Chickens are the most common and widely raised birds around the globe. But did you know? Most of present domestic chickens are from wild birds which are also know as jungle fowl. About 7,500 years ago in Asia, humans first started raising jungle fowl as domestic birds. Humans domesticated jungle fowl as the are a great source of nutritious food. And still now, chickens are the most popular birds throughout the world with a wide variety of breeds and their special characteristics. Despite the ubiquity of the domestic chickens, there are many wild chickens as well that you can raise on your flock. Specifically the feral chickens and jungle fowl. But you may thinking, what do wild chickens eat?
What Do Wild Chickens Eat
Usually wild chickens eat grass, worms or worm eggs, various types of insects and various types of plants, fruits, seeds and vegetables such as berries, fruits, nuts, bamboo seeds, young leaves etc. Wild chickens are omnivores and they will eat almost everything they will find edible by scratching in the soil.
It is believed that, domestic chickens were originated from the wild red jungle fowl. And all the red jungle fowl were forager.
They vigorously scratches the soil of forest for searching food. As they are omnivores, they will eat almost everything that they will find edible such as insects, worms, seeds, berries, small animals and even reptiles. Feral chickens that are living with humans can also forage on discarded human food.
Insects & Invertebrates
Wild chickens like to eat various types of insects and invertebrates very much. And it is the staple of the wild chicken’s diet. Winged ants and termites are the preferred insects of wild chickens. They usually forage on at dusk and at dawn for searching termites and winged ants. Not only wild chickens but also other birds love to eat termites as it is rich in protein and fat. While scratching the ground of jungle, wild chickens also consume various types of invertebrates such as earthworms.
Wild chickens eat a wide variety of plant matter foraged from the jungle ground which include fruits, berries, young leaves, seeds and various types of edible plant matter that are available in their environment. Bamboo seeds are available in the jungle and it is one of the preferred plant based foods for wild chickens. They also like tiny seeds. They scratch relentlessly for finding this type of tiny seeds in the jungle.
In some locations wild chickens get a portion of their daily food from humans. Bread, popcorn and other human foods have entered the wild chicken’s diet. Kitchen and other human food wastes also good diet for feral chickens.
In a word, as wild chickens are omnivores so they will eat almost everything that they find in front of them, which include almost all types of insects and plant matter.