Bedding for nesting boxes - please help :3

lillieegg

Chirping
5 Years
May 30, 2014
108
9
61
My Coop
My Coop
im getting new nesting boxes on Monday and I want to clean out the coop as well. But I was thinking about it and I wanted to know what you use for bedding in the nesting boxes. I use hay currently and it works ok except they kick it out every night! I know they aren't supposed to sleep in them but they do and they kick out all the hay and poop all inside it -.- they haven't started laying eggs yet but it seems like my oldest will be soon because she's getting to that age. So basically my question is what do you use for bedding in your nesting boxes? And also do you use something different for the floor of the coop?
 

Howlet

Chirping
5 Years
Jul 31, 2014
317
14
83
Maryland
My Coop
My Coop
sand is lovely for coop FLOOR bedding! im switching to it tomorrow actually! i researched and it told me in the winter sand holds the heat of the sun from a window and stays cool in the winter. plus, they can dust bathe! Not to mention its just like kitty litter so u can just get a scoop and easily remove the poop
bow.gif
lol.

As for the nest box, i dont think anything better then hay... care fresh small animal bedding or wood chips? mine lay in woodchips fine :p Well technically pine shavings XD and im painting some t'v's to look like houses and bust out the screen so they can just use them as boxes as well as a few random cabinets XD
 

lillieegg

Chirping
5 Years
May 30, 2014
108
9
61
My Coop
My Coop
sand is lovely for coop FLOOR bedding! im switching to it tomorrow actually! i researched and it told me in the winter sand holds the heat of the sun from a window and stays cool in the winter. plus, they can dust bathe! Not to mention its just like kitty litter so u can just get a scoop and easily remove the poop
bow.gif
lol.

As for the nest box, i dont think anything better then hay... care fresh small animal bedding or wood chips? mine lay in woodchips fine :p Well technically pine shavings XD and im painting some t'v's to look like houses and bust out the screen so they can just use them as boxes as well as a few random cabinets XD

That sounds awesome! I have been thinking about using sand for a while. And I was trying to compare hay and pine shaving and I'm getting so many mixed answers XD I guess right now my chickens think their poop is a comfortable bedding
sickbyc.gif
! I clean in out and they just kick it out!!! Hopefully they won't do that with the new stuff or hopefully they wont sleep in them
th.gif
But you use pine shavings right? How's that do? And do yours sleep in their boxes too?
 

islandgirl82

Songster
5 Years
Jul 4, 2014
1,426
316
198
Maine
Try to discourage them from sleeping in the nest boxes. You can move them to the roost after dark. The boxes should have been blocked off prior to them reaching POL (point of lay) to stop them from sleeping in them and then opened up just as they begin to show signs of laying. If they still have some time before they begin, you can block off the nests altogether so they don't even have the option and open them back up when they are ready. They don't like to lay in dirty nest and you'll find they'll search for alternative places to lay if they don't have clean boxes.

I use pine shavings and dried herbs in my nests. Hay is also fine to use.
 

lillieegg

Chirping
5 Years
May 30, 2014
108
9
61
My Coop
My Coop
Yeah I've seen that a lot but i didn't know how to stop them. I made them a little sleeping spot to snuggle in with a small wagon but they dont like it
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I'll try to block them off because I do want them to lay their eggs in their boxes not on the floor or something. Thanks for the tips
smile.png
 

Howlet

Chirping
5 Years
Jul 31, 2014
317
14
83
Maryland
My Coop
My Coop
That sounds awesome! I have been thinking about using sand for a while. And I was trying to compare hay and pine shaving and I'm getting so many mixed answers XD I guess right now my chickens think their poop is a comfortable bedding
sickbyc.gif
! I clean in out and they just kick it out!!! Hopefully they won't do that with the new stuff or hopefully they wont sleep in them
th.gif
But you use pine shavings right? How's that do? And do yours sleep in their boxes too?
no mine sleep ontop of a cabinet hanging on the wall XD but hey, who knows when im nto looking XD
 

Hokum Coco

Crowing
8 Years
Dec 6, 2012
4,274
3,641
477
New Brunswick,Canada
So basically my question is what do you use for bedding in your nesting boxes?
Nest boxes

In my nest boxes I fold a feed bag to fit (nest boxes are 1 ft³). When a bag gets soiled; fold a new one; pop out the soiled; pop in the new. Feed bags are a nylon mesh bag frozen poop just peels off in below freezing temperatures and just flakes off in summer when left out in the sun to bake and dry.


And also do you use something different for the floor of the coop?
Bedding

I have used all types of litter for coops.

I have not tried sand (sand gets good reviews on this site).

Of all the things I tried to date wood pellets have been the best. (I tried wood pellets as a last resort when pine shavings were not available.) They are super absorbent and swell up and eventually turn to saw dust. The droppings just seem to vanish and turn to dust when it comes in contact with wood pellets .

Replace my litter and clean my coop every October after I harvest my garden.


Works for me in my deep litter method. (I had to revert back to wood shaving when pellets were not available last year.)

I do add to pellets from time to time.

I have anywhere from 10 to 24 birds housed in my 4x8 coop.

Through the winter months the pellets froze harder than concrete with -40º temperatures. The poop froze before it could be absorbed by the pellets and there was like a crusty layer of poop in certain areas where they collectively took aim (no smell, messy feet or flies @ -40º). When the crust got big enough to handle with gloves I picked it up and dropped it into my compost bin. Come April things started to look after themselves.

POOP BOARDS are the "BEST" addition yet. Handles well over ½ of the poop in my set up keeps ammonia smell in check 3½" below roost excellent for catching eggs laid through the night (2x4 roost are in cups for easier removal and cleaning). I recently friction fit a piece of vinyl flooring over my poop board.it makes clean up even easier; Pop out; Scrap; Hose; Pop in.

Winter months even easier flex over compost bin DONE!

Easy peasy!.



 
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Foghornnmsprisy

In the Brooder
5 Years
Sep 6, 2014
72
11
41
Austin/Bastrop Texas
Make sure you're roosts are higher than you're nesting boxes. You don't want them pooping in the nests when they start to lay eggs. They poop all night from foraging right before they go to bed. Use cardboard to line the nesting boxes for ease of cleaning from poop or broken eggs. I'm going with sand on the floor and pine shavings in the boxes.
 

lillieegg

Chirping
5 Years
May 30, 2014
108
9
61
My Coop
My Coop
Thanks for all the tips guys! I have decided I'm going to do sand and pine shavings.
@Hokum Coco That's a really good method! The pet food I get in paper bags though :( and you're coop looks awesome!
 

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