KMurphyVT

In the Brooder
Aug 9, 2020
16
32
33
Hello,
How often do chickens need to take a dust bath and do they still do/need this in winter?Also, I keep reading different recommendations on whether to use Diatomaceous earth for chickens. My local vet said he rarely sees small backyard flicks with lice or mites and didn’t recommend using de. Just wondering what other people thought.
Kelly
 

BuckeyeAmy69

Songster
Mar 9, 2020
1,062
2,660
246
NW, OH
Mine will dust bathe at least once a day, sometimes twice. I do not recommend DE either, it's not good for a bird's respiratory system and will harm yours too. Let them dig in loose soil, sand. They are great at making their own holes. Mine love to dust bathe underneath a pine tree that has a mixture of soil and light limestone gravel that is easy for them to dig in. They love it!
 

DobieLover

Easily distracted by chickens
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
23,565
178,263
1,592
NY Southern Tier
My Coop
Hello,
How often do chickens need to take a dust bath and do they still do/need this in winter?Also, I keep reading different recommendations on whether to use Diatomaceous earth for chickens. My local vet said he rarely sees small backyard flicks with lice or mites and didn’t recommend using de. Just wondering what other people thought.
Kelly
Hi Kelly,
Yes, chickens dust bathe daily year round. I don't use DE around the flock at all.
 

Mya05

Chirping
May 10, 2020
50
99
83
Edmond, Oklahoma
Hello,
How often do chickens need to take a dust bath and do they still do/need this in winter?Also, I keep reading different recommendations on whether to use Diatomaceous earth for chickens. My local vet said he rarely sees small backyard flicks with lice or mites and didn’t recommend using de. Just wondering what other people thought.
Kelly
My girls LOVE their dust baths! If your ground gets too hard in winter, you could till the soil for them the bathe in, or purchase some dirt or sand for them I wouldn't use Diatomaceous earth, because it can be bad for their respiratory health.
 

thepick4uchicks

Songster
May 23, 2020
982
1,623
143
Mississippi
I have a different opinion of food grade DE. I blend a small amount with some wood ash and some potting soil and some barn lime in an old bird bath to make a generous dust bath. You see I am loaded with the most tremendous insect of all time the lovely fire ant. So I use the DE inside the run for these and it helps and eases the burden I would have to put on the use of permethrin in the run. So if I weigh this against the “possible” negative risks of DE use it plays out in my book to be about the same.
 

One Lucky Momma

Chicken Kisser
Premium Feather Member
Apr 25, 2020
441
1,326
196
Madison Co, NC
After extensive research on BYC, I created for my little flock the perfect dust bath - carefully combining a balanced formula including all the recommended components, and situated it in a covered but sunny spot in the run.

In no time at all, they discovered it and use it daily - as a roost, while they wait in line for the hole they’ve dug in the ground :gig .
 

thepick4uchicks

Songster
May 23, 2020
982
1,623
143
Mississippi
After extensive research on BYC, I created for my little flock the perfect dust bath - carefully combining a balanced formula including all the recommended components, and situated it in a covered but sunny spot in the run.

In no time at all, they discovered it and use it daily - as a roost, while they wait in line for the hole they’ve dug in the ground :gig .
Good for you!
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
Nov 27, 2012
86,036
101,880
1,727
SW Michigan
My Coop
Thank You! Do I need to provide one in the winter when the ground is frozen?
If you have a place in the run that stays dry, thus will not freeze, that will work.
That what happens here.
I used to gather dirt from where they bathed each fall and put it in a tub in the coop,
they did not use it. Now I don't bother.
I don't use DE either.
 

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