Can (or should) I use sand in my brooder?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Chicks4MyFamily, Aug 8, 2011.

  1. Chicks4MyFamily

    Chicks4MyFamily Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 12, 2011
    Valley City, OH
    I love the sand that we have in the run for my pullets...the ease of cleanup and lack of smell! Can I use sand in the brooder with my new baby chicks?
  2. gamechicken

    gamechicken Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 27, 2011
    no ceader saw dust is best for them
  3. nanawendy

    nanawendy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2009
    Bellingham Wa
    I've always used pine shavings and some times wood pellets. I heard on BYC that cedar could be a problem. The fumes???? do a search
  4. DancingHen

    DancingHen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2011
    Central Oregon Coast
    I have switched to using sand in my brooders. The clean up is easy as long as you scoop the surface clean often, and the chicks love how the sand holds and radiates the heat from their lamp. Also, I no longer have to worry about young chicks eating too many pine shavings, and the sand acts as grit to aid their digestion. I have less pasty butts since I switched to sand. Just be sure to use clean sand free os debris. I like to use bags of play sand for kid's sandboxes.

    I have heard that cedar oils are toxic to chickens, so I would be cautious using cedar shavings or dust. If you want to use wood shavings or pellets I would use pine.
  5. Bantam Username

    Bantam Username Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 3, 2011
    Wiltshire, UK
    I've wondered the same thing as I used to keep my hens on sand and they loved it, they'd scratch, bathe and peck to their hearts content. But everyone here seems to suggest pine shavings with paper towels on top so they don't eat the shavings. Surely since sand is edible for them and will aid digestion, it is a good idea? [​IMG]

    I used to use bird sand for my hens. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2011
  6. turbodog

    turbodog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2010
    Independence, La.
    Don't see why not unless one would worry about them eating too much sand.
  7. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

    Sep 7, 2009
    Florida - Space Coast
    Quote:Cedar fumes are deadly to birds, please do not use it as bedding.

    Yes sand is fine with young chicks and ducks. It actually helps hold heat for them directly under the heat lamp. Easy to clean and with ducklings less smelly! The first 24-36 hours place paper towels or rubber drawer liner over it so they learn what food is.


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