Can Ducks Eat Peanuts? (Answered)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

If you have ducks as pets, or you keep them for their eggs, then one thing you probably think about is their feeding.

Can ducks eat peanuts? Yes, ducks can eat peanuts but you have to grind them. If they eat whole peanuts, they have difficulties digesting large nuts and seeds. Some can get stuck in the duck’s crop because they swallow food as a whole.

Peanuts are a good source of protein and carbs. But they should be fed when they are ground to fine pieces or paste.

It can be frustrating searching for answers to the safe and toxic treats of duck.

Ducks are omnivorous poultry birds. This article answers all questions on what you should and should not feed the duck.

What is the Nutritional Value of Peanuts?

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Peanuts are legumes full of proteins, fats, and dietary fiber.

They are also known as groundnuts, earthnuts, and goobers.

Their origin is traced to South America.  Below is the nutritional value found in peanuts.

1. It contains proteins

Peanuts are full of proteins and the total calories, 22 to 30% of the calories are protein in content.

Ducks, like other poultry birds, do not need direct protein.

Ducks need amino acids available in dietary proteins.

When ducks eat food high in protein, the protein is converted to amino acids during digestion.

Hence, these amino acids get absorbed in the duck body to make its protein. The protein is used to strengthen the muscles and feathers.

Is there any protein deficiency?

Yes, duck can get protein-deficiency if the feeds contain few proteins.

This can make the ducks weak thus develop several infections.

Still, less protein can cause the duck not to grow well.

Their meat production is affected and their egg-laying process is affected.

2. It contains fats

The fat content is 44 to 56% of the total calories.

These fats are poly and monosaturated.

This high-fat content is the reason why peanuts should be rationed when being fed to ducks.

Too much fat makes the duck obese.

Here is a related article I wrote on how to keep your ducks safe from predators

3. It is a rich source of vitamins and minerals

Peanuts contain several minerals and vitamins.

Some of them include; Magnesium, Biotin, Niacin, Vitamin E, Phosphorus, Copper, Thiamine, etc.

What are mineral deficiencies? 

Mineral deficiency causes the duck to lay softshell or no shell eggs at all.

This can cause them to eat their eggs which is a big problem.

What is a vitamin deficiency in ducks?

Vitamin deficiencies cause the duck to becomes weak and stop growing well.

Their movement is misbalanced and their feathers are disarranged.

The duck develops chest and eye discharges and can have chest problems.

You can prevent these problems by adding including a nutritious meal to the duck’s food. And peanut is one of the nutritious foods.

If the duck has retarded growth, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and general weakness, it’s suffering from Niacin deficiency.

The shortage of Niacin also causes blowing of legs and tibiotarsi joint.

Thiamine is also known as Vitamin B1.

If it is less in the duck body, it causes Polyneuritis in the later development phases. A decrease in appetite is also imminent.

Giving ducks small quantities of peanuts in their diet is the best way of preventing these deficiencies.

Here is a comprehensive list I wrote of what can ducks eat

Can ducks eat peanut shells?

Yes, ducks can eat peanut shells as well as peanut.

However, note that peanut shells have no nutritional value to the duck.

As such, feeding peanuts shells to ducks is useless.

Peanut shells only offer fiber which is the same the duck get when it consumes peanut and other food items.

Peanut shells can also mess with the digestive process of the duck.

The best thing to do is to avoid feeding these shells to the birds.

If you have been feeding them, stop because you are hampering their digestive process.  

Feed them the required feeds with nutritional benefits.

How many peanuts can I feed my duck?

The maximum number of peanuts you can give the duck is two peanuts a day.

You should not give them as a full-meal but as treats.

The digestive system of a duck is well structured yet, very simple.

They have no teeth to crush the food into finer pieces.

It is the reason they swallow food as a whole.

The duck digestive system work in a unique way different from that of human beings.

Duck’s swallow the food, store it, chew it, and then expel the unwanted from their body.

Remove the shell from the peanut first because they can get stuck in the duck’s crop.

Can ducks eat peanut butter?

Ducks can eat peanut butter.

But it should be given in very small quantities.

Peanut butter with fewer additives is fine to the ducks.

Do not feed rancid, moldy, or spoiled peanut butter to ducks.

It is dangerous to the health of ducks as it could be toxic. 

But peanut butter with a past best date is fine.

Blended peanut butter with cookie pieces or marshmallow are not good to birds.

Those with low-fat or sugar-free are not good for birds either.

They lack the nutritional value that the birds need.

Those with sugar substitutes can be dangerous to birds.

Are peanuts poisonous to ducks?

Yes, peanuts are poisonous to ducks if great caution is not taken.

Ducks swallow their food as a whole and nuts like peanuts can get stuck in their crop.

When peanuts get stuck in the crop, the digestive process of the duck is affected.

The crop becomes backed up.

The rate of movement of the food through the digestive system is affected.

It is why it is recommended that peanuts be grounded to fine pieces or paste.

Ducks find it difficult to swallow large nuts and seeds. They don’t have teeth to crush them into small pieces. Peanuts should be fed as treats.


Peanuts are a good nutritional source if included in the duck feed.

Peanuts help to increase the size and mass of the duck egg.

This is helpful as it increases the quality of eggs. As a result, production of healthier ducklings.

Just like human beings, ducks have their food preferences.

They might approach the food but ignore it if they dislike it.

Some ducks might not bother to look at their feed bowl when you toss peanuts onto them.

Others are likely to fight because they might like peanuts more than you think.

Above all, ducks chomp their beaks onto anything that attracts their attention.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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