Can I Give Chicks Play Sand as Grit?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Sk8inChick(en), Mar 28, 2012.

  1. Sk8inChick(en)

    Sk8inChick(en) Chillin' With My Peeps

    631
    15
    133
    May 12, 2011
    The Show-Me State
    Hi there,

    I have two one week-old chicks, and I'm wanting to start taking them outside and maybe give them a few treats.

    I know they have to have grit, and I have some play sand that I boiled (so it is sterilized) and I just want to know if that is okay to give them. I've also heard of using finch grit from the pet store.

    I'm curious, what is everyone's opinion on this?

    Thank you! :)
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    9,551
    2,488
    411
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Play sand is an excellent grit for chicks. It's what I use. I use sand in my run, and all the flock has plenty of grit.

    I put a small tub of sand in the brooder when the chicks are around a week old. They love jumping in and dirt bathing in it! You've never seen anything so cute as a tiny chick dirt bathing!

    After they have grit, I introduce the babies to earth worms. Good times!

    Make sure any finch grit from the pet store doesn't have calcium added to it, as it's not good for growing chicks.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2012
  3. Sk8inChick(en)

    Sk8inChick(en) Chillin' With My Peeps

    631
    15
    133
    May 12, 2011
    The Show-Me State
    Thank you! :)

    I gave them some grit a few hours ago, and they have been pecking at it. Would it be safe to take them outside now, weather permitting?
     
  4. sunny & the 5 egg layers

    sunny & the 5 egg layers Overrun With Chickens

    4,713
    158
    296
    Mar 29, 2011
    It would be fine for you to take your chicks outside for a little while if the weather is right and if you keep a close eye on them. Play sand is great chick grit, I use it for my chicks too.
     
  5. Sk8inChick(en)

    Sk8inChick(en) Chillin' With My Peeps

    631
    15
    133
    May 12, 2011
    The Show-Me State
    Thanks for the reply!

    I'd like to take them outside, but what is the minimum outdoor temp. for them to be safe?

    Cute dog, by the way!
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2012
  6. LilMissChz

    LilMissChz Chillin' With My Peeps

    399
    9
    108
    Feb 16, 2012
    North East, Maryland
    I take mine outside only if it's 70 and warmer. Then I take them into the sunshine. I keep my field trips short. And I keep them in the sun when I do it. If it gets too cloudy or windy, the field trip is over and back inside they go! Its been rough because it's been cloudy, cool and rainy here and we are expecting more.
     
  7. Albanese07

    Albanese07 Chillin' With My Peeps

    111
    3
    81
    Mar 20, 2012
    Florida
    Oh no! I've been giving my 2 week olds finch grit and it does contain calcium! Why is that bad? Is it too late? I hope I didn't hurt them?! What will the calcium do?
     
  8. Sk8inChick(en)

    Sk8inChick(en) Chillin' With My Peeps

    631
    15
    133
    May 12, 2011
    The Show-Me State

    I believe an excessive amount of calcium in young (not yet laying) chicks can cause a buildup in their systems, because they can't lay eggs to eliminate extra calcium.
    That's what I've read, anyway.
    Hopefully everything will be okay and I wish you luck with your chickens! :) [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2012
  9. suebee

    suebee Speaks Silkie Fluently

    2,087
    106
    251
    Apr 1, 2007
    N. Carolina
    Play sand is fine, and they will get natural grit in the outside dirt. I strongly suggest you don't find them earthworms to eat. The only time my chicks ever suffered with cocci was after eating earthworms. Other bugs are fine though. :)
     
  10. PlanterJeff

    PlanterJeff Out Of The Brooder

    45
    4
    26
    May 6, 2015
    They will find all the natural grit they need if you take them outside.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by