Wood Ash

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by carladababe, Jan 8, 2014.

  1. carladababe

    carladababe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've read a couple posts that use wood ash for their chickens dust bath. I burn oak and walnut in our wood burning stove, and I usually start with fat wood but because of the freezing weather (and I don't use that word lightly,) the stove has been "on" for the last few days. Safe to use? Do I just pile a bucket full of cooled down ash in the corner of the coop? [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2014
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    You need to be sure the ashes are completely cold. Personally I wouldn't do this in the coop.
     
  3. carladababe

    carladababe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for the quick reply, is ash ok to use in the run? I've never used it before, my chickens usually have their dust bath in a protected area of the house but with the cold weather and all they won't go out on the snow. Anything to make my girls more comfortable short of moving us all to the Bahamas (and yes after -20 degree days it has crossed my mind.)[​IMG]
     
  4. Farmer Viola

    Farmer Viola Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yep! This is exactly what I do. Well, I spread the bucket of ash around the run, and they mix it in with everything. If you have one good dust bathing area, that sounds even better!

    I also have a wood stove for heat, and we just collect the ash from the bottom in a metal bucket. It takes a couple days to fill it, so I know it's cool enough by then.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2014
  5. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    The only precaution I can think of is, you don't want them inhaling a lot of dust. (You might end up coming back here to ask why they are sneezing!)
     
  6. cubalaya

    cubalaya Overrun With Chickens

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    i would think the silica dust from de would be more harmful than ash dust. i have used it for 30 years in my runs.
     
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  7. carladababe

    carladababe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for the replies, I think I'll try it after the rain[​IMG] we're suppose to get tomorrow.
     
  8. Messipaw

    Messipaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I. I'm thinking of doing the same thing. I'm going to mix some sand and DE together and pick a corner to dump it in. I'm so scared of mites and lice.
     
  9. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    I definitely agree with this. DE is a known respiratory irritant and needs to be handled only while wearing a mask. But the chickens don't have masks. I used to dust with it in my garden for grub type pests, which it does work on, but I sure coughed and sneezed for a while if I inhaled inside a cloud of it. But then I'm one of those who about won't use DE around my chickens. I admit I have used it against fire ants in a broody's nest.

    On another thread, someone mentioned that using large quantities of wood ash could create too much dust; perhaps the person intended to make a dust bath of nothing but wood ash. I thought it was probably a valid point. Obviously, I would think, too much of any kind of dust is not a good thing to inhale.
     
  10. carladababe

    carladababe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I fully agree with the precautions needed when using DE. I use it under fresh shavings and when I change out the sand in the run. I did one year out of desperation use it against the evil blister beetle, and it worked, but as a last resort.
     

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