What is better for bedding?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Tlammy, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. Tlammy

    Tlammy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 18, 2011
    London, OH
    Pine shavings...
    or straw
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I use deep pine shavings (1 foot or more) with a few inches of straw on top, which I change out more often. I just stir the pine shavings. They last for months. Sometimes I mix a little peat moss in the pine shavings. Seems to keep it fresh and earthy smelling.
  3. flocksalot

    flocksalot Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2011
    Poynette WI
    I'm kinda curious about this myself. We've been using old hay left over from last year, but I seem to need to change it out daily, and I would prefer to keep that for the chickens nests. My ducks and geese are in one coop and roam where ever they please during the day. We have a small farm. I just built them a new coop as they needed better shelter for over the winter. The floor of the coop is a plastic mesh supported by 2x4's and those are up on 4x4 skids. This gives me some room to rinse out the coop as needed, but I was wondering about possibly using shavings. I use them for my chickens but don't do the deep litter method as I prefer to replace the 2 to 3 bags per coop every couple of weeks over the winter and once a month over the summer. When it doesn't smell like pine it goes to the garden. The ducks and geese are in the garden though, so maybe all I would have to do is move them once on a while as the shavings get knocked through.
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Loving this country life Premium Member

    Pine shaving, I use about 12" also and just remove the nasties off the top and stir the rest. works great. I use the flake not fine.
  5. triplepurpose

    triplepurpose Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 13, 2008
    I'm very new to this, but I'm using leaves and leaf litter and other carbonaceous greenwaste (shrubbery trimmings etc.) from my property and sometimes a bit of sawdust (from untreated wood, of course) or straw mixed in. I stir it with a rake as needed, and clean it out when it gets too stinky. Unfortunately most of my pen is exposed to the rain, so it's not as maintenance-free as the deep litter in my chicken coop, but so far it's been manageable. The stink-factor is my main guide--if it starts to stink I add more leaves, and/or stir--I never let it get nasty smelling. I just mucked out about a cubic yard from my pen after a few days of heavy rain, and built a beautiful compost pile with it all--talk about black gold. So in short, I'm a big fan of using whatever can be obtained most readily/cheaply. Hope this helps...
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2011
  6. Rosecomb-Ryan

    Rosecomb-Ryan East Indie Crazed

    Apr 12, 2008
    Sacramento CA
    I use rice hulls as well as Shavings and Straw...
  7. Tlammy

    Tlammy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 18, 2011
    London, OH
    Oh.. ok.. ive heard both good and bad with both straw and sheddings.
  8. m.kitchengirl

    m.kitchengirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 4, 2011
    I have struggled with this all along. I switched from shavings to hay (found out I am EXTREMELY allergic to hay [​IMG]) switched to the chunkier pine shavings. I have switched back to hay again.

    I think it is really personal.
    I can only speak for myself, but those pine shavings drive me BONKERS [​IMG]. They get everywhere. No matter what I do.
    Not copious amounts mind, but there are STRAYS, stragglers. No matter how careful I am.
    It makes me want to sit there, right next to the Quack Shack, and pick them up from around the door. [​IMG].

    So, I may get hives and itchy eyes, and have some trouble breathing when I handle hay, but I prefer it to those darn shavings.

    I can rake the icky parts out each day & right into the garden, or compost, after some "airing out" time.
    It doesn't leave a trail, or a flake. It goes where it belongs.

    Like I said, I think it is a matter of personal preference. I acknowledge that my "logic" is flawed on this subject.
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2011
  9. michelle89

    michelle89 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2011
    I've been using pine shavings and have had no issues at all, I did use straw once and quickly realized that it just plain stinks! It was just gross, thats just my experience, reading here it works well for others. Use what works for you!! I also sprinkle DE in with the bedding and have had no problem with stink and flies! Good luck![​IMG][​IMG]
  10. HollyBird24

    HollyBird24 Overrun With Chickens

    Nov 10, 2011
    Manitoba, Canada
    I use straw, its cheaper and since the ducks are very messy, I go through a lot of it.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by