Potting Soil for Brooder

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Hecate, Jan 28, 2009.

  1. Hecate

    Hecate Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 27, 2009
    Hi Folks! Just wanted to relate what I finally settled on for litter in my brooder box last August, after experimenting with several options. What worked really well for me was to use potting soil -- the particles were too small to be a danger to the chicks, it stirred up easily and kept the odors at a minimum, and I could toss it all in the compost bin or garden when the chicks were finally in their coop! Anyone else have success with this as litter (or problems)?
  2. ravenfeathers

    ravenfeathers Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2008
    i haven't used potting soil, but i've had tremendous luck with peat moss both in my brooder and in my coop. i highly recommend it to all. it's almost completely odor-free and really appeals to the chicks and the hens for digging and dust bathing. the only drawback is that it makes a fine, settling dust on everything. it doesn't clog up the air in my coop or build up on the hens or their precious beaks, but it does cover everything in the "human area" of the coop with a fine dust like cocoa.

    my worries about potting soil would be the additives, including vermiculite, which i wouldn't think would be good if ingested.
  3. sandspoultry

    sandspoultry Everybody loves a Turkey

    Feb 10, 2008
    Eastern NC
    We use sand. Works great for the brooder boxes and the pens. It helps to that there is a sand pit about 2 miles from our house. [​IMG] We get it by the dump truck load. I just wonder where it all goes? We get about 2 loads a year, 16+ tons a load. You would think the ground level would be 10 feet high by now but it isn't, it's the same level as the rest.

    Steve in NC
  4. willheveland

    willheveland Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 29, 2008
    southern tier,NY
    I have never used potting soil,but can see where it would work good for them.(probably more natural too)Did you avoid the stuff with the little pieces of styrofoam in it for moisture? Will
  5. Hecate

    Hecate Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 27, 2009
    Yes, we used "organic" potting soil that was vermiculite and additive free (although after seeing the amount of styrofoam our chickens consumed on the sly while we were insulating the coop, I think they can eat just about anything!).
    I like the sand idea, and the peat moss. We're going to brood out in the shed this year rather than in our basement, so the dust won't be as much of an issue.
  6. cluckychick

    cluckychick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 29, 2008
    South of KCMO
    Potting soil holds heat really well.
  7. chickens4jojo

    chickens4jojo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 26, 2008
    Upstate South Carolina
    That's a great idea I can use tomorrow. I have run out of pine wood chips & can't wait to try it.

    Thanks for posting it! [​IMG]
  8. Padre

    Padre Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 28, 2008
    Lebanon, TN
    Me thinks I like this idea!!!!!! Maybe even potting soil mixed with peat????? [​IMG]
  9. texaschickmama

    texaschickmama Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 19, 2007
    Poolville, TX
    What a wonderful idea. Cleaning that disgusting newspaper out is not fun and it makes me gag.... [​IMG]

    I will plan on using organic potting soil and peat moss together. My garden is going to do GREAT this year. Thanks guys.
  10. jeanniejayne

    jeanniejayne Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 30, 2008
    What a wonderful idea! Thanks, guys. This place is the BEST!!!!! [​IMG]

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