Bedding: Straw vs Pine Shavings

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Buster, Nov 14, 2008.

  1. Buster

    Buster Back to Work

    When I first got my chickens I used pine shavings as bedding and really liked it. I use the deep litter method and I never had problems with odor or wet bedding as long as I kept up with it. That wasn't hard to do because it was relatively low maintenance.

    DW and I decided to try straw because it is so much cheaper than shavings. We bought 30 bales for $1 a bale. It was nice at first but I learned quickly that it constantly has to be thrown out and fresh straw put in. I can't use the deep litter method that I had previously been using. The straw just doesn't have the same absorption as the shavings did. My coop is damp and "gooey" and doesn't smell good after a very short time.

    Tomorrow, I'm going to go buy about 100 cubic feet of pine shavings. It's time to get back to what worked for me.
     
  2. Nifty-Chicken

    Nifty-Chicken Administrator Staff Member

    Yeah, I can't believe that people use straw. My brother used it and it was a mess to deal with and didn't absorb at all. Didn't seem as friendly in the compost pile as shavings either.
     
  3. Buster

    Buster Back to Work

    Quote:Yeah I don't think I even have room in the compost pit for all the straw I'm about to dump in it. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with this stuff.
     
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Straw is a mess but way cheaper than shavings... even at 8 bucks a bale...
     
  5. FarmGirl21

    FarmGirl21 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 16, 2008
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    I always wondered if straw would be better run through a chipper/shredder... It's just horrible to work with regular. shavings absorb MUCH better and are much easier to handle.
     
  6. Buster

    Buster Back to Work

    Quote:You are right about the cost but, at this point for me, shavings are something I can afford and something I'm willing to do to avoid the extra mess and work from straw.
     
  7. aiwetir

    aiwetir Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 28, 2008
    portland, or
    if you deep litter, shavings probably end up cheaper as a lot of straw gets thrown out.
     

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