Keeping Chickens Naturally

I recently visited with Lisa Steele, author and 5th generation chicken keeper, to glean information from her on how she keeps her flock healthy and antibiotic-free. She provided me with her recipe and several of my poultry fans have asked, so I’m paying it forward!

Adding probiotics to your feed keep your chickens natural has so many benefits, including boosting their immune systems and aiding in respiratory problems. Additionally, it’s an inexpensive and easy way to keep tabs on what your flock is taking in. She recommends these steps for keeping your flock – chickens and ducks of all ages – healthy, the natural way.

You’ll need the following ingredients for the water:

Garlic (cloves) – wards off mites and lice and boosts immune health

Apple cider vinegar – balances PH, boosts digestive health, and cleans water clear of bacteria

You’ll need the following ingredients for the feed:

Garlic powder

Probiotic powder – boosts digestive health and helps the body absorb nutrients

Food grade diatomaceous earth – helps keep bugs out of feed and adds nutrients


Add 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar and 1 clove of garlic per gallon of water (added 2 – 3 times per week with water change).

Layer feed with half a cup of garlic powder per gallon, half a cup of probiotics, and food grade diatomaceous earth.

See the recipe in action here