How many of you use hay for your coops?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by NYRIR, May 14, 2011.

  1. NYRIR

    NYRIR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 13, 2010
    Petersburg,NY
    I'm picking brains once again. I have been using wood chips since I got chickens last year but it seems to be more expensive and messy to clean.Do any of you use hay?I found a local farmer who sells hay for 3.00 a bale.The wood chips are costing me 4.59 a bag.My concern is that if I use hay it won't absorb as much moisture as the wood chips do(supposedly). I had a few roos with frostbite last winter and I don't want to make the moisture level in there in the winter worse.Any suggestions?
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    I use both, depending where I'm shopping and whether I need some hay for nests (they kick pine shavings out of nests even with a board in front.) I do think hay holds moisture more, and it certainly doesn't help control summer odors as well as pine shavings. They say bugs can live inside hay but i just haven't had a problem with lice/mites, knock on wood. And hay is much better in the compost bin, and much less dusty. I don't think there is such a thing as perfect litter.
     
  3. jennh

    jennh Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 21, 2007
    Lititz
    I use hay.

    #1, I [​IMG] the smell. #2, the girls love kicking around and looking for seeds. Plus, if there are bugs, so what? They eat those, too!

    I put the hay/droppings on the compost pile. If it smells more in the summer, that means you need to clean out the coop more often. JMHO
     
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Last autumn for the very first time I used the pelleted white pine bedding used for horses in my pigeon lofts. (Approximately 3-4" deep.) Just finished cleaning 3 of my 5 lofts and everything was bone dry. Actually, it was so clean that I only removed the top couple of inches. This might also work as bedding for chickens. Upon the occassions that I used hay for chicken bedding, I had a molding problem.
     
  5. zoo357

    zoo357 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have been using hay but just put some pine shavings in the coops. I also do guinea pig rescue so shavings and hay are always around. I've seen lots of people use shavings and I'm sure that will work better to take care of moisture. I have put hay in some of our laying boxes only to have the girls kick it out...
     
  6. angelbabyamy

    angelbabyamy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use hay. They also like to scratch around and eat it.
     
  7. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I use straw, which is not hay, but I really, really love it. I also prefer that straw heads to my gardens instead of all the chips, which I use in a pinch. Not opposed to chips, but much prefer the straw.
     
  8. hennyannie

    hennyannie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2011
    North Carolina
    Quote:I use a product called Equine Pine and I love it, I have used it in runs even to dry up some of the mud. Nothing beats it to dry up the hole in a horse stall.I use it under other bedding to keep it dryer.
     
  9. Aria

    Aria Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We us hay. We have a pooper scooper we used daily. We add new hay from time to time.
    It is grand to use for mulch later. It works fine.

    Our chickens are fenched in and we have an automatic door. They are out most of the day.
    The Coop stays clean. In Winter we have a run for their use. And do the same to keep clean.

    And we have a neighbor friend that sells his hay to us for $1.50 a bale. Works out fine.
     
  10. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Quote:I use a product called Equine Pine and I love it, I have used it in runs even to dry up some of the mud. Nothing beats it to dry up the hole in a horse stall.I use it under other bedding to keep it dryer.

    I believe that is the same product that I used. I got mine at TSC. It will be my bedding of choice from here on.
     

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