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  1. ParadiseChickens

    ParadiseChickens Songster

    Apr 19, 2011
    I need some help with the type of sand to use in our coop. It is a 12 x 12 converted horse stall. Very very nice and insulated with R30. We are in N Central Texas. I have been using just the dirt floor. It has been finished for about 3 weeks and I was so excited about it. We had 8 RIR about 3 months old now. So far 3 of them have died since putting them in their new house and one is sick and I am hand feeding it.

    I am worried that the existing dirt floor might have made them all sick with Cocci. Maybe, maybe not but I am wanting to put sand on top of the coop floor and outside run. I have no choice except what comes from a Lowes. My question is to the type of sand. I have read on here about using a sand that would be used to mix mortar. I can just see them eating that as they scratch around and it swelling inside them and killing some more. I only have 4 chickens left.

    I did see some sacks of all purpose sand at Lowes. Please offer your thoughts.

  2. Quote:I'm sure other ppl here know way more but I've read here to use builders sand.BTW NOT a mortar mix with sand.

    They will eat it but it won't swell inside them.If you think they have cocci you need to treat them.
  3. ParadiseChickens

    ParadiseChickens Songster

    Apr 19, 2011
    Thank you. They are being treated with Sulmet for cocci.

    Can you buy the builders sand at Lowes in bags?
  4. elmo

    elmo Songster

    May 23, 2009
    I buy the Sakrete All Purpose sand in bags from the Lowes in my area (Dallas). It doesn't clump when it gets wet, and that's what you want. The sand marked "all purpose" that they sell at our local Home Depot does clump when wet.

    I would suggest you buy a bag of the sand at your local Lowes, take it home and test it to make sure it's what you want. If it is, then you can go back and get more bags.
  5. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Sand can't swell. It's a small rock. Buy just sand, nothing with cement.
    Were there horses in the pen before? Perhaps there's some chemical contaminant they've picked up from the dirt.

    We had stables in MO back in the 80's that had oil sprayed to keep the dust down. Turns out the oil was tainted with dioxin and every thing in there died.
  6. ParadiseChickens

    ParadiseChickens Songster

    Apr 19, 2011
    Quote:That there is some contaminant in the dirt because there were horses there is what my neighbors are theorizing is the problem due to their repeated urinating and manure in the stall. I have neighbors on both sides of me that free range their chickens with no problems therefore the dirt is the same. We live in the country. There was never any type of chemical used in this horse stall, only a horse. And we actually brought in several wheelbarrows of yard dirt because the stall was so compacted from the horse standing. I am just thinking there is cocci in all dirt.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2011
  7. Irrintzina

    Irrintzina In the Brooder

    Aug 2, 2010
    Salt Lake City
    Good Morning, We are currently using sand in our coop and we love it.
    We bought the sand at Home Depot and some at Lowes. The trick is to buy the tubes of "play sand". It has been cleaned, does not clump, or have small dusty type particles to bother the chickens.
    It would be the same type of sand used in childrens sand boxes.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2011

  8. ParadiseChickens

    ParadiseChickens Songster

    Apr 19, 2011

    I am attempting to post my first pic, I dont know if it will or not. Anyway, we found Quikrete all purpose sand and it is a little bit courser than the Sakrete. It appears perfect and now if they dont die because they are eating it. They are 4 months old now so hopefully that's ok. Plus they are soooooo hot, it is around 99 today.
  9. Huskeriowa

    Huskeriowa Chirping

    Dec 19, 2010
    My Coop

    You said that you have no choice other than lowes for sand? If there are any rivers in your area or concrete plants then you do have other options. Find a gravel pit in the yellow pages or call your local ready mix producer and buy it from them. It will be a less expensive product and it will likely be more course and less likely to compact.

    Good luck.
  10. dbounds10

    dbounds10 Songster

    Mar 15, 2011
    Fort Worth, Tx
    I live in fort worth and have been using washed play sand bought at lowes for the floor of my coop. It clumps a little when wet but I have had no issues with it getting wet in the coop. In the run I am using sand from when we put in the new septic system (we had a ton left over). So I think that is construction sand.

    To keep the heat down, we have shade cloth over the top of the run and a fan standing on a brick on the ground under the coop (its raised 18 inches). We also installed a mister system all around the run. It causes the sand around the edges to stay damp but no muddy puddles or smell so far. The girls did not do any panting today so I guess it is helping with the heat.

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