Chickens eating dirt and pooping mud

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Desert Rooster, Jan 14, 2011.

  1. Desert Rooster

    Desert Rooster El Gallo Del Desierto

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    Sep 4, 2010
    Hesperia, Ca
    I have 3 hens that like to knock over their waterer and like to drink from the mud the water makes. i bought them a wider waterer so they would stop doing this, but now they drink ALOT of water, and throw it up on the dirt and drink the mud the water makes.

    these hens are about 9 months old, and are the only ones doing this.
    i also noticed that these 3 poop a mixture of poop and mud, i dont want them to get sick or even block their crop with dirt, what can i do to prevent this????

    i feed them good, give them treats. i keep their waterer in their run, but i have a large pan under it so it wont make mud.

    when they had the smaller waterer, they sometimes had the rooster knock it down for them. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2011
  2. mylittlechickpea

    mylittlechickpea Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Honolulu, Hawaii
    Quote:[​IMG] I would like to see that. My chickie does this too. She's about 9 months, I have a waterer outside for her, I fill up the small terra cotta plant things that you put the big pot on top of, hubs left a bowl outside two weeks ago that filled with rain water, she drinks out of all of these, and then will still also drink the mud water when it rains. If it's not muddy enough, or looks like her puddle water is starting to settle I've watched her scratch at it to bring the mud back up and drink it... [​IMG] Silly girls.
     
  3. Desert Rooster

    Desert Rooster El Gallo Del Desierto

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    Quote:[​IMG] I would like to see that. My chickie does this too. She's about 9 months, I have a waterer outside for her, I fill up the small terra cotta plant things that you put the big pot on top of, hubs left a bowl outside two weeks ago that filled with rain water, she drinks out of all of these, and then will still also drink the mud water when it rains. If it's not muddy enough, or looks like her puddle water is starting to settle I've watched her scratch at it to bring the mud back up and drink it... [​IMG] Silly girls.

    i've caught him knocking down the small waterer, and then he does his " i found some food " call and those 3 hens come running at mach 3, wings flapping and all to drink from the floor.
     
  4. Denninmi

    Denninmi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It might be a sign that they're deficient in some kind of mineral, particularly calcium, and they are trying to get it from the soil. Or, it might just be because they're chickens and enjoy eating pretty much anything that doesn't eat them first.
     
  5. mylittlechickpea

    mylittlechickpea Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I didn't even think of a deficiency. Thanks. I have a big bag of oyster shell in the pantry. I'll set some out in the morning. I did see her eat a worm earlier, so it could also just be her chicken thing, but I'll put some oyster shell out just in case [​IMG]
     
  6. Pet Duck Boy

    Pet Duck Boy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 12, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    Mine do it too, lol. But it's only when dry dirt and water mixes, they don't knock over their water intentionally either. I give mine Oyster shell every day, so I think it's just a little chicken quirk.
     
  7. bjash

    bjash Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Moline, MI
    It might also not hurt to put out some grit too (in case they're using the mud as they're current grit).
     
  8. Talihofarms

    Talihofarms Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You can use a hanging poultry waterer.

    Also try throwing in a poultry block with minerals.







    just my.02
     
  9. skunknchatter

    skunknchatter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG][​IMG] I have cickens that do that too. Mostly when there is no grit for them. However, my duck does it all the time. I wouldn't worry about the fact that they are pooping mud. Just try to add the oyster shell and grit like some suggested. Sometimes chickens just learn a behavior and keep doing it for "fun".
     

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