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Nesting material question

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by lisamr, Aug 24, 2008.

  1. lisamr

    lisamr In the Brooder

    Aug 24, 2008
    Kelso, WA
    We are just about to get our very first laying chickens tomorrow. 6 of them. We have the coop, the run , the feed, feeders etc. but my question is about the material inside the coop. I have read that some use hay, some use pine shaving and I have also heard of shredded paper. Is the shredded paper a safe way to go? I want to be safe but the idea of recycling the paper from my home sounds good. and more economical. Any advice is appreciated. [​IMG]
  2. Shared Acres

    Shared Acres Songster

    Aug 10, 2008
    Northeast Fla
    I'm using straw. I would think it would hold up longer since you are using it outside and it could get wet.
  3. lisamr

    lisamr In the Brooder

    Aug 24, 2008
    Kelso, WA
    I am actually talking about the material that goes inside the coop building.
  4. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    The shredded paper will stick to their feet after it gets poo on it and make a mess. Straw tends to get moldy when it's compacted down. Better off with pine shavings (no cedar!). Do a search here on BYC on the deep litter method. It will help you cut down on the overall cost of the pine shavings.
  5. Marlinchaser

    Marlinchaser Songster

    Oct 18, 2007
    The problem with shreaded paper is that it isnt very absorbant, and it doesnt break down, so after a couple of days you have clumps of shreaded paper held together with chickenpoo, sorta like paper mache. tried it didnt like it went back to woodshavings the next week. [​IMG]
  6. spatcher

    spatcher Songster

    Apr 13, 2008
    Virginia - Southside
    Pine shavings are the way to go!
  7. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm 10 Years

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    I use pine shavings and I sprinkle FOOD GRADE Diatomaceous Earth (DE) on the shavings. Also my roosts in my coop are over wire which allows the poop through and I sprinkle the DE over the poop too. The pine shavings are on the floor in the rest of the coop. Monthly I add some shavings until I have approx 4/6in, and weekly I add more DE. I clean my coop once a year. Once in awhile I throw some scratch on the shavings and let the chickens mix it up. They do a very good job. I have no problems with flies, stink and such. My pine shavings stay nice and dry easy to clean out. I put them in my compost pile. which every once in awhile I give a toss to keep it mixed up with the other stuff that goes in. sprinkle with water and let it cook. I move my coop and chicken yard about every 3 months approx, clean up the poop under the roost and it goes into the compost. I grow so much produce that I give most of it away. My soil is low in acid so I think the pine shavings are good for my soil. I usually buy the pine shavings at my local feed store. They were out before, so I have bought some in the pet department at Wal-Mart.
  8. Sandrachx

    Sandrachx Songster

    Oct 16, 2007
    Chelsea, MI
    i found shavings better than straw as well, even in the nesting boxes. it's easier to scoop out their poop from the shavings and easier to mix up/fluff up. the chickens love scratching through the straw in the winter, sort of like indoor activities for kids, so it's shavings and a flake or two of straw in winter for entertainment. also, i picked up my shavings from a feed store - they are long skinny bags with bedding marketed for horses. i found the tractor supply store cubes of shavings too cumbersome to manage, especially if i wanted to use only 1/2 a bag. the DE really helps.
  9. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm 10 Years

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    Quote:I don't put straw out for them, but I do get alfalfa bales and break the bales up for the birds to pick and scratch through. They eat the green and before you know it it is just stick type pieces left.
  10. vfem

    vfem Yoga...The Chicken Pose

    Aug 4, 2008
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    Hmm... I tried several things, and the chickens decided they preferred the straw and now all run around with it in their beak putting some here and there. They like home decorating can you tell?! [​IMG]

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