Pine shavings or Straw?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by lhousesoccer, Mar 27, 2011.

  1. lhousesoccer

    lhousesoccer Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 26, 2010
    Hi - it's been a year now since I built my first coop and have had my first flock. Since the beginning, I've used pine shavings (I buy them in a bale from Agway) on the floor and in the nest boxes. However, over the winter, the pine shavings on the floor seem to mat up real bad, despite me constantly turning it over with a shovel, and adding a fresh layer to the top.

    I'm thinking of trying straw, but I was just wondering what the pros and cons of straw over pine shavings are? Thanks!
  2. Trevor P O' NEILL

    Trevor P O' NEILL Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 12, 2011
    Straw For Sure [​IMG]
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2011
  3. oldchickenlady

    oldchickenlady Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 9, 2010
    Cabot, AR
    I have used the same pine shavings since last July. I don't mix it up usually, but sometimes I will throw BOSS in and the hens do it for me. I have not had a problem with it 'matting up'. I do use hay in my nest boxes, though, I think it is softer and the hens seem to like it. Some are sorta picky, but some aren't. I have several hens that lay on top the plastic sack of shavings that sits inside my coop! Silly girls! As soon as the weather dries out/warms up I will do a complete clean out and start over with fresh shavings. I do use Stall Dry and DE occassionally, maybe 1x every 6-8 weeks.
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2011
  4. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 20, 2009
    Orange County, NY

    Straw smells and gets messy in my coop
  5. anitalogan

    anitalogan Out Of The Brooder

    What about cedar shavings rather than pine?
  6. maizey

    maizey Chillin' With My Peeps

    Can't use cedar with chickens.

    I use the best of both worlds..PINE STRAW. I can't see using anything else. It's easy to clean and it's FREE, plus I use child labor to rake it up. [​IMG]
  7. loot4louie

    loot4louie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 10, 2010
    Ringoes NJ
    Anybody use Strufex? Its a pelleted straw.
  8. Chicklette 1

    Chicklette 1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 8, 2010
    I've used the pine shavings for almost a year and I am very happy with it. I use a deep litter but do not compost it with water. I add a little DE every once in a while and turn it with a rake in addition to the chickens turning it. Underneath is a layer that has turned into almost a sand and you can lift the poop out very easily. I know I should clean it out this spring when the weather warms but it is so good now and easy to keep with no odor, that I hate to start over.Lord knows what all is in the mix now but it is great. I do however have some dust and dander. I use pine needles and leaves in the run wihich I rake up and stockpile for the winter and the muddy weather.
  9. Chicklette 1

    Chicklette 1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 8, 2010
    Quote:i clean out the poop with a litter scoop and I am afraid that I wouldn't be able to "sift"it plus would a pellet stick to and cover the poop so it doesn't get messy?
  10. jmjoffrion

    jmjoffrion Out Of The Brooder

    May 13, 2010
    Agua Dulce
    I have tried both and have found the pine shavings easier to clean then the straw...but still prefer my dirt coop floor the best. I too use a cat litter pooper scooper and the straw was just a pain in the heiny.

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