Originally Posted by misapril
Thanks...that's what makes it so confusing...so much info and I'm not sure what is good and what's not good
Generally the best method is the one which suits your style of cleaning, the amount of time you have, what you have available for waste disposal methods and what your existing coop is (if you have a pre-existing structure) and even what type of birds you will raise....
Deep litter- works for nearly any floor surface, requires major clean out once or twice a year, minimal tending weekly, but it still does need some tending, results in large quantity of bedding and waste which can be hard to dispose of if you aren't in a rural location. Can help insulate and provide a little bit of warmth (through the decomposition process) Some folks don't like the appearance and it can smell horrible if you get an unusual amount of water in it (such as an ice dam causing a backup of rain run off around the base of your shed)
Sand floor- works great if you have a dry floor, such as a raised building or solid cement. It does not provide any additional warmth. It requires weekly raking or sifting to remove the heaviest of the waste but the waste can easily be disposed of (similar to how you would dispose of cat litter waste if you sift it). Smell is minimal and Sweet PDZ can be added to further reduce odor. You can add wood ashes or DE to the floor for dusting options, though both create large amounts of finer dust, so ventilation is very important if the birds like to dust on the floor. With a large open space you can throw scratch in on the floor during really poor weather and give them something to do.
Bedding- pine shavings or straw can be rather easy to clean, but can get expensive and you need a plan for disposal, requires frequent changing to keep it fresh.
I have to go but hopefully others will chime in with more.