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Is it ok to use cedar chips for coop litter?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by banniste, Jan 26, 2009.

  1. banniste

    banniste In the Brooder

    I have been using cedar chips (small animal litter) for our coop since the girls arrived, but I randomly see postings on other sites that it can be toxic for the chickens. I haven't noticed any problems with the girls, they have done well with their laying.

    Are there issues I should be aware of? It sure smells nice when I open up the hen house. [​IMG]

    Thanks, Nancy
  2. Chicken Woman

    Chicken Woman Incredible Egg

    Oct 16, 2008
    The oils in cedar are very aromatic and I have been told they are toxic to chickens. Most people use pine shavings.
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    There are some good reasons to believe it can sometimes be a problem. Indeed some people have had apparent problems with it. Others have not. Probably depends partly on your ventilation. What to do depends on your personal attitude towards risk-tolerance.

    Good luck, have fun,

  4. moduckman

    moduckman Songster

    Jan 2, 2009
    Cairo, Missouri
    I'm not a scientist or whatever. What I've heard is that thje cedar is rough on chicks. You'll hear all kinds of things, but I will use cedar in the barn because the bugs do not like cedar.
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2009
    1 person likes this.
  5. namreknat

    namreknat In the Brooder

    Sep 21, 2008
    N.W. Oklahoma
    On Ideal Poultries website,under care tips,they say; "Do not use cedar shavings,cedar is toxic to chickens." I have never used any for that reason.[​IMG]
  6. ScrambledAcresFarm

    ScrambledAcresFarm Songster

    Aug 23, 2008
    Caulfield, Missouri
    Cedar shouldn't be used for a number of animals! Yes it smells great. But that strong smell is what gives animals sinus problems and upper respiratory infections!
  7. chicken_angler

    chicken_angler Coop Constructist

    Jun 23, 2008
    a house
    NOOOOO! Dont use cedar chips. They have toxic levels of acids and it will kill a lot of animals or hurt their repiratory system.

    Good Luck!

  8. citalk2much

    citalk2much Twilight Blessings Farm

    Dec 22, 2008
    GR MI: TN bound!
    I would be safe and not use ceder for any animals. Vet has nothing nice to say about it
  9. wilds of pa

    wilds of pa Songster

    No wonder when i was a kid my hamsters and gerbils and mice never seemed to live to long..After about two years they always seemed to passed on..

    Pine shavings [​IMG]

    Last edited: Jan 26, 2009
  10. Barry

    Barry Songster

    Deer eat cedars in the winter and seem to thrive on it, cedar keeps moths away but what are the effects on chickens? I don't know.
    I have used some cedar shavings and have not seen any harm done. That was before i read that some say it can be harmful. I did notice that they kept pecking at it so it seems they can eat it but the smell can cause problems. I have noticed that the old cedar I used had very little smell compared to freshly cut wood, so that may be another consideration.
    We really need more info about the possibility of respiratory problems, like we all know that ammonia causes problems when the concentration rises to a high level but there is always ammonia being generated in a coop so it must be kept to a safe level.
    I wonder it there is a safe level for cedar aromas and what it is.

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