Deep litter Method - Is sawdust OK?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Mikey D, Aug 21, 2011.

  1. Mikey D

    Mikey D Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 12, 2011
    Apache Junction AZ
    The title says it all. I live in beautiful sunny Arizona and am ordering my first peepers tomorrow.

    I plan on using the DLM and am curious if I can use sawdust. I teach High School shop (welding and Video Game Development) and have access to a seemingly unlimited supply.

    My concern is, it is not all planner shavings - there will be sanding sawdust in there as well. Will this pose any problems (I'm thinking respiratory) for the chickens?

    Thanks in advance Folks!

    Mikey
     
  2. cjbollinger

    cjbollinger New Egg

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    I'm a newbie, but from what I've read some chickens are allergic to certain wood types¬Ö.I believe cedar is an issue but don't quote me on that. Worth looking into!
     
  3. F106A

    F106A Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Texas Big Country
    Dust would be my concern. (The do call it "sawdust" after all!) Not only for the chickens, but for you. They may want to "bathe" in it, and it seems to me that wouldn't be fun at all.

    Just my two cents...

    P.S. "(welding and Video Game Development)"?? Wow! Shop sure has changed since I went to high school! Interesting combo!
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2011
  4. Mikey D

    Mikey D Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 12, 2011
    Apache Junction AZ
    Quote:The fines were my concern as well. And the ceder that CJ brought up is a concern. I guess I'll just buy the bale of wood chips at Superstition.

    BTW - I totally psyched about the classes I teach!
     
  5. F106A

    F106A Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Funny!

    Yea, cedar is definitely a no-go. Go with pine flakes for the brooder since you are getting chicks. That's what I used, and until they got past the ugly stage, the deep litter method worked fine. Mine got stuck in the brooder longer than I planned for (long story), and I ended up having to change it out about once a week. Of course that was mostly due to them spilling their hanging waterer which took me about a month to figure out! (DOH!!)

    What kind of brooder do you have, and how many chicks are you getting?

    Oh, this is the brooder I made. The base is 5' x 3', the sides are 2', and the 2x2 frame goes up another 2'. I used 3/4" dowels on each side of the frame 18" up, and made some 12" high portable roosts with scrap 1x4s, 2x2s,, and 3/4" dowels. The "shelf roost" is 12" wide. I had the kids run out to the woods behind the neighborhood to find some mesquite branches that the chicks loved to roost on before they could make it up to the shelf.

    [​IMG]

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    Last edited: Aug 21, 2011
  6. MassivelyScrambled

    MassivelyScrambled Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 28, 2011
    Northern California
    very, very cool![​IMG]
     
  7. Mikey D

    Mikey D Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 12, 2011
    Apache Junction AZ
    Quote:Your brooder looks great! I'm going low teck w/ cardboard box & suspended light. I'd like to get them nipple trained asap.
    Any problems with sand in the bottom of the brooder?
     
  8. F106A

    F106A Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't know about the sand to be honest, but think it might help absorb moisture. Might be tough to clean out, but that's why the frame just pulls right out of the box. It made clean-up easy. I just used pine flakes.
     
  9. notducky

    notducky Out Of The Brooder

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    I lost a chick to over eating the sand. I wouldn't use sand in my Brooder again.
     
  10. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    Use the bags of shavings sold as horse bedding. Works great and not expensive (shop around). Paper toweling or hospital pads on top for a few days, then shavings. Make certain that the heat lamp is very well secured; I double or triple attach and tie it up. Fires are not a good thing. Mary
     

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