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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 4:14 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Joined: Tue Aug 27, 2013 8:08 pm
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Location: Perth, WA
Hi there, so I am new to keeping chickens and I need some advice please :-)

I only have a small block so the chooks & chicks free range on my lawn & small veg patch. Being Perth it is hot, dry and sandy so we get a lot of ants in the summer which I would normally sprinkle ant dust near but now I have the feather-babies I am sure that is poisonous to them. Are there any chicken friendly ant repellants out there? Has anyone had good success with any of them? They are not in the coop yet but they are in the soil & nesting in my pool fencing which surrounds the "chook" foraging area.

I have also noticed that first thing when I let the girls out they eat my grass. They are particularly partial to the winter grass (good girls LOL) but as the dogs have decimated the lawn over winter I would normally be fertilising it about now to bring the growth back to be looking good before the heat of summer hits. I usually use Scotts lawn fertiliser which is a very small crumble, not the larger balls that can stay around for weeks, but they still take a few good rains/waters to dissipate.

Q1 - Are there any chicken friendly lawn fertilisers out there in a granulated form??

Q2 - How long after laying down whatever type of fertiliser can I let the chickens onto it safely?

:th :th :th

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 5:24 pm 
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Assist Admin
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Any of the ant dusts with permethrin will be safe with the added bonus of doing mites and lice on the hens if they dust bathe in it.
As to fertilisers, not sure. It will usually say on the box if its animal safe though.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 5:29 pm 
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Sultry Swan
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Location: mid victoria
all i have to offer is about the ants. we have diatomous earth also can be called d.e which i got posted from a qld company as i couldn't locate any locally. i got d.e as a long term form of pest control on my chooks but the idea is the same for all insects. the d.e abraids the insects joints and they dry out / die out.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 5:56 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Location: Perth, WA
Great to know the pyrethrins/permethrins (please confirm both are ok) are safe for chickens. PHEW!!! I am as natural as possible for my veg so it is good to know that most of wha I use for them to control the aphids & white butterfly, etc. that eat my goodies before they get to table is good for the chickens too!! :yess :yess

I can get D.E. locally - so if I broadcast this around my lawn and coop is it likely that the ants will bugger off and fin somewhere else to make their home???!!

OMG add some D.E. - sooo excited - is it really that easy??!!! If so how much D.E. to say 150sqm of earth......

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 10:27 pm 
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Sultry Swan
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Location: mid victoria
it will kill the ants and i put it out when it is dry as it washes away with rain.
my idea is i put the diatomous earth where i see the ants so i know that i get them or also if my kids had a favourite play area, there too.
it is great as if it got on food it is safe to eat so long as your d.e is food grade.
i was told it gets used as an insect killer in our grain for eating in case any are in it but i have not read this in any literature on it.

i hope there are more ideas for your lawn; unfortunately last summer was bad here and the grass died then the rain made mud. at last the mud dried but i am not sure if it is going to come back this year. :-|

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 10:54 pm 
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Champion Bird
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Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2011 11:26 pm
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Location: Tasmania
For your lawn only use an organic fertiliser.
Some time ago, there was a post on BYP about someone who had fertilised their orchard with a chemical granular fertiliser and the chooks ate it and died.
Scotts is NOT organic.
A product like Blood and Bone has a fine, sandy texture so you can water it in and it virtually disappears into the grass. Or use a liquid hose on product. Get a product high in nitrogen like Nitrosol which is organic or Munn's Organic Lawn Booster.


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