Outdoor Bathing

Our chickens made a dust bath for themselves in their coop on the first day we got them. There was sand and soil on one side and grass on the other. They dug up the grass and made a depression in the soil and that’s where they bathed. Then they set up a secondary bath on the sand side of the coop. Our chickens are clean freaks and anyone who says chickens bathe once a week has a different sort than mine. Isabel has been spotted bathing twice a day.

Now that we let them out free ranging, they have made at least one more bath tub. The one under the rose bush gets deeper by the day.

Here’s Rosie enjoying a long soak. She can spend a half an hour in the bath. Seriously, all she’s missing is some Beethoven playing in the background, a few candles scattered around the rim and a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon to complete the scene for a de-stressing bath.

I’m pretty sure she took a couple of naps in the middle of this bath. More microsleeps I suppose. She totally stopped moving, her lower lid slid up and her head sunk until her beak touched the ground. Sort of like a princess in her private bath I guess. Whatever, it’s very funny to watch.

The photo above is lightly out of focus but look at the dirt under her wing. Dirt will fall out for a couple of hours after a bath (stand back when they shake) and if one of the girls bathes too late in the day, the paper under their roost is thick in dirt in the morning.

Isabel and Rosie are clean freaks. To be honest, I think Bronwyn begrudges the time spent doing anything other than eating. I rarely catch her bathing, but I have petted her when she’s full of sand so I know she does get her head out of the food trough sometimes.


About Laura Rittenhouse

I'm an American-Australian author, gardener and traveller. Go to my writing website: www.laurarittenhouse.com for more. If you're trying to find my gardening blog, it's here.
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4 Responses to Outdoor Bathing

  1. Haven’t had chooks since I was a kid (and that was a long time ago, let me tell ou!), but I remember those holes, and remember the chooks snuggling down in them – so that’s what they were doing! Isn’t it nice to know things:)

    • After posting this comment I looked out my back window to see what the chooks were up to. I kid you not, all 3 were in one big dust bath – a new one created today. They kept kicking dirt on each other and Bronwyn and Isabel spent a bit of time back-to-back pushing for all they were worth trying to grow their bath space. I stood and watched them for about 15 minutes before Bronwyn finally got out of the “tub” and let the other 2 girls continue their dig. I tell you, these creatures are an endless source of entertainment.

  2. cooktocure says:


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