We discovered that our chickens would eat just about anything, from our garden plants, to insects, to table scraps and vegetable peelings. Pretty soon they were being used as garbage disposal units, and they did a very good job.
They were able to change the scraps, etc., into food for the garden in a very short time. The soil where the chicken pen used to be is some of the most fertile in my garden now.
In the hen coop, we used straw as their bedding, as it was useful when finished with. It could be used as mulch, especially around the strawberries, or it could be added to the compost bin, where any manure in it was a great additive to the compost.
Chickens are also great at eating caterpillars, snails and slugs, although they do help themselves to the fresh vegetable leaves as well, unfortunately, They don’t eat a lot though, and you can always fence off the more vulnerable crops.
Chickens are really useful pets to have around, and nothing beats a good fresh free-range egg from your own hens!