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Do chickens hate pine shaving?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Quyen Le, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. Quyen Le

    Quyen Le Songster

    Jul 9, 2012
    I found 3 first eggs from my almost 6 month old chickens that I raise from eggs last Saturday. I decided to clean the coop and put new shaving on the floor. The next day, I found 2 eggs, 1 of them cracked. None Monday, then today, I found 1 egg in the run area. The second egg was found in the coop where there's no shaving. I also notice many chickens sleep outside of the coop. I wonder if pine shaving is the cause?

  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    As far as I know chickens don't have a problem with wood shavings. I use some in my coop too. The only annoying thing is that they love scratching in it. Is it clean, untreated wood? Does it smell funny?
  3. Quyen Le

    Quyen Le Songster

    Jul 9, 2012
    This is store bought shaving and I have been using this for a while. Usually, chicks try to avoid stepping on shaving (light color) and get use to it in a while. This morning, I found 1 egg on this shaving so I think they kinda get use to it now.
  4. bowen012

    bowen012 Chirping

    Jan 13, 2013
    North Carolina
    No idea if it translates fully to chickens, but pine shavings are horrible for small animals. Cedar too. Natural oils and such play havoc on respiratory systems. Aspen is a better choice. Also, most packaged wood shavings usually come with a healthy dose of pests and parasites with them - mites, lice, etc. I use paper shavings or alfalfa pellets for bedding for my rats because of this.
  5. Judy

    Judy Crowing Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Many people on this forum, like me, use pine shavings from places like Tractor Supply. The ones I buy are kiln dried. They have no bugs and little odor. Mine have lived primarily on top of this for several years. It's true that the odor or fumes from things like pine and especially cedar can be a problem for them, and aspen is indeed a good choice -- but I suspect most people like me don't have access to aspen shavings. If your coop is properly ventilated, and the chickens have plenty of outdoor access, kiln dried pine shavings should cause no problem.

    I suspect what is happening is, your chickens are simply getting used to laying eggs. It's not unusual for odd things to happen for the first month or so. It's as if they need to get used to the idea. You could change the litter to something like dried leaves, shredded paper, hay or straw, which would have no odor -- but anything new at this point could upset the chickens and make their getting used to being egg layers take even longer.
  6. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer Premium Member

    May 11, 2010
    I did an informal sort of experiment with my chickens. I put hay in one nest box and pine shavings in another. They avoided the box with the shavings for months. Never touched it. Then I had to leave them for two days in the care of a petsitter. After I returned, the next day I had two eggs in the box with the shavings. However, they never laid in that box again. I still have shavings in it and they still avoid it.

  7. JackE

    JackE Crowing

    Apr 26, 2010
    North Eastern Md.
    I've used pine shavings for years. From when the birds were just days old in the brooder, on up to when they are full grown. I use the shavings for the floor and the nest boxes, with no problems at all. And I never had any problems with mites, or any other kind of parasite in new shavings.

  8. mdbtalon

    mdbtalon In the Brooder

    Jan 14, 2013
    To make it an valid experiment.... at some point you need to switch which box has shavings/straw and see if they switch which nest they lay in.. I have 12 nesting boxes all with straw. 8 of the boxes have not once been laid in, but have found up to 9 eggs each in the other boxes. The boxes are all right next to eachother and easily accessible. For whatever reason the chickens prefer specific nesting boxes and has nothing to do with bedding in my case (since they all have the same bedding and it has been replaced many many times).

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