Chickens love to take baths, not in water, but in dust.
Backyard chickens and barnyard chickens should have constant access to a dust box or dust hole.
Dusting bath powder absorbs excess oil in the chicken’s feathers and skin. The thorough shaking and feather ruffling after a dust bath dislodges dirt, dander and feather flakes.
Using dusting bath powder encourages preening. Preening releases new oils that spread over the feathers to keep them in good condition and waterproof.
Lumino is sharing their formula for 15 lbs. of their Dusting Bath Powder;
Start with 8 Lbs Lumino’s OMRI (Organic Materials Review Institute) listed Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth for Poultry.
2 Lbs. Oyster Shell Flour
2 Lbs. Bentonite Sodium Clay
2 Lbs. Alfalfa Meal, crushed
1/2 Lbs. Glacial Rock Dust
1/2 Lbs. Play Sand, washed and screened play sand
Providing bathing facilities for the “ladies couldn’t be easier. Fill a kitty litter box, wood tub or plastic container half full of dusting bath powder. Place in a dry warm place, especially during cold months. Add additional powder as level drops and keep free of droppings and foreign material.
A heavy-duty plastic tub with a seal tight lid makes an ideal box. It can be moved around easily. Left open on sunny days, it can be moved into the coop during inclement weather. Be sure the box or tub is sturdy as the ladies often perch on the sides waiting for their turn.
If the dust box is located in the coop, place the chickens’ food at the opposite end to help keep it clean. For free-range chickens you can use a box or dig a hole in a sheltered area to keep it dry.
It is very important to have a dust bath in the coop in cold climates where hens may be inside for long periods of time.
All of the above ingredients should be available at farm, feed and gardens retailers.
To find a retailer near you that sells OMRI Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth, visit Diatomaceous Earth Hotline.
You may also visit LuminoPets.com for more information.