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chickens ate airsoft pellets!

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

I am not sure how many were consumed.  My chickens free range in our back yard almost every day for some part of the day.  yesterday, neighbor boy had an airsoft gun and was playing in our backyard.  I had no idea what was going on- saw the kids playing, shooting "toy" guns- I didnt know what it was.  I feel very stupid right now.

About 2 hours later my daughter walks into the house with a handful of tiny round yellow balls. that was when I learned  what the kids had been doing IN MY BACKYARD earlier that afternoon.  I was so mad(at myself) the kids didnt mean any harm, of course. the bright yellow balls look like something the chickens would think was delicious.

anyway, we went out and picked up as many as we could see, chickens were confined to their run and are still today.

one "positive" is that this morning I saw some of the balls inside their run- bright yellow things just lying in the grass- could the chickens possibly have already
"learned" that they are like tiny rocks and not good for food?

Ive been googling all morning about this.  Apparently plastic balls are actually used in commercial chicken farming as a roughage- hmm didnt know that before.
here are some interested things I came across:

http://swfsc.noaa.gov/publications/TM/SWFSC/NOAA-TM-NMFS-SWFSC-154_P623.PDF

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/food/food-safety/animal-feed-and-food/animal-feed-and-the-food-supply-105/overview

anyway, I barely slept last night- thinking I might wake up to sick or dead chickens.

chickens appear just fine today- 2 have already layed like normal.  I inspected their poop under their roosts this am and no appearance of any tiny yellow balls.

will they regurgitate them from their crop? will they pass thru them?  there is no way they can digest them- I know.

I am glad that I have no plans for today- I am going to watch them closely.

any advice, thoughts, suggestions, reassurances would be appreciated

thank you!

post #2 of 21

my DSO's son shoots airsoft guns all the time, so the pellets are all over his yard.  his chickens are unfazed.  don't worry.  they'll be fine.

Steffanie
The Ladies of the Manor: 2 BO's & 5 Barnevelders (RIP Violetta & Tatertot ), 1 EE,  & 2 tabby fur children, 3 grown sons, and a needy house.
Another public school teacher who loves her job!

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Steffanie
The Ladies of the Manor: 2 BO's & 5 Barnevelders (RIP Violetta & Tatertot ), 1 EE,  & 2 tabby fur children, 3 grown sons, and a needy house.
Another public school teacher who loves her job!

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post #3 of 21

Like tiny rocks they'll probably just pass.  Chickens eat rocks all the time.  It's what they use to digest many foods and all the greens they pick up with the rocks in the yard.  Airsoft pellets are probably less useful and won't break down as well as rocks grinding against each other but unless they eat too many will probably just go on through their digestive system.  They'll also probably learn to eat fewer if any at all when they find they aren't useful.

post #4 of 21
Thread Starter 

thank you both for your replies!

My chicks seem just fine and with your reassurances I am feeling better too!!

post #5 of 21

I'm so glad to read this thread. We've got airsoft pellets all over the place, too. I was hoping the chickens would just ignore them, but I have seen them peck at them a couple of times.

post #6 of 21

We processed a couple roos last weekend and hubby keeps the liver and gizzards for frying. Look what we found!! All of our BB's we've been shooting... gig



http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/40643_2-22-10_008.jpg

Me & Hubby with our first child, a daughter born on August 27th 2011.  1 dog, 1 cat and SQ silkies in Black, Buff, Splash, White, and Blue. Along with a barnyard mix of large fowl. Oh, and 1 hermit crab..
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Me & Hubby with our first child, a daughter born on August 27th 2011.  1 dog, 1 cat and SQ silkies in Black, Buff, Splash, White, and Blue. Along with a barnyard mix of large fowl. Oh, and 1 hermit crab..
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post #7 of 21

yuckyuckep

post #8 of 21
Thread Starter 

wow- that is so wierd!!! so that rooster was walking around with a gizzard full of bbs?

now I think I have seen it all!

post #9 of 21

Just keep an eye out for florescent POOPS. ep

post #10 of 21

My DH decided to try out his new air soft gun in the yard...grrr. I tried to pick up as many as I could find, but a few days later I watched a chick eat one. Nothing I could do. Distraught I scoured the web without finding much else besides this post. I was elated to see the chick passed the yellow bb on the walk path where I could see it. Whew! What a relief. I was very concerned because the bb's that come with the gun are not biodegradable. DH doesn't do that anymore ;o)

Life is good caring for hubby, kids, pups, hermies, horses, barn cat and 5 chicks! (4 Rose Comb RIR's, 1 Braggs Mountain Buff)
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Life is good caring for hubby, kids, pups, hermies, horses, barn cat and 5 chicks! (4 Rose Comb RIR's, 1 Braggs Mountain Buff)
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