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Thread: Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick

  1. #1
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    Default Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick

    I have been considering putting a Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick out in the yard for the squirrels, the kind you get at a farm store.

    The brick says on it Supplement for Livestock and Horses. It also says warning, this product contains supplemental copper, do not feed to sheep or other copper sensitive species.

    Are squirrels sensitive to copper?

    On that note, I have a copper bird bath they drink out of regularly. I have other water dishes made of ceramics. I've noticed that the copper dish never incubates mosquito larvae, whereas the ceramic ones will grow mosquitoes if I don't clean them often. Thus I suspect the copper does to a degree get into the water, I have always wondered if this is a problem for squirrels. Does anyone know? What is nice about the copper bird bath is that it does not grow algae or mosquitoes!

    The reason I am thinking about putting out a mineralized salt brick is for three reasons:
    1. My recent release CJ is constantly licking the underside of a resin top outdoor patio table. He also licks the iron rusty base legs.
    2. Yard squirrels are often licking my terracotta pots that are oxidizing with something white on them.
    3. Squirrels in my area are still licking the asphalt road.

    So with all of this, I wondered about putting out a mineral block.

    This block I can get locally has salt in it. It also has mineral oil which I don't think is good for animals. I think Redmonds Real Salt makes a block that might have only the minerals in salt, not the mineral oil.

    Any thoughts on offering any type of mineralized salt brick to backyard animals who are licking tables, pots and asphalt? Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick

    Hi, there!

    If you decide to put out a salt block go with a natural one like these: https://www.smartpakequine.com/ps/hi...alt-licks-4870

    They do not formulate or process or compress them - it is a literal chunk of earth from the Himalayan mountains. All natural with zero additives!

    Hope this helps!

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    Lighten-Up (09-10-2021), Mel1959 (09-11-2021)

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick

    The lic. rehabber that helped me all those years ago with our squirrel, warned me about not adding salt to the diet of a squirrel. So I removed the salt block and replaced it with this far more balanced source of macro and micro minerals, formulated to be much like the content of mineral rich clay deposits in South America, where birds and many other creatures visit to ingest the clay. Eating soil, aka: 'geophagy', is a common behavior in mammals, including the tree squirrels of North America.

    When extra salt is added to the diet from including a salt block, it creates an imbalance. Minerals need to be given together in synergistic ratios, not alone. Same with B vitamins. Research in rats and mice has long since confirmed that diets high in salt (sodium chloride) causes dehydration that promotes the formation of kidney stones, is hard on the kidneys especially in older animals, promotes osteoarthritis, and elevates blood pressure level as it is hard on the entire cardiovascular system.

    After our girl finished the meal, she would go straight for her, "Manu" mineral block to take some scrapes; then she went right over to get a drink from her water bottle. Every day it was the same; from this we knew she was getting an additional source of minerals that is balanced for small animals. And though it was an easy and convenient way to supply additional minerals in the diet; since that time I learned that there are better sources that include natural sourced forms of minerals and vitamins that the body is better able to utilize.

    This is the, "Manu Mineral Block.

    https://www.amazon.com/Avian-Special...03SLUFSA&psc=1

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  6. #4
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    Default Re: Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick

    Thank you cassgrimm for pointing out a more natural salt block. I do not like processed things, I much prefer natural.

    And thank you Diggie's Friend for pointing out the squirrels don't really need salt.

    I have been feeling like I wanted to give more minerals, but only knew of them in the salt form, that is why I was asking. I will get this manu block.

    Can it be left out in the rain, or do I need to build a roof for it to be outside for my wild squirrels?

    Thanks so much I really appreciate it.

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  8. #5
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    Default Re: Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick

    Though our pet squirrel liked the block over all other calcium blocks, I haven't seen our wilds chew on it. Wilds consume the soil that surrounds the roots of grasses that contains minerals and probiotics that lends support to their health and digestion. It won't hurt to try and see if they take an interest in it. The clay is compressed; as long as it doesn't sit in standing water it may be ok.

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  10. #6
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    Default Re: Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick

    Quote Originally Posted by Diggie's Friend View Post
    Though our pet squirrel liked the block over all other calcium blocks, I haven't seen our wilds chew on it. Wilds consume the soil that surrounds the roots of grasses that contains minerals and probiotics that lends support to their health and digestion. It won't hurt to try and see if they take an interest in it. The clay is compressed; as long as it doesn't sit in standing water it may be ok.
    Oh, I understand now that was for your indoor squirrel. I will still try it, because I have wilds that daily lick my terra cotta pots and my release still licks the underside of an outdoor table and the rusty iron legs. And I still see squirrels licking the asphalt road, they are looking for something.... I'll experiment. Thanks again! I'll post back in a while to let you know what the wilds thought of it.

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  12. #7
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    Default Re: Red Trace Mineralized Salt Brick

    Good plan since they are interested in ingesting soil, which includes clay deposits. Red clays are typically very high in iron content, which doesn't make it a good choice for a supplement source.In the West the soil is (calciferous), dominantly higher in calcium. Yet in the East (feriferous), dominantly higher in iron. In both regions there are still deposits of the less dominant base of iron and calcium. And though Dolomite has a closer, far more optimum Ca:Mg ratio than the Manu block, it may also contain heavy metals. Moreover, with wilds having access to magnesium, that is especially high in nuts and seeds, this mineral isn't deficient in their diets. This is what makes the Manu block a very good fit as a supplemental mineral source for them.

    Manu comes in two sizes; the small size and the large size. It comes with a boit and wingnut to attach to a cage; this could though be used to attach to wood or another structure. Since from fall through winter deciduous trees lose their leaves, you would need to find a place for the mineral block where it is secluded and there is coverage from above. Over the rest of the year when the trees are in leaf you may have more options as to where to place it.

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    Lighten-Up (09-12-2021)

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