Sand for grit?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Hufflefluff, Mar 6, 2017.

  1. Hufflefluff

    Hufflefluff Songster

    Apr 28, 2015
    Northeast CO
    We got three new chicks from our local feed store two days ago; two EE and one Cuckoo Marans. The EE were sold as day olds (but because the store gets them shipped from hatcheries they're probably about 4 days old) and the lady at the feed store told us the Marans had been there for about a week already. They're doing well, and regulating temp hasn't been a problem, but I'm wondering when to start feeding them food scraps and grit. Historically we've started when our girls reach about week with bits of banana and berries and the like, but I'm not sure if that's too young for the EE as they aren't a week yet. I know that they'd forage on nature, but at the same time I'd like to let them settle in a little more and let them get used to our chick food.

    Also, I'm wondering what to use for grit. We have an old sandbox on our property; will sand work or is it too small? The sand has also been grimy, covered, and bug infested for the part few years, and while it looks fine and doesn't smell or clump I'm still wondering if it's okay to use. If I pop it in the over for a while first to kill off germs will that work?

    Thanks for any help :)
  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Free Ranging

    Apr 6, 2014
    Melrose Park Illinois
    Stay away from giving chicks sand as grit. It is too fine. They also do not need grit to eat starter feed crumbles, or soft food like bananas or berries. Chickens need grit when they eat grains. You also want to avoid outdoor soils/sands to avoid getting cocci into young chicks. Your chicks may have been vaccinated, or not. Read up on coccidiosis on some threads here . Ounce of prevention worth more than a pond of cure.
    Here is another source for cocci information. http://www.chickenwhisperermagazine...chickens-transmission-diagnosis-and-treatment
    1 person likes this.
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    I generally don't add too much extra stuff to their diet until after 4 weeks, though I do feed scrambled eggs as a daily treat and protein boost. I don't usually add grit. I will add a chunk of clean sod from my yard if it is warm enough for it to be growing, and they will consume things from the soil, otherwise I have used parakeet grit, and regular clean sand should work too. The stuff from the sandbox should be okay too.
  4. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Flockless Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
  5. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    May 19, 2009
    Sand doesn't, work as chick grit. It is too fine. It is also not a pure source of insoluable stone. The reason to feed grit after one week old is to exercise the gizzard as the bird grows
    One wants the gizzards in their birds as large and as healthy as possible. You are porabaly not going to see changes on the outside as your birds grow. It is all happening inside as the grit makes a stronger, larger, healthier gizzard. Look up :gran-i-grit PDF : on the net. That folder will explain it along with feeding schedule for different sizes of grit. Stop listening to people who say grit size and content doesn't matter when raising
    Chicks. It does and there is a definite science to feeding grit to poultry. The poultry farmers in USA in 1930's discovered it and their collective clamor for proper sized insoluable granite grit started the poultry grit industry in USA. Best, Karen
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2017
    1 person likes this.
  6. Hufflefluff

    Hufflefluff Songster

    Apr 28, 2015
    Northeast CO
    Oh wow, thank you so much for this information. I read up on the cocci risk from outdoor soils/ sands, which was enlightening, thank you. :D

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