dust bath

jake99

Hatching
9 Years
Feb 17, 2010
8
0
7
hi.does my chickens taking dust baths mean they have mites etc. or do they just like it.
while i'am here when it gets cold .new england. could i give them suet cakes store bought once in a while .
sorry if i should have started new topic thank you
jq
 

canada-goose

Is Mostly Harmless
11 Years
Jul 16, 2009
14,366
56
366
Welcome!

Chickens take dust baths for fun, and to prevent mites. It doesn't necessarily mean they have a mite problem.

You did start a new topic, so there's no need to apologize.
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BitsyB

Chirping
9 Years
Aug 30, 2010
133
1
88
Northern Delaware
I love watching the chickens taking their baths. The first time I saw it I thought something was wrong, like they were stuck in the dirt or something.

And they love sunbaths, too, they lie on their sides, sometimes it scares me cause they look dead!

Makes me sad to think of all the chickens in tiny cages or in the factory chicken houses that never get to act out this very natural behavior...
 

BitsyB

Chirping
9 Years
Aug 30, 2010
133
1
88
Northern Delaware
Oops, sorry I didn't answer your suet question- not sure if it's good for chickens or not. A little probably wouldn't hurt, but I always think that if we're eating their eggs (or their flesh) we should feed them the healthiest foods we can reasonably provide for them. In winter to make up for less bugs and grass they can find on their own, I supplement them with some cooked oatmeal w/ yogurt. I grow trays of wheat grass for them and my husband raises worms so I sneak some of them to the girls, too.
But I suppose a bit of suet would be a welcome treat, and help them keep warm too
 

Boo-Boo's Mama

Songster
9 Years
Mar 21, 2010
1,189
8
149
Western Edge of Central Texas
The dirt bath helps to cool them in the heat but it is also just something they
love.gif
. Mine are out there right now flopping in the sand I just screened...they come and get under my strainer and let the sand flow all over them. Of course, I get a shoe full (and face full) when they start kicking the sand up over them. Baby chicks are a hoot when they take a dust bath in the pine shavings. I gave mine a shoe box with sand in it so they could scratch and learn to take dust bathes.
 

GwenDellAnno

Chirping
10 Years
Jul 18, 2009
231
5
99
Water Valley, AB
I put one of those kiddie pools (8"deep x 4'diameter) in and put a good layer of dirt in the bottom of it in the middle of the coop. My chickens loved it. They were in it every day through the winter. Once spring came and they were out again, I cleaned it up and dumped it all out. Guess it's time to get it ready again.
 

kano

Songster
11 Years
Aug 24, 2008
313
4
123
Santiago de Chile
They do that to prevent mites, and also because they LOVE it. It's also a way to socialize. (I imagine them like people packed in a beach)

Isabel, enjoying.....
 

dogdollar

Songster
11 Years
May 19, 2010
131
6
164
Mine all take dust baths together in an unoccupied, sandy soil flower bed. They like to to gossip and do each others toenails....leaving me and Dominick the Rooster to find our own entertainment......guess it's a girl thing.

DD
 

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