Why the heck do my chicks keep eating pine shavings?!

Pet Duck Boy

Songster
10 Years
Dec 12, 2009
1,373
17
161
Orlando, FL
Last week my chicks have been well behaved, for chickens at least. But the past 2 days they've gone on a food strike. Instead of eating their chick starter they eat ONLY pine shavings. What's with that? They had completely ignored it...not single peck. Are they really that stupid? What makes wood shavings so appetizing? It wasn't just a slight nibble, it was their food. It made me really worried so I finally switched back to layers of paper towel. It's day 16, I thought they got over this. They did it their first week, but now?! I liked the wood shavings much more, the dropings would fall to the bottom and I wouldn't see them. Making it much more appealing to the eye. Plus with paper towel they step all over their poop. Will they get over this eventually? These are my first chickens...so this behavior puzzles me.
 

bigstack

Songster
10 Years
Jan 4, 2010
1,155
5
174
Texarkana, TX
I have not had this problem with my 6 RIR.
fl.gif
They are on pine shavings. The 42 JG's are on pine chips. I love the chips! They deffinately do a better job! I wish I had an answer. I will keep an eye out for answers. I hope someone has some. LOL

Good Luck and God Bless!
 

Pet Duck Boy

Songster
10 Years
Dec 12, 2009
1,373
17
161
Orlando, FL
Actually I didn't start with shavings, I kept them on shredded paper for the first 5 days. They showed no interest in that, then I switched to the shavings for a day. They did eat a little, but not alot. I switched to layers of paper towel and after 2 days finally switched back to wood shavings. Everything was fine until 2 days ago, then they suddenly started gulping down shavings instead of chick starter.
 
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tdgill

Crowing
11 Years
Jan 28, 2009
3,028
49
266
Cecil Co. MD - 5Yrs. Chickens 4Yrs. Ducks
just so you know you're not alone...lol. Mine did the same thing and I did the same as you. Put in the shavings, then dump them back out. Twice. lol. Regarding the previous post, I did not have mine on shavings from the start. I wondered if different size shavings would have made a difference. Mine were small and soft and since then I have seen larger and heavier/more coarse shavings. Hope to see more posts regarding this. I mean they did survive but it would still bother me. I would assume chick grit would need to be available too....
 

Buck Creek Chickens

Have Incubator, Will Hatch
11 Years
Nov 26, 2008
4,376
33
259
Neenah, WI
did you change something , feeders, waters, where they are

I keep mine on PPtowel for the first 7 days, feed on the floor for 2 days, then switch to the feeder, so they get the idea to the difference
 
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Pet Duck Boy

Songster
10 Years
Dec 12, 2009
1,373
17
161
Orlando, FL
Quote:
Not really. I did switch around the feeder and waterer after the first week. But it's past the second week and suddenly they do this.
 

Buck Creek Chickens

Have Incubator, Will Hatch
11 Years
Nov 26, 2008
4,376
33
259
Neenah, WI
what about a draft, a change they don't like can get them to do silly stuff, the one thing you are going to have to watch is growth rate with these, the shavings can and will get caught in the crop and hold up growth rate.
 

Pet Duck Boy

Songster
10 Years
Dec 12, 2009
1,373
17
161
Orlando, FL
Actually I had turned the fan on to help get the dust out of the brooder. Could that cause them to do things like this? I'll go turn it off.
 

Turner

Songster
10 Years
Jan 2, 2010
148
1
100
Northeast OH
I would make sure that your feed is not bad or off smelling. A bit of shavings won't hurt but something else must be going on. I would try to get big shavings - some feed stores have different brands of shavings some finer than others. Do you feed meal, crumbles or pellets?
 

MANNA-PRO

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