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How to get 6 day old chicks from eating the pine shavings?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by chris10sen, Jun 25, 2010.

  1. chris10sen

    chris10sen In the Brooder

    May 30, 2010
    I got my cuties on Wednesday morning. I have pine shavings in the bottom of the brooder with paper towel on top. Every time I go to change the paper towel there is a crazy stampede over to the shavings and they try to eat it. What do I do? Just let them figure it out?
  2. fluffystuffs808

    fluffystuffs808 Chirping

    Sep 22, 2009
    Hi there,

    When I raise my chicks in the brooder, I just use paper towels and I don't use any pine shavings but that is how I do it. I use pine shaving later in their coop when they are ready to go outside. I do see others using pine shavings in their brooder and its not a problem if the chicks pick at it.
  3. Turkeyrangler

    Turkeyrangler Songster

    May 9, 2010
    By Lake Superior
    I have one month old turkey poults. I had them on paper towels for one week then changed them over to pine shavings. They have eaten dried pine shavings every few minutes of their lives with no ill effects. Freaked me out at first, but the are just fine. Add some fine grit to their food if it worries you. It may help the break down the cellulose, but I don't have a problem here with it. I'm new and others may have better ideas.
  4. casumm

    casumm In the Brooder

    May 27, 2010
    Indianapolis, IN
    Don't sweat it. Mine did that too. It lasted for like a day. In hindsight, I'm not even sure they were eating it but rather just checking it out and playing with it. As long as they are eating their chick starter and drinking water, they'll be fine. Once you pull the paper towels (which I was so ready to do by day 6! I'm impressed you've lasted this long) they are over the bedding and on to the next thing... mercilessly pecking at the freckles on your legs being one possibility. :)

  5. serena763

    serena763 In the Brooder

    Jun 11, 2010
    I put paper towels down the first couple of days. Today they are having a blast in the pine shavings...scratching and playing..didn't have the heart to put the paper towels back down!! [​IMG]
  6. Sportsterjeep

    Sportsterjeep Creekside Acres Farm

    Jun 1, 2010
    Mill Hall PA
    As long as you are using bought shavings and not sawdust, they will be fine. All we use is shavings, from day olds up on chickens and ducks.
  7. MMPoultryFarms

    MMPoultryFarms Songster

    Jun 21, 2010
    Okarche Oklahoma
    I use straw hay Its big enough they cant really throw it around it and it absorbs well. First 2-3 days I would Put a burlap sack down and feed on that over shavings then remove the sack and they should not eat chips after that. Consistancy is a chicks best friend to there learning processes. Papertowels are fine just remember some chicks require more grip then others to avoid leg problem later in life thats why i suggest straw hay it acts like 1 million little perches under there tiny little feet each step giving something to clench there little claws to [​IMG] hope this helps Good luck..
  8. Ali707

    Ali707 Songster

    Aug 30, 2010
    Magnolia, TX
    Hi: Okay so my 7 day old chicks have been eating pine shavings for about 2 days now. At first I just thought they were playing with them and scratching at them then I actually saw them eat them. My concern is because the smallest one seems to now be having very firm poop and had some stuck to their butt which I cleaned off. Can the pine shavings actually bind them up and kill them? I see others haven't had any issue with it, but I am of course concerned because I am not sure what else would cause the firm poop.

    Any input or advise would be appreciated.
  9. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging 8 Years

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    I've just about finished raising my fourth batch of chicks. They ALL ate the pine shavings! But they sampled everything else that crossed their paths, too. My latest batch had a real thing for paper - toilet paper, kleenex, and paper towels. They were hilarious! They attacked any paper as if it were a fierce challenger, shredding it and eating it!

    Yes, it worried me a lot at first. When they all seemed to suffer no ill effects from it, I relaxed.

    That said, I have heard that once in a great while, a chick can get impacted crop from eating too many pine shavings. Treating impacted crop is something I've never done, and hope I never need to face. But it's a remote risk.

    I've also heard of some people using sand as bedding in the brooder. It's an option if your chicks' hankering for wood shavings is something that you can't live with. But they'll eat the sand, too!

    With one batch, I used peat moss. It was superior bedding in every way, except it was unacceptably dusty! As bedding goes, the chicks ate the least of it of any bedding I've used.

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