Making them a dusting bath...how?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by kickinchicken, Oct 31, 2010.

  1. kickinchicken

    kickinchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2010
    Rhode Island
    So, I checked on my 3 new family members and they were having a ball "dust bathing" in the shavings. I mean, full-on side roll and feather fluffing going on! It was so precious! So, it got me thinking...I want to make them a dust bath for their brooder. They are in an Akita-sized dog crate right now. Heat lamp on one side, a 2x4 in the shape of a T to let them learn how to perch and they are on pine shavings. So, they have PLENTY of room for some new play equipment in their P-Park...my toddler calls their new brooder the chicken P-Park (playground). Oh, the chicks are 2 lavender bantam Ameraucanas and a partridge Silkie bantam. We have named them: Belle, Cinderella and Jasmine. Yes, the toddler is in her PRINCESS phase.

    So I was thinking playground sand, DE and perhaps of the shavings. I don't have a wood stove so no access to fireplace leftovers.

    They are too little to let outside. Its now in the 50s here and they did go out last week one day when the weather was 75. It was a freak warm day so I totally took advantage of it. They got to meet the bigger pullets while in their play area. So sweet!
     
  2. kitkatnoah

    kitkatnoah Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 26, 2010
    Houston, Texas
    I use top soil mixed with playground sand for my 2 week old chicks to take a dust bath in. The soil & sand is in a plastic mixing bowl, since they are still little. Once in a while I'll bury worms in the soil/sand mixture for them to discover, which gets them all excited.
     
  3. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Peat moss also works well, but beware the extreme fine dust that gets lofted into the air.

    I went to great lengths to build dirt bathing stations for my older flock. They turned up their beaks at every attempt. One was a combo of wood ash, sand and top soil. The other was pure peat moss. They all preferred to dig their own dirt baths in the pine duff. However, their pen is ordinary construction sand and decomposed sandstone I dug from the road side. They really enjoy bathing in it. Sand works well for chicks, too. (And they get necessary grit to digest any treats you give them.)
     
  4. Mak

    Mak Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Londonderry, NH
    I used a shallow dish of playsand when mine were in the brooder. They loved it, and as noted above, it gives them some grit also when they start getting treats.
     
  5. BooBear

    BooBear Chicken Cuddler

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    Conroe, Texas
    I use river sand in a frisbee.

    They love it.
     
  6. TrystInn

    TrystInn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 16, 2009
    Southern Arizona
    Old cat litter boxes work great! I add sand, poultry dust and some DE.
     
  7. True Grit

    True Grit Chillin' With My Peeps

    They used my red plaid pajamas as a dust bath on my lap.[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2010
  8. Resolution

    Resolution Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Creation and maintenance of the sand bath/ dust wallow is the most important preventative health measures we can use to keep our birds healthy over the long term.


    I add cold wood ashes from the fire every few days to dust baths made out of horse troughs- these are surrounded on all sides with straw bales stacked considerably higher than the dust wallow walls. A partial roof over one end is helpful as well.

    Playground sand, crushed cuttle shell, oystershell, and wood ashes all make their way into the dust wallow as does small amounts of crushed lime and DE.

    THe dust wallow needs to be kept as clean as water containers. Use a kitty litter box rake.

    Feathers and feather fragments need to be removed as often as feasible.

    The last most important ingredient(s) to add as often as possible into the dust wallow:

    Head to your closest dollar store. Pick up a shopping basket. Go to the herbs and spices aisle. Buy every single tin and bottle of cinnamon, pepper, cayenne pepper, curry, turmeric, ginger, cumin, -pretty much any and all spices and herbs - pumpkin pie spice- paprika- just shop!

    Mix these together in a jar and regularly sprinkle the spice mix (liberally) over the top of the dust wallow just as we might use talc on a diaper.
     
  9. Resolution

    Resolution Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Creation and maintenance of the sand bath/ dust wallow is the most important preventative health measures we can use to keep our birds healthy over the long term.


    I add cold wood ashes from the fire every few days to dust baths made out of horse troughs- these are surrounded on all sides with straw bales stacked considerably higher than the dust wallow walls. A partial roof over one end is helpful as well.

    Playground sand, crushed cuttle shell, oystershell, and wood ashes all make their way into the dust wallow as does small amounts of crushed lime and DE.

    THe dust wallow needs to be kept as clean as water containers. Use a kitty litter box rake.

    Feathers and feather fragments need to be removed as often as feasible.

    The last most important ingredient(s) to add as often as possible into the dust wallow:

    Head to your closest dollar store. Pick up a shopping basket. Go to the herbs and spices aisle. Buy every single tin and bottle of cinnamon, pepper, cayenne pepper, curry, turmeric, ginger, cumin, -pretty much any and all spices and herbs - pumpkin pie spice- paprika- just shop!

    Mix these together in a jar and regularly sprinkle the spice mix (liberally) over the top of the dust wallow just as we might use talc on a diaper.
    These spices and herbs become part of the environmental dust of the enclosure. Where the exceedingly fine spice powder makes its way into crevices and feathers- tiny hair like micro-plumes on the face- in the ears- these drive mites and lice as far away from the birds as they can get.

    It also discourages rodents and predators- any mammal that uses their noses to find prey- or feed.
    They basically get a brain burn ( like us getting a brain freeze from drinking a milkshake too fast) when they snort up a few nostril loads of spicy powder.
     
  10. lotzahenz

    lotzahenz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 28, 2008
    Lexington, Kentucky
    Great advice above.. I use a 14" fire ring from Tractor supply (metal circle about 6 ft across) and filled it with DE and peat moss, they wallow it all the time. For chicks, I love the sand in a frisbee.
     

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