Anyone have experience using corn cob beddings?

Eel Noob

In the Brooder
11 Years
Jul 28, 2008
I have been using wood pellets for only half a week now but some of the pieces are already starting to break into fine pieces. So I'am thinking about giving corn cob bedding a try. Only thing is I have a feeling the chickens will eat them as well since they're very similar in shape and colors to grains. Anyone with experience using corn cob beddings?
I tried the cob bedding with my parrot way back when and only used the one bag I bought to try. The poop just sat on top and wet droppings went right through to the tray. It might work better for birds that scratch but it's expensive compared to other litter options and it does look an awful lot like crumble.
Back in the 1950's ad early 60's, when I was growing up with chickens on my parents and also on my grandparents farms, this was the bedding we, and everyone else we knew, used. Ground corn cob. It was cheap, widely available and excellent. I never saw wood shavings sold in bundles back then. Some folks, who may have lived near a sawmill, used sawdust. Ground corn cob was absorbent and organic and rotted down very well in the gardens, in the berry patches and wherever else my mother had me dump them every Saturday morning. We used it in the brooder and right on through with no issues.

We had a large flock of well over 200 birds, so the bedding had to be changed weekly. The price of corn cob now is prohibitively high. I use yellow straw. So, give it a try. If you like it? Fine. If you don't? You can try something else.

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Thanks for the responses.

I did tried straws before the wood pellets but seem to get too dusty after a few days of the chickens scratching and playing in them. I"m currently trying to find a less dustier option.
I use chopped wheat straw currently (we run it through a chipper/shredder) and haven't found it dusty at all. The chopping process itself is messy (dust masks required) but it's such nice litter and relatively cheap where I live. The chickens appreciate the stray wheat kernels -- it's a big party when I change the litter. I wonder if you got a bad bail?

I'm also wondering why cob bedding got so expensive? It would seem that with all of the corn being grown, what is essentially a waste product ought to be abundant. And, FWIW, I bet pelleted and crumble feed didn't exist in the 50s and 60s. Chickens were probably smarter, too.
Fallen Autumn leaves are what I use, and pine needles / pine straw.
I had experience with corn cob bedding years ago - it was very quick to mold when wet.
I would never use it again.

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