shavings vs straw

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Dan Sutton, Feb 28, 2015.

  1. Dan Sutton

    Dan Sutton Hatching

    Apr 25, 2014
    I am hatching out some ducklings this month and they will hatch in a week. Last time i had ducklings i used straw and hay and it seemed that maggots grew overnight and i had to change the straw daily. My question is do shavings absorb water better than straw or should i stick to straw.[​IMG]
    Please pass on your wisdom[​IMG]
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I would go with shavings, but watch them. Some ducklings - including mine - will eat shavings and get impacted. I used old towels. You could try old towels over shavings to make the shavings last longer.

    Hay has quite a bit of nutrient in it, and straw can trip them up. Everyone has different experiences, I know.
  3. xchickenlovex

    xchickenlovex Hatching

    Feb 28, 2015
    I use miscanthes shavings for mine, I would easily recommend it!!!!!!!!!
  4. Dan Sutton

    Dan Sutton Hatching

    Apr 25, 2014
    I read that shavings only had to be changed one or twice a week. Is that true?
    Where can you get Miscanthus shavings at?
    Are pine shavings okay to use or do they upset the Ducklings?
  5. PotatoWaffles

    PotatoWaffles Songster

    Oct 10, 2014
    Northwest Ohio

    When the ducklings are really young, once or twice a week would work, but as they get bigger and make more mess, you might need to increase that frequency. I feel like I change my 3wk olds' bedding every other day, lol. I use pine shavings and they work just fine, but the first couple days, when the duckies were trying to figure out what was food and what wasn't, I put old towels over the shavings to keep the ducklings from eating them.

  6. I used pine shavings with mine but that only lasted a couple of days. I had 18 Cayugas in the brooder. I finally settled on old towels. They could get messed up, removed and replaced, shaken out and laundered and be ready for the next go around. It will depend on how many ducklings you get. Just a few obviously make a lot less mess than 15 or 20.
  7. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    With fifteen ducklings, and not very good water management at first, I was changing bedding three times a day. If you get the water management down to a science, I expect you would still be replacing bedding once a day, at least spot-picking once or twice a day.
  8. WVduckchick

    WVduckchick For The Birds!

    Feb 9, 2015
    West Virginia
    My Coop
    I bought medium pine shavings for mine, as I think I read cedar was a definite No-No (poisonous?) and small pine shavings were more likely to be eaten.
    Someone feel free to correct me if I'm mistaken!!
  9. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Crowing

    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    Cedar it's the fumes, that said some argue they have used them and had no troubles.. me? i stick with normal everyday hardwood shavings, i just buy them at the feed mill... Straw? ick.. sorry hate the stuff for birds, i am VERY familiar with straw before one thinks i lack experience, my sheep are bedded on it.. but with birds? mold is a massive concern and it harbors pests.

    As for brooders? yeah, you'll feel like all you do is clean it lol.. towels can work for the first few days while they are sorta slow and sleepy, soon they wreak the place and go on massive bursts of energy.

    Best brooder i have found for ducks, a kiddie pool! loved that... used it for pekins... so much easier to keep clean, ducks grow so very fast and have such high water needs you'll be counting the days til they can get into a coop/building etc.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2015
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: