When can the chicks "graduate" from paper towel to the pine shavings??

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by gimme sum eggs, Mar 26, 2009.

  1. gimme sum eggs

    gimme sum eggs In the Brooder

    Jan 29, 2009
    South Branch, MI
    We have 9 pullets coming withing the next 2 days, along with whatever packing peanuts Ideal sends us. The brooder is all set. Just wondering when you's take the paper towel off and let 'em walk on the pine shavings.

  2. birdsofparadise

    birdsofparadise Songster

    Nov 15, 2008
    North Kohala, Hawaii
    I tried the paper towel trick, but gave up when they kept trying to get under it. The past three broods I ordered, I put them straight on to shavings with no problems. The real difficulty if if they are on a slick surface like newspaper. That is said to cause leg development problems.
  3. LovinMyPeeps

    LovinMyPeeps Sees Wine Dots

    Mar 22, 2009
    Heuvelton, NY
    Mine are at a week and 1/2, eating fine, know the feeders and I gave up the papertowels. They make a mess of them anyway. I put a piece of pine board under the feeder and waterer and this keeps the shavings out of both making cleaning WAY easier...
  4. firedove

    firedove Songster

    Nov 10, 2008
    Fitzwilliam NH
    I kept mine on towels til they were a week old (so 4 days after I got them). It was plenty for them, by then they knew what was what and I wasn't going to keep laying down fresh paper towels twice a day.
  5. Lucy4

    Lucy4 Songster

    I kept mine on the paper towels (on top of the shavings) for 24 hours. They were just fine when I removed them.
  6. sugarbush

    sugarbush Songster

    Jul 24, 2008
    Lexington KY
    I always start mine on shavings, no paper towels.
  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    I don't know that there is a set time for them to learn what their real food is. It probably depends on the specific chicks. I'd guess two or three days is plenty.

    The problem with chicks eating the shavings to the point of injuring or killing themselves is a lot like many other precautions you take. It's not going to happen every time. It probably happens fairly seldom. But it does happen. And sometimes you may not realize what caused or contributed to a chick dying.

    Not every chick raised on newspaper will be spraddle-legged. A predator might not enter your coop tonight if you leave the coop door open. I could use other examples but I think these are pretty clear and probably overly dramatic. I just consider the paper towels a precaution that could prevent a problem.

    Editted to add: Just my personal opinion.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2009

  8. noriko

    noriko Songster

    Nov 9, 2008
    N E Pennsylvania
    I have 11 chicks on the paper towel in the brooder now. Some of my babies rip the paper towel & eat them. They taste good to them....maybe [​IMG] So, it's time for them to move to the pine shavings. Oh anyway,they are almost two weeks old. It's not easy for me to change their paper towel all the time. My older chicks are on the pine shaving now. They are in the guestroom. My older chicks on the pine shaving make a lot of mess. Everyone call the room "Chicken's Room".... My chicken room is soooo dusty..... I have to clean up well later on.... [​IMG] Noriko.
  9. gimme sum eggs

    gimme sum eggs In the Brooder

    Jan 29, 2009
    South Branch, MI
    Thanks for the replies. Think i'm gunna give it 2 days on the paper towel and then take it out. I got a phone call from the post office a 1/2 hour after posting this to tell me the babies were here!

    All arrived well except for one. It can't stand up and its butt looks like the last part of its "intestine" is outside its body by maybe 1/4" or so. Its really red and it pulsates every time the lil' chick peeps so I think its not pasty butt. I'll post some pics on another thread later today to see if we
    can help this little one out. Have to wait until stepdaughter gets home from school with the digi-cam.
  10. cassie

    cassie Crowing

    Mar 19, 2009
    I put down shavings and cover them with newspapers before I put in the new chicks. I spread some feed on the paper as well as having the feeders full. I remove the papers after 24 hours. By then they seem to have figured out where the feeders are. I have meat chicks. Hope this helps.

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