Dust Bath vs Dirt Bath

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Linda in San Diego, May 19, 2008.

  1. Linda in San Diego

    Linda in San Diego Songster

    May 11, 2008
    San Diego
    We have never had a formal lawn, much to my neighbor's dismay. Lots of fruit trees and bushes. We took out a large pepper tree under which no plants would grow and are still working on the whole yard layout thing. The pullets, 4 weeks and counting, were put in the coop/run this weekend. The white one insits on taking dust baths, but it is not "dust" it is older than you can know black, loose, topsoil stuff. Ages and ages of decomposing leaves have laid there and it is not really "dirt". Anyway, she managed to coat herself so well that you can see the dirt making her light skin dark under the white feathers.
    My question, is this a problem? Should I provide something like sand or is all good? LOL that was 2 questions!
  2. Dawn419

    Dawn419 Lost in the Woods

    Apr 16, 2007
    Evening Shade, AR
    Dirt bath = Dust bath.

    Our flock would love your dirt, they are "blessed" with the confounded red clay and really have to work on getting it loose enough to dust themselves with.

    Hope this helps!

  3. tvtaber

    tvtaber Songster

    Aug 2, 2007
    Central CA
    We have pretty fine loose soil and it is perfect for dust baths, but it does make for some dirty chickens! "Bath" is a good word for the pumping/rolling/wiggling dance they love to do in the dirt, but it really does not get them "clean". If they seem to be enjoying it and are healthy, then it is perfect!
  4. I envy you your loose soil for your chickens bath, Mine have to scratch up enough dry clay,throw the rocks aside and hope there is enought for them to dust bath, As long asthey are healthy, let them enjoy it. marrie
  5. Chickaroo!

    Chickaroo! Songster

    Dec 27, 2007
    I just bought my chickens one of those sand boxes that look like a turtle. I put some miracle grow potting soil in it for them to bath in. They love it!
  6. chickenbike

    chickenbike Songster

    Does anyone have any other options (like miracle gro) to fill a dust bath with? Do the chickens prefer true dirt, sand, or a potting soil? Which potting soils are safest? Thanks!
  7. HobbyChickener

    HobbyChickener Songster

    Jun 29, 2007
    central KY
    Mine is a mix of pelletized lime (for the calcium) and Play sand from lowes.
  8. gdaryl333

    gdaryl333 In the Brooder

    May 15, 2008
    I took my also 4 weeks old babies out in the chicken run today. They started to scracth, flop, row over, dance and all kind of stuff. I did not if something was wrong since these are our first baby chicks. Thanks Linda for asking your question. Thanks everyone else for the answers. Makes me feel good that they are having fun. Best wishes with your chicks Linda....
  9. estpr13

    estpr13 Songster

    May 18, 2008
    Lexington, Ky
    I put a little bit of diatomatious earth and Boric Acid in with some oyster shell powder and wood ash. Along with lowes play sand, and lots of dirt filtered through a one quarter inch hardware cloth (wire screen). The diatomatious earth is to keep down bacteria I think and the boric acid and wood ash keep out other pests (bugs) Don't put too much boric acid or wood ash in as they can burn the chicken's skin. This is in the coop. Outside they go to my garden where the dirt is loose and filled with about a hundred years of coal dust. I don't really know what I'm doing but they seem to enjoy it.
  10. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    I have wallows all over the yard...but they enjoy it...if you have a bunch all in the same spot it's hysterical because it looks like a dirt war.

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