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Question about using Diatomaceous Earth for chickens to dust bathe in.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Kelly G, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. Kelly G

    Kelly G It's like herding cats!

    Has anyone ever used Diatomaceous Earth to allow the chickens to dust bathe in? I understand that you mix it in to the dirt in the area where they normally like to take a dust bath and they will get it worked in on there own.

    I understand it helps keep away mites etc. But I'm always suspicious of holistic stuff and related voodoo type remedies.

    Has anyone usesd this with their chickens? What results have you had?
     
  2. rebecca10782

    rebecca10782 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 24, 2008
    I use it. I put it in their feed and it the nests. I don't mix it in the dirt unless they are dust bathing in front of me, then I sprinkle a little on them [​IMG] Mine have never had mites, I just do it as a precaution.
     
  3. msgenie516

    msgenie516 The Happy Hen

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    May 16, 2008
    Nesconset, LI, NY
    Hi,

    I am not very knowlegeable on this subject but I understand that if you use Diatomaceous Earth, it MUST be labeled "Food Grade" or it could be harmful to the chickens. I would do some research before using it. Good luck! Genie
     
  4. ozark hen

    ozark hen Living My Dream

    6,966
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    Apr 4, 2007
    Mansfield, MO
    But I'm always suspicious of holistic stuff and related voodoo type remedies

    .
    WHAT? [​IMG] I always use FOOD GRADE D.E. to dust everything in the coop when I clean it out. My chickens have favorite spots to dust bathe in and those spots get a good dose also.​
     
  5. Sissy

    Sissy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 18, 2007
    Sevier county, Tn.
    Yes it does keep away the mites etc.
    I have never had a problem and cleaning out the coop twice a year I dust DE all over before I add the fresh wood shavings but do wear a mask.
    cutlers supply has small bags ( on the net)
    if you dont need a 50# bag.( DE longs a long way.)
     
  6. Kelly G

    Kelly G It's like herding cats!

    Yes, what I have is food grade. The lady I bought my Fjord from sent a bucket with me when I picked him up as he has a sensativity to flies (GREAT!). She told me to add it to his feed each day & it would help keep the flies away. Turns out that regular fly spray works much better. Go figure. So that's why I had questions about DE's efficacy altogether.
     
  7. needmorechickens!

    needmorechickens! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 2, 2008
    West TN
    Yep I use it. I sprinkle it anywhere and everywhere...nest boxes, food, roost, dust bath area...I have had my chickens for almost a year now and no mites or anything.

    Don't inhale it, use food grade only!

    ~Rebecca
     
  8. rebecca10782

    rebecca10782 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 24, 2008
    I don't think it would be safe not to use food grade because chickens eat everything including their bedding [​IMG]
     
  9. edselpdx

    edselpdx Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 10, 2008
    Portland, OR
    Quote:This isn't actually "holistic voodoo". DE is a natural substance that is the fossilized remains of diatoms. They nick and absorb the waxy coating on the outside of arthropods like mites and fleas, causing them to dehydrate. It is a mechanical pesticide, rather than chemical. It is used widely in grain storage facilities commercially and is not "voodoo."

    It is important to use FOOD grade DE, because the industrial grade (as found at swimming pool stores, etc) has too much powered silica which can be a health hazard when inhaled by both humans and chickens. It's much cheaper than buying chemical pesticides, which REALLY aren't good for you.
     
  10. CA Bean

    CA Bean Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:This isn't actually "holistic voodoo". DE is a natural substance that is the fossilized remains of diatoms. They nick and absorb the waxy coating on the outside of arthropods like mites and fleas, causing them to dehydrate. It is a mechanical pesticide, rather than chemical. It is used widely in grain storage facilities commercially and is not "voodoo."

    It is important to use FOOD grade DE, because the industrial grade (as found at swimming pool stores, etc) has too much powered silica which can be a health hazard when inhaled by both humans and chickens. It's much cheaper than buying chemical pesticides, which REALLY aren't good for you.

    Thanks for saying that. I was just gonna write something to that effect since is not holistic or voodoo but science.
     

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