General question: How many of you have sand floors for your coops, and how deep and what kind of sand is needed (I know there have been discussions about sand type in the past, and I could indeed search and find it, but I might as well ask again!)?
What do you use as a pooper scooper?
I'm not sure it would work with our setup. The coop is rectangular and right now dirt plus straw plus chicken poop (we do a big dig-out once a year to get as much old junk out as possible). The henhouse is inside the coop, but elevated about 3 feet off the floor of the coop, and it has a wood floor with straw right now.
Those of you who use sand, is that all you use? No straw? Because I know if I left straw in the henhouse, it will wind up all over the place. Most will stay in the henhouse, but some will make its way to the floor of the coop. Since both are straw, it does not matter now.
I would really like to make poop removal easier than it is now. The only darned good thing about freezing cold weather is the poop doesn't smell and is easier to remove (as long as you have a hoe or sharp implement to hack it off where it has stuck to something else).
Our birds poop a lot more in the henhouse in the winter--maybe it's because they are in there longer instead of outside in the chickenyard, since of course we all know chickens despise snow. They actually poop more in the henhouse than on the coop floor, which is 3 times larger in area. You'd think they could do me a favor and at least spread it around.
I'm just wondering if we could make sand work on the floor of the coop (probably yes) and maybe in the henhouse, too? Do you "sand people" put it in the henhouse as well? No straw anywhere?
Sorry to sound stupid. I've just never seen one in person, and it's not within my veterinary medicine knowledge base. I just want to know as much as possible, since it will be a pain to have the sand hauled back there (plus the primary expense of putting it in the first time). I'm sure it has to be partially replenished periodically. But I wonder whether it's worth it, both from a cost and ease of use perspective. We have about 35 birds right now in three enclosures, each with an elevated henhouse inside the coops.
THANK YOU ALL in advance for trying to educate me on the pluses and minuses of sand bedding vs. straw.
i don't know about sand but i do know i do not use straw as when it breaks down it harbors bacteria that can give humans farmers lung and as much as i love my hens i want to eliminate the risk to my health.
Inhalation of the bacteria can cause the disease farmer's lung, a type of hypersensitivity pneumonitis. Handling hay bales increases exposure to the bacteria and increases the risk of developing the disease