Best bedding?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Miss Ducky, Jul 17, 2010.

  1. Miss Ducky

    Miss Ducky Chirping

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    Jun 29, 2010
    Michigan
    I am moving my ducklings to an outdoor pen/house today, and am wondering what kind of bedding is best for smell/maintenance. (We used towels while they were indoors) Thanks! [​IMG]
     

  2. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    It is a question of how much work you want. Some put a lot of straw up and clean out once in a while. I prefer rubber mats (the roll out kind found at home depot in the carpet isle) covered with pine shavings. I sweep up the shavings each morning and sprinkle new ones over the mats each evening. I have to say my duck house does not smell bad, with the exception in the morning after 13 ducks pooed up 10x10 feet. That's also when the flies show up, right after I open the doors and let the ducks out. So I clean up right then and when I'm done the flies are gone. I use the poo infested shavings everywhere in the garden. Under shrubs, in flower beds, you name it. The poo washes into the soil fast and the shavings make a good mulch.
     
  3. Miss Ducky

    Miss Ducky Chirping

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    Jun 29, 2010
    Michigan
    Thanks Katharina! What is the purpose of the rubber mats?
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2010
  4. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    They prevent the poo from sticking and make clean up a breeze. I have concrete pavers below. and they are a little bit hard on their feet. They are textured which prevent slippage too. These rubber rolls are made as carpet protectors and they are really cheap. I can easily pull them out and rinse outside with a hose. I really love the mats. Here are some pictures of my setup:
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    Excuse any mess you see, they are simply ducks and do what comes naturally to them.
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    Feeding and water setup pictures, with cleaning station outside.
     
  5. Miss Ducky

    Miss Ducky Chirping

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    Jun 29, 2010
    Michigan
    Thanks Katherina! Sorry for getting your name wrong in the earlier post! The mats are a fantastic idea! I will be looking into those! [​IMG]
     
  6. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

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    Chicago, IL
    I personally LOVE pellets for bedding. I use a horse stall pellet "Equine Pine" or something similar. It breaks down to saw dust when it gets wet and is very absorbent. I love it since I don't have to completely shovel out as often. I usually can scrap a top layer off, before needing to completely shovel out.

    I also use a product called "Sweet PDZ" with my bedding. It's a powder that absorbs, and helps keeps flies away. It's pretty much the same as Stall Dry, and similar to DE (Can't seem to find DE anywhere around us here in IL). It works very very very well and we love it!
     
  7. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    I saw a post from someone who tried the Stall Dry in this forum not to long ago. The feet of his duck started to crack from the Dry Stall. They were young ducks, so I would worry about its use. I was going to try it too, but I'm doing so good with the pine shavings that I stick with it. Plus I have so much land that I will never run out of a spot disposing the shavings.
     

  8. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Songster

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    I use a deep layer of wood shavings, about 5 or 6 inches deep. Every couple weeks I sprinkle the bedding with DE and I toss the shavings around with a shovel everyday to keep the poo buried. It works really well as long as I keep up with it, the coop very rarely smells bad.
     
  9. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

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    Southern New England
    I use a combination of pine shavings, pelleted sawdust, and peat moss. I have about five or six inches of bedding down now. It has built up over several weeks. My maintenance routine is to lightly rake fresh droppings off the top of the bedding in the morning (it goes into the garden or compost), stir all the bedding to get air into it, and sprinkle fresh shavings on top. I use straw in the nest boxes, which I change out when it begins to get moist.

    In the veranda, where the water dishes are, I use pelleted sawdust mostly. I have sand over hardware cloth. I lay down a layer of pellets, and when that seems damp through, lay down another layer. Then once a week (or two, depending on weather), I rake out the dirty sawdust and spread it over the garden or put it into a compost pile.

    One advantage of keeping some deep litter is that you can let it build up a little more in the late autumn, and if it works well, there is a bit of composting action in the bedding, which produces some heat and helps keep the ducks warmer in winter (as well as being insulation on the floor).

    I like the DE idea. Need to try that out. Noticeable difference?
     

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