I have sand in my outside run of my hen house and I can say that I am not impressed. The sand did well in the summer, but in the fall/winter it got messy. To start, leaves and all other junk fall in and get crushed into it, making it appear pretty gross. Secondly, unless you are out with your chickens all day (something that everybody with a day job cannot do), the poo will break down into the sand and cause a terrible odor. I for one can say that at first sand looks awesome, but after a few months, YUCK. I mean really, I was shoveling some out a couple of weeks ago to add a new layer, and it was disgusting! I mean it was all different colors, slushy, and incredibly heavy. Unless you are prepared to constantly bury mess by buying more sand, then this is a pretty unattractive method. I can't really describe my level of disappointment here. I build my coop around this time last year, and I was new to it, so I took a ton of the advice on sand here on BYC. I made a bunch of small errors in my coop (making the roof too low, small door, too much materials, but of all those things, sand was the absolute worst!! I will be changing to either dirt or wood chips over the winter, as I cannot bear the sight of this sand in my yard any longer! Moral of the story - Sand looks nice for a couple of months. After that, it looks ugly. It smells, needs constant maintenance, and is costly when it comes to constantly adding new sand. I am not very exciting to move this. A small 5 x 5 run with a 8 inch sand floor is a lot of weight, and I am treating the stuff as borderline toxic since it is thoroughly mixed with chicken poo. Do not be fooled. Sand is no kitty litter. If you are contemplating sand, take a few things into account. Cost, aesthetics, and health. The thought of my chickens sand bathing in this muck any longer doesn't fly with me. Can't wait to get rid of this stuff! Again, this is just an opinion! If anybody disagrees, then feel free to! But I just want to say that there is a ton of hullabaloo over sand, and it does not remotely live up to these standards. So think again on sand...that is all I have to say!