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Dust Bath Material

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by RedDrgn, Jul 18, 2011.

  1. RedDrgn

    RedDrgn Anachronistic Anomaly

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    May 11, 2011
    West Virginia
    My Coop
    We have five 13 day old chicks that are currently doing wonderful. This is our first time raising chickens, and it's been a complete delight so far (we had no idea they were so much fun). The last few days it has been in the upper 80s/low 90s, so we took the opportunity to take them out and introduce them to their coop and run.

    The run is 100 square feet of sheltered bare soil/grass mix, portions of which never see rain. So it's very dry and has plenty of dust; the chicks LOVE it. They take community dust bathes and just wallow in it for up to 15 straight minutes at a time. They're a riot to watch and raise quite a cloud!

    Of course, dirt ends up all over the place and I'm guessing that as they get bigger and continue to do this, that they may need to have more material added periodically. My question is, is charcoal ash suitable? We do a lot of grilling with charcoal (none of which contains or is otherwise contaminated with lighter fluid or anything else of the sort), and generate quite a bit of ash. We have a spot on the side of the yard where we typically dump it, and the wild birds go gaga dust bathing in it. Just wondering whether it'd be safe for the chickens.
     
  2. KFox

    KFox Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 19, 2011
    I have a burn pit in my yard that we use for making fires and my chickens play in the ashes all the time.
     
  3. bawkbawkbawk

    bawkbawkbawk Chillin' With My Peeps

    Another thing you can do is to get a bag or two of playground sand - they love to bathe in it
     
  4. RedDrgn

    RedDrgn Anachronistic Anomaly

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    May 11, 2011
    West Virginia
    My Coop
    Cool! We're planning to spread some DE around the run and mix a little with sand and add that periodically for their bathing, too. Just saw a wren going crazy in the ash pile the other night and wondered whether that would be a safe supplement as well. Thanks!
     

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