5 day old chicks eating shavings

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Henrietta23, Feb 28, 2008.

  1. Henrietta23

    Henrietta23 Songster

    Oct 20, 2007
    Eastern CT
    My three little chicks are now 5 and 6 days old. I've had them on layers of paper towel on top of some shelf liner. Tonight I tried putting pine shavings in the brooder for the first time. They went nuts. I watched for about 10 minutes and they were definitely eating the smaller pieces they found, not just pecking at it. I watched carefully to make sure I wasn't panicking but they were definitely swallowing some of it. I took it all back out and put in more paper towel. Should I wait a few days and try again? Thanks!
  2. Pinenot

    Pinenot Songster

    Sep 11, 2007
    I use paper towels too. It seems like all my little buggers eat it.
  3. Henrietta23

    Henrietta23 Songster

    Oct 20, 2007
    Eastern CT
    Quote:For now it just seems safer to me. Sigh. It sounded so easy!
  4. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    In my brooder I put down a layer of shavings. I cover those with paper towels. After 3 days I take out the towels. Instinctively they scratch and peck. I always dump out some starter crumbles so they have something to scratch and peck. I have never had them eat so many shaving peices that it caused problems.
  5. Henrietta23

    Henrietta23 Songster

    Oct 20, 2007
    Eastern CT
    When I have time to sit and watch them this weekend I will try again. They're just so tiny! I'll leave the paper towels on top for a bit so they can get used to the smell of the pine. I know I'm probably just being an over cautious newbie but I couldn't take watching my tiny little silkie baby gleefully gobbling 6 or 7 pieces in a row! I'd never be able to get through the day tomorrow worrying about it!
  6. CoopDelisle

    CoopDelisle Songster

    Feb 26, 2008
    Gulf Coast
    Our chicks are four days old now. We put about an inch of pine shavings down from the start, with paper towels on top. Last night, we decided to take off the towels. The chickies went NUTS! They scratched and nibbled until they wore themselves out. After that, it was like the thrill was over and they stopped nibbling it. Tonight we found a baby cricket in the yard and threw it in the brooder. It was gone in a second![​IMG] Then, we threw in about half a teaspoon of rolled oats. They have been scratching around non-stop for about an hour!! I can already tell that it will be a blessing to have these 15 chicks using our land as an all-you-can-eat buffet![​IMG]
  7. Kristina

    Kristina Songster

    Apr 30, 2007
    South Louisiana
    I have always just used paper towels...they always eat it...the first time I used shavings I waited till they were 5 weeks old since they REALLY knew what their food was. Well I put them in their pen with the pine shavings went inside for about 20 minutes when I went to see them they were all dead except for two...they had eaten pine shavings and poof 12 healthy boisterous babies dead...I was able to save the 2 and that was it [​IMG] (not everyone has that experience but I will never use pine shavings again) (before anyone asks questions I've been raising chickens for a LONG time [​IMG] )
  8. Henrietta23

    Henrietta23 Songster

    Oct 20, 2007
    Eastern CT
    Wow, guess I will stick with paper towels rather than risk that!
  9. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
    I've raised hundreds of chicks on paper towels and then add my wood shavings...never had a problem....
  10. GwenFarms

    GwenFarms Songster

    Feb 26, 2008
    Try corn cob bedding..you can get it at tractor supply...its pelleted. Its a lot cleaner than paper towels. Its safer than shavings.

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