My chickens love a dust bath. They love to roll around, fluff out their feathers, squirm and wriggle in them. On a sunny day they will stretch out one leg and a wing and sunbathe. Honestly! My Sporty Friend thought I was joking when I told her that but it’s true. Chickens love to sunbathe! My chickens think the Ultimate Dust Bath can be found in the freshly turned over soil in my raised vege beds. This is fine when the vege beds are empty of veges but when they’re full of tender little plants they’re off limits to my feathered friends!
I decided to make my own dust bath for them in their coop. Mr Fig raised an eyebrow and rolled his eyes when I told him of my intentions. He walked away on a breath of words including “pampered chickens”,” they’re only birds”,” you don’t make me dust baths”…actually he didn’t say that about making him a dust bath but you get the drift. He thinks I’m a bit eccentric when it comes to my chicks. I’ve been known to sit in the coop and guard new chickens that have been introduced to an existing flock in my early chicken caring days. Anyhow, here’s how I made my new dust baths :
I had some posts left over from a broken archway so I simply recycled these to make a border for the dust bath. I then pinched some soil from the vege garden and added plain old fashioned wood ash from our fire that has been sitting around for a while in the car port.
I love a free by-product. Recycling and free – happy days! I also added some herbs to the dust bath; not just to look pretty but for their anti-parasitic and anti-bacterial benefits. Choose any or all from the list below:
Dill – anti-oxidant and relaxant
Lavender – stress reliever and insecticide
Lemon balm – stress reliever and anti-bacterial
Mint – insecticide
Pineapple sage – aromatic
Rosemary – aromatic
Yarrow – stress reliever
Here it is all ready for some chickens…. hello chickens?! Look at the lovely dustbath I’ve lovingly made for you!
Now my chickens aren’t stressed that I know of; the dog had to see a psychologist but that’s another story…. Strictly speaking the stress reliever herbs probably don’t need to go in the dust bath but I did wonder if I might add them to the nesting boxes. One of my chickens lays an enormous egg every other day and I think a little bit of stress relief might be welcomed by her!
What do you make of all this Twiggy?
Ah, I think thy’re very happy with my efforts. Right, I’m filthy from all that work I’m off for a bath (water in case you’re wondering!)