No More Straw

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by MysticalMom, Jun 1, 2010.

  1. MysticalMom

    MysticalMom Songster

    Jul 1, 2009
    My DH has decided to take all the straw out of the duck pens and just leave them with a dirt floor and straw in their nest boxes. I disagree with this move, but he's adamant. Our ducks free range in the daytime and are only in their pen at night. What do y'all think about him doing away with the straw? Good or bad?
  2. pirtykitty

    pirtykitty Songster

    Dec 8, 2008
    Waco, Texas
    I have mine in a raised pen with hardware cloth on all 4 sides and a roof... Mine have straw in the nest areas but not on the hardware cloth.. Mine also free range during the day..

    How many ducks do you have???? You might have to stir the dirt up evey so often to cover the poo and also get some stall dry to spread on it evey so often .
  3. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    Perhaps you should think about getting pine wood shavings you can slightly sprinkle on the floor. They will absorb the poo and you can just sweep it out. I use wood shaving/poo mix under my shrubs as mulch and it fertilizes as it decomposes. I would use something on the dirt floor so you can avoid a nasty breeding ground for possible illnesses. I have concrete pavers covered with rubber runners from the hardware store (carpet isle). They are textured so the ducks cannot slip. They are also easy to sweep and you can hose them down if needed.
  4. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

    Nov 20, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Straw can hold bacteria and poop (like a straw lol), so doing away with most of your straw might actually be better for your ducks. You may want to consider putting down something else to help combat smells and poopiness.... Like Stall dry, Sweet PDZ, etc.... Or if you want to try a bit of different bedding, you can try pellets meant for Horse stalls. I swear by them....
  5. adoptedbyachicken

    adoptedbyachicken Crowing Premium Member

    Depending on the size of the pen and the number of duck you could be just fine. Dolimite lime is safe to use when the birds are in the pen and will keep the smell down as well as correct the soil pH so that it's not such a good bacteria host. Many till their pens to mix the dirt/poop up or scrape them to remove the top layer and then redress with new dirt. Use a spreader to put lime on top on a rainy day so it waters in, or water it in if you have to in a dry spell.
  6. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    Whats going to absorb all the poop? YOu cant just leave them to lay in their poop....
    unless your going to scrape out the poop daily off of the dirt floor? [​IMG]
    I use shavings in my duck house...
  7. Wifezilla

    Wifezilla Positively Ducky

    Oct 2, 2008
    I use the poopy straw in my garden. If I gave up straw for the ducks I would have to buy stuff for my growing beds.
  8. chickboss

    chickboss Songster

    Mar 23, 2010
    Quote:I use these and love them. In my duck house, I put down a layer of pellets topped by a very thin layer of low quality (not moldy) hay because straw is expensive here. The hay acts like a mat and catches the majority of poo, and the shaving absorb moisture and odors. I take out the yuck hay every day, give the pellets a stir, through another thin layer of hay, and call it good. Whole thing takes less than five minutes and the pellets last for a long time. I've used them without the hay before, and they are great because as they break down they turn into a fine saw dust that can be picked through. The sand I have in my chicken coop is still my favorite floor material because it is just the absolute most easy thing to pick through. I go through with a kitty litter scoop every morning, takes very little time and the coop never smells. So that could be another option.

    I just wanted to add that I think hay works much better than straw if it were to be used this way because it really mats up. Straw would be too coarse if you wanted to be able to roll it up and pitch it. Would work if you just wanted to rake it, I don't know how much poo would fall off of it though. You could rake the hay to...of course. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  9. toletiquesbysam

    toletiquesbysam Songster

    Sep 19, 2008
    I have a wood floor too, and I use wood chips. I would not leave it with nothing down, I use hay in the nest boxes.
  10. Bryanccfshr

    Bryanccfshr In the Brooder

    Mar 29, 2010
    Farmington , NM
    I live in a very arid area and have a wood floor in the duck house. I use Alfalfa Hay about 2-4" thick. Every other day I stir it and After a week or two I clean it out onto the compost pile and add fresh Hay/alfalfa. The alfalfa breaks down almost into a fine meal mixes well with the droppings that completely dry during the day when the ducks are out.

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