Best material for nests, flooring, & runs

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by shadowfox, Oct 22, 2016.

  1. shadowfox

    shadowfox Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2016
    New Mexico
    I'm planning to get about six or so Welsh Harlequins in the spring. They will be my first go at raising poultry. What materials are good for nests? Do I even need to provide nesting boxes, I've read that most ducks won't use them? What materials are best for flooring? How about out in the run?

    I've thought about doing some pea gravel as the main flooring material and in the run where the kiddie pool, food, and water are. I'm hoping that this will minimize mess. I do live in New Mexico, so it's hot over the summer and excess water mess should dry up fairly quickly. I really don't want to end up with their house getting nasty and wet, but I also want to give them something soft for their bed.

    Your advise would be greatly appreciated. Feel free to point me in the right direction if my questions have been addressed in another thread
  2. dotknott

    dotknott Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 11, 2016
    Rhode Island
    My Coop
    I use straw in the coop and they seem to use the nesting boxes fine. I've used pea gravel in the run, but switched to straw mid summer. I like it quite a bit more since I'll just let it decompose and shovel it out in the spring. My ducks free range though and spend little time in the run to make it a mess.
  3. lomine

    lomine Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 7, 2015
    Peyton, CO
    I've got pea gravel around the buried stock tank. The rest of the run is deep litter with mostly pine shavings. I add grass clippings and leaves seasonally. The coop is pine shavings with straw added in colder weather. I don't offer food or water in the coop.

    I didn't have a nest box before but added one for the chickens I got this spring. The ducks used to lay everywhere but now mostly use the nest boxes. I have straw in the boxes.

    Mine also free range the majority of the day so it's very little clean-up around the pond. The chickens turn the deep litter for me. All I do is clean out the coop every week or two. I just dump it all into the run and add new shavings.

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