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Why do my chicks, & chickens in general, like to dig and lie in dirt??

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by wawafiveseven, Jun 30, 2009.

  1. wawafiveseven

    wawafiveseven Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 8, 2009
    Why do my chicks, & chickens in general, like to dig and lie in dirt??
    My chicks like to dig and take dirt baths and lie in the dirt. They're about 6 weeks old now. (And it's not like it's super hot, it's only about 85 degrees lately) So today, they found the dirt and started to kick up dirt and lie in it and bathe in it. After a while, I was able to just scoop them up and they wouldnt kick or flap their wings. They looked dazed, or dare I say it, stoned [​IMG]. My pair of chickens before would do the same thing but they wouldnt act like that afterward. SO is this normal?? lol
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. TennesseeTruly

    TennesseeTruly Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 5, 2009
    Church Hill, TN
    This is VERY normal. Its almost like they're sunbathing!! I love it!! Mine do it too and I have a chair in my run and I sit there daily watching them.

    Relax and enjoy them!

    Laurie
     
  3. wawafiveseven

    wawafiveseven Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 8, 2009
    but it's not in the sun, its in the shade ....
     
  4. hollyandty

    hollyandty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 3, 2009
    North Pole, Alaska
    My chickens love to take a bath in my plants so I got a tub and put last years soil in it with some ashes from my wood stove and a little DE ( for bugs ) and mixed it up. Boy were they in heaven (like you said it's like they are stoned) Our winters are long so I am going to make sure there is a tub in the coop all winter.
     
  5. wawafiveseven

    wawafiveseven Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 8, 2009
    Yay, I'm so glad I'm not the only one that thinks that theyre a little out there (stoned) when they bathe in dirt. But why? I'm sorry, it just puzzles me so much..
     
  6. Jena

    Jena The Welsh Witch

    Nov 2, 2008
    Cardiff
    Because they are cleaning themselves by passing the dirt through their feathers and that makes them feel good.

    If you watch small wild birds at this time of year they also like to dustbath, They get layers of oil build up on the feathers and the dust is the best way to clean it off, so they just feel calm and relaxed and happy after they have had a good dustbath.

    Imagine how you feel after a long pampering soak in a luxury bath, well it is the chicken version you are watching. lol...

    Just enjoy watching them play.
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2009
  7. lakeshorenc

    lakeshorenc Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 14, 2009
    Lake Waccamaw NC
    Mine do it to get cool. They will dig down to the sand and lay there, sometimes upside down. My friend came over the other day and thought 2 of my girls were dead and they looked that way on their backs with their eyes closed. [​IMG]
     
  8. wawafiveseven

    wawafiveseven Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 8, 2009
    Lol, Thats cute!! My pair of chicks get so dirty!! The pair I had before them were way cleaner, they wouldnt roll around in the dirt as much as the ones I have now. Kinda weird cuz theyre the same breed n everything..
     
  9. Dirt Road

    Dirt Road Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 9, 2008
    Southern Idaho
    Birds generally like to take dust baths because the dust tends to clog the breathing pores of parasites, mostly lice, which stay on the bird. That's why people add DE to the dust box. The behavior is not a thought out thing, rather, an instinctual matter. Might be compared to folks who enjoy taking a nice long bath or shower, when they could be clean and out in minutes.

    Jim
     
  10. deomaha

    deomaha New Egg

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    Apr 21, 2016
    They are like dogs or horses rolling in dirt, dirt cleans of parasites. As,well as cooling.
     

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