Builder's sand?

Discussion in 'Quail' started by nikirushka, Dec 10, 2016.

  1. nikirushka

    nikirushka Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 2, 2014
    I've seen a few people mention this as a substrate and I've been considering it.

    Presently, my quails (37 coturnix, 6 buttons) are all indoors and require an absurd amount of cleaning out, resulting in at least 6 black bags of woodshavings a week to be disposed of (they have to be cleaned out twice a week). That's too much for my wheelie bin, and the council only allows one black bag per week at the tip. And they check! Too much for me to compost too, so although I'm going to get an incinerator bin, I'm looking at alternatives. Even with the incinerator, I'd like to lower the cost as well.

    I like the idea of just scooping the poop from the sand and topping up as needed, but does it work that well? Is there not an issue of poop getting stuck to feet with a non-absorbent substrate and a lot of birds?
  2. cshma11

    cshma11 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 2, 2016
    What about deep litter so you aren't cleaning it out so frequently and it isn't building up so much trash?
  3. DK newbie

    DK newbie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2015
    I have buttons on sand, and yes, it's pretty easy to clean, but also yes - if the cage is too crowded they do get poop stuck to their feet. And too crowded seems to be around 'less than 2 square feet per button', so with you having 37 coturnix and them being around 5 times the mass of a button - and making more wet poops, as far as I know - I suspect you'd need very much room to make it work. But you could always give it a try in one cage and see if it works..
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2016
  4. nikirushka

    nikirushka Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 2, 2014
    Thanks, that's what I was thinking. Right now they'd be way too concentrated to try it then! They certainly are a heck of a lot messier than the buttons.

    I do have fairly deep bedding - my smaller group (13) are in a 6x2 pen at present with 2" deep substrate, but it just gets compacted so quickly and absolutely filthy. I've just cleaned it out after 6 days (bad back stopped me doing it sooner this week) and it was absolutely ripe with ammonia. I've just switched to different woodhsavings today though, much lighter and fluffier and much smaller too, so I'll see how those go. I need to get some drip trays under the bottles too, those aren't helping!

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