Is it okay that they're pecking????

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by mcjessen, Mar 31, 2011.

  1. mcjessen

    mcjessen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 22, 2011
    Coeur d Alene ID
    Okay, probably because it's late, I need someone to reassure me on something. The chicks just started scratching in the pine shavings in the brooder. They're pecking at the bottom of the brooder too. Now, I know its normal for chickens to scratch and peck but I'm worried they're eating the pine shavings. They know where their food and water is and have been eating and drinking on a regular basis. I just need to know it's okay and they aren't going to hurt themselves IF they do eat the shavings. Guess I'm a first time worried chick mom. LOL!
  2. lemongrass

    lemongrass Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 16, 2011
    Maryland, US
    I don't know much because I don't use shavings, but I have heard that its bad if they eat them... hence why I don't use. My young ones are on paper towels that I keep adding to cover up the poop as I go. I got the idea from someone else's brooder design page, and it works for me. I was afraid of them eating the bedding... and well the only other option I had at the time was straw, which I didn't think would work. In the barn, the chicks get wood chips, which are a bit bigger and so far they don't seem to eat them.[​IMG]

    Unfortunately, other than changing the bedding, I don't know what to suggest to keep them from eating it. Maybe someone else can chime in and say I'm wrong, that its harmless.
  3. CCourson05

    CCourson05 Popping like kettle corn...

    Jan 5, 2011
    Hickory Flat, MS
    It won't hurt them to eat the shavings, so long as the shaving aren't cedar.
  4. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Chicks peck at everything. Scratching and pecking is normal behavior. They don't really eat enough pine shavings to hurt. Of course, now that I've said that, someone will chime in with "My chicks died of impacted crops eating shavings." But I have raised a slew of chicks, incubating and hatching nonstop since July 2010, and not had an adverse pine shavings events.
  5. mcjessen

    mcjessen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 22, 2011
    Coeur d Alene ID
    Okay, thank you. I really can't tell if they are eating them or just pecking around. What's probably happening is they're are settling in and doing their "normal" chicken thing. I feel better now. Honestly, The last time I even witnessed baby chicks and their behavior was in 1984 - aside from the chicks at the farm store and they are in wire bottom cages. Thanks all
  6. petunias212

    petunias212 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 12, 2011
    i use poultry pads and my 5 day old and week old chicks peck at the fibers all day long! i guess it keeps picking on each other at bay.
  7. lady feathers

    lady feathers Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 29, 2010
    Mine are on pine shaving most of the time they play with it running around as if they have found something special causing the others to chase them... or they spit it back out once they realize its not all that tasty, as long as they know where their feeder is and you've seen them use it they are most likely just practicing their "when I'm a rown up chicken" skills. Wait until they start dust bathing in it it's hilarious to watch the rest of the chicks frantically clean them off. If they are less than a week old you can put them back on paper towel if it really worries you, after that they definately know where the food really is!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by