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Nesting Box Bedding

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

We just started getting eggs a few days ago, so we're pretty excited about that, but I was wondering if anyone has any good recommendations for what to use on the bottom of a nesting box.  We've put pine shavings in them, but the chickens scratch it all out every time they go in.  I wouldn't worry about it, but we've already had a couple eggs crack, I'm guessing because they were laid right on the wooden bottom of the nesting box.

Does anyone have any good ideas for what I can line the bottom of the boxes with that is removable for cleaning, cheap or free, and might cushion the eggs a bit?  Should I not even worry about this and hope the shells will get stronger as they continue laying?

Also, I've got one that lays on the floor of the coop.  Two or three others have found the nesting boxes and have been using them, but this one just keeps laying on the floor.  Does anyone have any ideas about how to entice her to lay in a box.  We've got 13 hens, and 6 nesting boxes, so I don't think it's an issue with the boxes being too crowded.

Has: 5 Barred Rocks, 5 Buff Orpingtons, 3 Araucanas, 2 cats.
Lives In: Walla Walla, WA
Works for: Video Production Company Mechan Media
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Has: 5 Barred Rocks, 5 Buff Orpingtons, 3 Araucanas, 2 cats.
Lives In: Walla Walla, WA
Works for: Video Production Company Mechan Media
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post #2 of 24

I wouldn't use hay wink they tend to eat it and get impacted crops. I just sticks that fall from the tree lol it works tongue but it irritates me when they take them out! I used to have pine shavings and they made a mess! I used hay and they also made a mess...then I knew it was bad for chickens so I removed the hay. So instead I used sticks and stuck them in there so they couldn't take them out and it worked big_smile but if you're going to use sticks use thin ones wink thick ones will crack the eggs.

Black & White = my life.
 

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Black & White = my life.
 

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post #3 of 24

I use the weeds that I pull from the garden. I just put a huge pile in the nesting box. They sort of flatten as they dry and as the hens sit on them. They're free, plentiful, and easy to change. Good luck!

Wife, mom to 3 children, and caretaker to 45 hens, 2 rabbits, 1 cat, 2 goldfish, 3 frogs (and looking for a puppy)
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Wife, mom to 3 children, and caretaker to 45 hens, 2 rabbits, 1 cat, 2 goldfish, 3 frogs (and looking for a puppy)
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post #4 of 24

welcome-byc from Ohio I'm glad to see you've joined us! I use straw for my hens to nest on. They like to scratch & re-arrange it daily. I add a fresh clump daily. I like to keep things fresh, since I plan to eat these eggs. A big bale of straw costs $5.00 out here in Ohio & lasts 2-3 months, so I find straw to be a good bedding material. It fits my budget & is easily replaced. If you can't find bales of straw, try some pine shavings NOT cedar cedar shavings can be toxic. If you use pine shavings, you could use a kitty litter scooper to clean :frowit out easily.Good luck, my new chicken loving friend!frow

~ MARIE~, ZOey's nana in COOLville, Ohio
1 rooster(OEGame/Andalusian mix), 1 B.A./OEG hen,1 Black Jersey Giant hen, 1 Black Astralorp hen; 1 - ~White Plymouth Rock "Klucky". 1~Delaware hen.
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~ MARIE~, ZOey's nana in COOLville, Ohio
1 rooster(OEGame/Andalusian mix), 1 B.A./OEG hen,1 Black Jersey Giant hen, 1 Black Astralorp hen; 1 - ~White Plymouth Rock "Klucky". 1~Delaware hen.
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post #5 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by vstoltzfus 

I use the weeds that I pull from the garden. I just put a huge pile in the nesting box. They sort of flatten as they dry and as the hens sit on them. They're free, plentiful, and easy to change. Good luck!


do u get bugs on your weeds ? Do they eat the weeds in the nest? how think of bedding do you put in your nest?  How often do u change the nest?
thank you

We have 10 chickens 1 silver campine,2 hen buff Orpington,3 hen n 1 roo who is disability Australorp /Cochin mix, 2 hen Leghorn started laying 7-19,2010  They  came to us on April 4 2010 one week old. got 3 more 8/14/10 BR  2EE young HENS
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We have 10 chickens 1 silver campine,2 hen buff Orpington,3 hen n 1 roo who is disability Australorp /Cochin mix, 2 hen Leghorn started laying 7-19,2010  They  came to us on April 4 2010 one week old. got 3 more 8/14/10 BR  2EE young HENS
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post #6 of 24

I use seat cushions

CLICK IT

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CLICK IT

http://dragcave.net/user/WATERwing <-- GIVE ME VIEWS AND CLICKS !! I HAVE A GOLD EGG !!


http://dragcave.net/user/IwannaBEaMERMAID

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post #7 of 24

I would go with a very thick layer of pine shavings. That is what we use and after a few tries with other bedding materials that didn't work out so awesome, this has been the best option. We have a 6" kick board at the front of our boxes to make sure the chickens don't kick out all the bedding and we layer about 8" squishing it down.

Lupin Farm [Labradoodles] + A Pretty Little Wilderness
Small Hobby Farm + Miniature Labradoodles
www.lupinfarm.com
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Lupin Farm [Labradoodles] + A Pretty Little Wilderness
Small Hobby Farm + Miniature Labradoodles
www.lupinfarm.com
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post #8 of 24

Pine shavings.

post #9 of 24

I get a bale of straw which is $3 here in Michigan. Keep it in garage and use it as needed.  I agree with Mareezocool, it is cheap and lasts a long time.

The best sermons are lived, not preached!
Keep smiling,
Dave
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The best sermons are lived, not preached!
Keep smiling,
Dave
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post #10 of 24

Pine shavings.  I got a few broken eggs in the beginning but not anymore.  They do move the shavings completely out of the way tho, no matter how much i put in.

I need to join CBA...Coop Builders Anonymous
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I need to join CBA...Coop Builders Anonymous
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