them thoroughly, and then mix them into their quality commercial feeds.

This method not only keeps the lavender fresh but also ensures that ducks get a nice taste of it in a way that’s safe and enjoyable for them to eat.

Be mindful to keep an eye on how much they consume; like anything beyond their real food, too much lavender can make them feel sick, especially if it replaces essential nutrients found in their regular diet.

For those looking to add a bit of variety, dried lavender leaves can be a nice complement to their feed mixture, offering a different way to enjoy eating this herb.

It’s easy to grow and provides a method that works best without the need for additives or preservatives in their food. When it comes to specific amounts, it is recommended to feed ducks 1-2 tablespoons of dried lavender per day, depending on their size and appetite.

This method allows ducks to please their palate safely, integrating the plant options they can eat on their own with those you give them, ensuring a balanced and enriching diet.


Lavender can be a safe and beneficial addition to a duck’s diet when offered in moderation and in the correct form. Fresh or dried, lavender provides health benefits such as stress relief and pest repellent, without the risks associated with toxic plants.

It’s important to integrate it thoughtfully into their regular diet to ensure it complements their nutritional needs without overwhelming them.

Nouman Ali

Nouman Ali

I'm delighted to introduce myself as the voice behind the diverse array of insights and information you'll find here. With a passion for animals that spans over eight years, I've immersed myself in the fascinating world of pets, exploring their lifestyles, behaviors, and unique needs. Growing up surrounded by various animals, I developed an innate curiosity and deep connection with our furry, feathered, and scaly friends. This early fascination ignited a lifelong journey of learning and understanding the intricacies of pet care. Over the years, I've had the privilege of sharing my knowledge and experiences with fellow pet enthusiasts through various platforms. Whether it's offering tips on nutrition, behavior training, or health management, my goal has always been to empower pet owners to provide the best possible care for their beloved companions.

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