pine shavings

juliefurry03

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 22, 2014
57
5
48
I just got my first batch of baby chicks, they came home a week ago. Last night I switched them over to pine shavings(they had been on paper towels previously), they are very light and small shavings which is all I could find in the 3 stores I went to. Now they are constantly picking, scratching, and digging in them. I do see them occasionally stop at their feeder and pick there too.

My question is is there a way I can tell if they are ingesting too much bedding? And if they are what can I do. This will be the bedding they will be using from now on seeing as it's the only type available in our area so I want to make sure they are safe. We only have 3 options the shavings, pine pellets, and straw.
 

farnorth

Songster
6 Years
Jul 6, 2013
362
37
103
Upper Michigan
by a week old I think they realize what is food and what isn't. They may pick at the shavings and taste them but I don't think they will eat it.


I kept my day olds in a storage tub the first day I had them and I kept them on a towel and introduced them to food. After they knew what food was I moved them to shavings (and to a broody hen) and they did fine. I think once they have a taste and smell of what things are food they know the shavings are not food.

I know some have had issues with chicks eating shavings but I don't think you will with week old chicks.
 
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juliefurry03

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 22, 2014
57
5
48
I haven't seen them eat it (but I also never see them eat food I see them pick at it but never eat it). I feel their crops and they feel full so I just assumed they were eating. I didn't know if there was something I needed to watch for or not.
 

SusanPC

Songster
5 Years
Feb 28, 2014
179
22
111
Southwest Florida
I raised my chicks in their brooder with pine shavings and they did just fine. I actually did observe them sometimes eating small bits of the shavings, but no harm ever came to them. I also tried paper shreds for a few days and at least one of my chicks enjoyed eating those, so I switched back to pine shavings. They are now 8-week old pullets and still seem to eat little bits of everything in their run and out in the yard, including dirt, small bits of shavings and mulch, leaves, bits of stick, rock, etc. They also seem to be pecking/eating off the bark of the natural branch I have in their run. They all seem healthy.
 

juliefurry03

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 22, 2014
57
5
48
well they seem to be picking at their bedding less lately but the crops of the australorps seem empty. They are always active though and I do see them pecking at their food dish so they must be eating something. I'm a little more relaxed, they must have just been excited over the new "toy" I put in their brooder.
 

cafarmgirl

Crowing
10 Years
Mar 24, 2009
5,523
583
327
California, central valley
They were just curious and interested in the new bedding. I've raised chicks for years on pine shavings right from day one, never had one have a problem due to eating the shavings. But yes, they do peck, scratch and dig through them constantly. Chickens at any age are very busy creatures and anything they can scratch and dig in is great fun and will have their attention for a long time!
 

jay7142509

Hatching
5 Years
Mar 31, 2014
1
0
6
Spokane, Washington
I have used pine shavings since I bought my chickens at Big R 2 weeks ago. My chickens pick at the shavings, but they keep growing and seem healthy. The other day one of my red stars was laying on her side "wallowing" in the shavings, just like a pig or a dog! It was funny to watch her.
 

3riverschick

Poultry Lit Chaser
10 Years
May 19, 2009
8,454
3,215
512
I have used pine shavings since I bought my chickens at Big R 2 weeks ago. My chickens pick at the shavings, but they keep growing and seem healthy. The other day one of my red stars was laying on her side "wallowing" in the shavings, just like a pig or a dog! It was funny to watch her.
Hi jay and
!!!
That's so cute!

Hope to read more about your cute chicks!

Best Regards,
Karen and the Light Sussex
in western PA, USA
 
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Jeniep

Chirping
6 Years
Jan 2, 2014
62
8
86
I hope it is ok to use pine shavings, I just picked mine up and that is what they are on I am wondering if I should switch to paper? Do u use shredded paper or lay it flat?
 

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