Eating Bedding - OK?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Catalina, Aug 9, 2007.

  1. Catalina

    Catalina Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 19, 2007
    Minnesota
    My chicks are a week old and I've been using a mix of pine and hemp bedding in their brooder. It's working really well. I change it every day and zero smell....BUT they keep eating little pieces of it! Is this OK?
     
  2. forevercheepers

    forevercheepers New Egg

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    Jul 26, 2007
    Mine are doing this too! I keep the shavings nice and clean, but they go around and peck at them, especially the darker colored pieces. This won't hurt them, I hope? :eek:
     
  3. Southern28Chick

    Southern28Chick Flew The Coop

    Apr 16, 2007
    For the first week you should have covered the bedding with paper towels until they figured out that the feed is food and not the bedding.
     
  4. forevercheepers

    forevercheepers New Egg

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    Jul 26, 2007
    Well, mine know that their feed is food...they're pretty good eaters! [​IMG] They're not eating shavings constantly, just a dark colored piece here and there.

    That's interesting, I've never heard that you should cover their bedding with paper towels to stop them eating it.
     
  5. Chelly

    Chelly Cooped Up

    May 11, 2007
    Mine have the paper towels - and gosh do they POOP alot!!!
    They've picked around the edges at the pine shavings, they're just testing everythign I think.
     
  6. Southern28Chick

    Southern28Chick Flew The Coop

    Apr 16, 2007
    Quote:That is very interesting. EVERYBODY on this site says thats what to do. Do a search and you'll see.

    Edited to add: I just noticed you're new, that's why you didn't know.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2007
  7. Southern28Chick

    Southern28Chick Flew The Coop

    Apr 16, 2007
    Here you go. This is from Ideal Hatchery's website:


    b. Cover the floor with an inch or two of rice hulls, shavings, ground corncobs or other semi-coarse, absorbent products that do not easily mat. DO NOT USE CEDAR SHAVINGS, cedar is toxic to chickens. The litter should be covered with burlap material, cheesecloth, paper towels or other non-slick material for the first three days. This will prevent the babies from eating the litter, reduce the possibility of the babies from becoming sprattle-legged and provide for easy access of feed sprinkled on top of the material.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2007
  8. Catalina

    Catalina Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 19, 2007
    Minnesota
    I just took the paper towels off three days ago. They are 9 days old. I think they know where their food is, but they still like to eat the bedding. Maybe I'll give them a little grit. I was just worried about them getting impacted crops.
     
  9. Southern28Chick

    Southern28Chick Flew The Coop

    Apr 16, 2007
    Quote:As long as they aren't eating a lot of it they should be fine. They don't need grit. There's grit in the chick feed. Mine did eat a little but got bored of it after a bit.
     
  10. forevercheepers

    forevercheepers New Egg

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    Jul 26, 2007
    The chick care from Muller Lane Farm didn't have the paper towel thing, but the McMurray one did. [​IMG] You were right, I wasn't observant enough.

    I put some paper towels on top of the shavings, and now I can see all their poop really clearly, lol. [​IMG] Though it does seem to work. They were a bit confused at first, but they've taken it in stride. [​IMG]
     

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