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Chicken poultry litter

February 16, 2023 // 9 minutes read

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Best Wood For Chicken - Bugoutbill.com

This high-quality bedding guarantees comfort for your chickens, unbroken eggs, and no fowl smell (pun intended) in your coop!

When it comes to building a healthy environment for your chickens, getting good bedding for your coop isn’t something you can overlook. Bedding seems like a simple thing, but a good choice will do wonders for your chickens’ health. 

And while we all love our feathered friends, we have to admit that they can be quite messy too. Dealing with the chickens’ droppings and other not-so-pleasant things is part of the joys of being a chicken keeper. 

But did you know… 

…that the right bedding can help reduce your workload and even eliminate the odor inside the coop? 

Yes, that’s right— you definitely can keep your coop clean and odor-free from here on!

And those are just some of the many benefits of getting high-quality bedding for your chicken coop! 

By now, you probably have a lot of questions…

Don’t worry; we’ll answer them all. 

In this guide, you’re going to read about: 

  • Our picks for the best chicken coop beddings on the market today; 
  • The pros and cons of each product; 
  • Types of bedding materials that you can choose from to suit your needs; 
  • Answers to your most frequently asked chicken coop bedding questions; 
  • And much more… 

If all this sounds interesting to you, then let’s jump right in!

INTRODUCTION 

Best Chicken Coop Bedding - Bugoutbill.com
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Aside from providing comfort for your chickens, bedding also offers a soft landing for them when they jump from their roosts, a nest for hens to lay their eggs on so that they won’t break, and it protects your chickens from the elements, as well. Some bedding has insulating properties, as well, so your chickens can keep warm come winter.  

And it can be fun! 

For example, sand bedding gives your chicken the opportunity to take dust baths, which they love. And your chickens can play around with straw bedding, which provides them the mental stimulation they need.

In short, good coop bedding is necessary to keep our chickens comfortable, healthy, and happy— definitely not just a luxury. 

With all those things in mind…

We’ve tested out a wide variety of bedding types from different brands to find out which ones are the best. We then narrowed it down to ten products, which you will see in the list below.

Continue reading to see which chicken coop bedding options are in store for you!

SECTION 2: Best Chicken Coop Beddings

Best Soft Chicken Coop Bedding- Editor’s Choice Award

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Precision Pet by Petmate Excelsior Nesting Pads Chicken Bedding

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Value for Money
100
Absorbency
100
Durability
90
Easy to Clean
100
Odor Control
100
Material – Wood shavings, paper
No Of Pack – 1
Size – 13 x 13 inches
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – Petmate Excelsior

Overall Score:

98

The Bottom Line:

The Precision Pet by Petmate Excelsior Nesting Pads Chicken Bedding provides a comfortable and cozy nest for your hens, while also serving as a dry surface for laying eggs.

Pros

  • Soft and durable 
  • Absorbs moisture 
  • Excellent cushioning 
  • Very flexible
  • Prevents eggs breakage 
  • Holds shape well 
  • Made from 100% biodegradable materials
  • Doesn’t collect dust 
  • Easy to clean
  • Doesn’t retain any foul smell
  • Compatible with Petmate Nesting boxes and most standard-sized nesting boxes 
  • Contains 10 nesting pads

Cons

  • Quite pricey
  • Doesn’t hold their shape that well once they get wet

Summary

We love raising chickens as much as the next chicken keeper, but we have to say it’s not always fun and games and can be very messy. That’s why we’re thankful that we discovered the Precision Pet by Petmate Excelsior Nesting Pads Chicken Bedding

For years, we’ve been using coarse sand for our nesting boxes, and we had to deal with our hens always kicking them out. We’ve had a lot of broken eggs, too, as there wasn’t enough cushioning. These nesting pads solved all those problems for us. 

These nesting pads are made up of durable bedding material with a heavy-duty brown paper backing that keeps the bedding in shape while absorbing moisture, providing a dry surface for the chicken eggs. They looked quite thin when we got them, but after fluffing them out a bit, we saw how thick they actually are.

Our hens were wary of them at first, as they were unfamiliar to them. But these are so soft while still being sturdy, and our chickens ended up loving them. These are flexible, so your hens can easily modify their nest to their liking, and the pads will still hold their shape. 

Moreover…

The cushioning is great, and they totally protect our fresh eggs from breaking. Another great thing about these pads is that they’re made from 100% biodegradable materials and thus are compostable. Talk about sustainable farming!

Measuring 13 x 13 inches, these pads are compatible with any standard-sized nesting boxes, so we had no problem fitting them in our many nesting boxes from different brands. 

These nesting pads are very easy to clean, as well. If our chickens dirtied them up, all we have to do is give them a good shake, put them back in the boxes as if nothing happened, and they’re good to go! 

We were surprised at how long these lasted; it took about three months before we saw the need to replace them. Considering the convenience they provide us and the comfort they give to our chickens, these pads are absolutely deserving of being our Editor’s Choice.

Now here’s the catch… 

These cost quite a lot, which is why we were hesitant to buy them at first. But since we’ve started using them, we never had to deal with any damp mess or broken eggs again, and we think they’re very much worth the price just for that. They also last for quite a long time, so there’s no need for us to keep buying every month or so. 

Just be careful, though – we found that they don’t hold their shape quite as well once they get wet.

Best Budget Chicken Coop Bedding – Best Value Award

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Manna Pro Fresh Flakes | Chicken Coop Bedding

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Value for Money
100
Absorbency
100
Durability90
Easy to Clean
90
Odor Control
90
Material – Pine Shavings
No Of Pack – 1
Size – 12 x 14.75 x 4 inches; 3.5 cubic feet
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – Manna Pro

Overall Score:

94

The Bottom Line:

Budget-friendly and economical, the Manna Pro Fresh Flakes Chicken Coop Bedding offers fresh and clean bedding for your chickens.

Pros

  • Great value for money  
  • Ultra-absorbent 
  • Made from all-natural pine shavings 
  • Low in moisture and dust
  • Compostable 
  • Screened to remove dust  
  • Helps to prevent bugs and growth
  • Staves off odors in the coop 
  • Easy to pour
  • Eco-friendly

Cons

  • We don’t recommend it for young chicks or other small animals (some flakes are a little large) 
  • A bit coarse

Summary

We love using pine shavings as chicken coop bedding, but they can be pretty expensive. One of the most affordable ones we’ve tried, though, is the Manna Pro Fresh Flakes Chicken Coop Bedding.   

Considering the price, it definitely felt more expensive than it really is.  

This product came packed in plastic, which helped keep the shavings dry. It’s so compressed that it feels like breaking apart a brick. 

These flakes are made from all-natural pine shavings that are 100% compostable. It’s highly absorbent and has a nice smell that keeps our coop free from odor.

Because it has been screened carefully for dust, you can be assured that it’s safe to use and won’t affect your chickens’ fragile respiratory system. It’s very clean, and we noticed that it hinders all types of growth and bugs. 

And a little goes a long way with this product! We’ve been using it for a month now, and we’re barely halfway through the bag— it’s very cost-effective, making it our Best Value awardee.  

However… 

Some of the flakes are a little larger than we were expecting. It’s not a big deal for us, but we thought we’d mention it. For this reason, we don’t recommend this product for baby chicks. 

Best Absorbent Chicken Coop Bedding – Top Pick Award

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Cackle Hatchery Laying Hen Nest Box Pads

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Value for Money
100
Absorbency
100
Durability
80
Easy to Clean
90
Odor Control
90
Material – Wood shavings
No Of Pack – 2
Size – 39.75 x 22.91 x 16.69 inches/4 cubic feet
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – Small Pet Select

Overall Score:

92

The Bottom Line:

The Cackle Hatchery Laying Hen Nest Box Pads Bedding is a great option for chicken keepers who need highly absorbent bedding that’s all-natural and smells great.

Pros

  • Excellent absorption 
  • Good odor control 
  • Very versatile
  • All-natural and no additives 
  • Pleasant woodsy smell
  • Dries quickly
  • Doesn’t turn mushy 
  • Easy to spot-clean
  • Reasonable price

Cons

  • Has a small amount of dust 
  • The smell can be a bit overwhelming at first

Summary

If high absorbency is your top requirement for chicken coop bedding, then you’ll love the Cackle Hatchery Laying Hen Nest Box Pads

This bedding is made from all-natural materials with no additives and no harmful stuff that can be breathed in. It’s perfect for animals with delicate respiratory systems, such as, well, chickens— aside from being chemical-free, it also doesn’t have a strong smell. 

In fact… 

It smells so nice! We absolutely love the natural, fresh woodsy scent it gives off, and our chickens seem to love it too. As soon as we lay the bedding on the coop floor, they go straight to it and get cozy. There are some bigger chunks here and there, which our chickens love to chew.

Since getting this, we don’t have to clean the coop as much. This bedding absorbs moisture so well, and even when water accidentally spills on it, we just have to wipe it with a paper towel then it will dry quickly. 

We also don’t have to deal with stains on the floor anymore; we can just take a dustpan, scoop up any dirt, and refill the area. Spot-cleaning is a breeze, as the dirty parts can be seen easily. The shavings are not so small that they’re hard to sweep up.

This bedding is great at controlling odors and leaves our chickens smelling good, too, while providing insulation. 

And you’ll get a lot for a very reasonable price! It includes two 113L big blocks of Aspen beddings, each very compressed and has the ability to expand to 8 cubic feet. These last us a long time, and we don’t have to run to our local feed store every other week.  

We have a minor complaint, though… 

The bedding has a bit of dust. However, it’s only a small amount, and nothing a good shake can’t fix.

Best Healthy Chicken Coop Bedding

MagJo Pet Excelsior Aspen Shaving Nesting Liners

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Value for Money
80
Absorbency
80
Durability
90
Easy to Clean
100
Odor Control
90
Material – Aspen shavings
No Of Pack – 12
Size – 13 x 13 inches
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – MagJo

Overall Score:

88

The Bottom Line:

The MagJo Excelsior Aspen Shaving Nesting Liners offers a healthy nesting area for your chickens to lay eggs on.

Pros

  • Well-made 
  • Provides a healthy environment for chickens
  • Thick and large
  • Doesn’t tear up easily from chicken scratches  
  • Has paper backing that catches any droppings 
  • Pleasant texture and smell 
  • Easy to scoop out 
  • Makes our nesting boxes look great

Cons

  • The backing could be a bit more supportive
  • Not the softest

Summary

The MagJo Excelsior Aspen Shaving Nesting Liners is a fantastic healthy option for your chickens. 

These liners are created from high-quality USA-grown aspen shavings, which are glued on top of Kraft paper. The paper backing holds the shavings together while working to catch any droppings and trap them, so it’s easier to clean your coop floor.  

Indeed… 

Cleaning the coop has been a walk in the park with these liners; we like how we can just shake off the droppings or cut out any dirty parts, and they’re clean again. Because they are glued to a bottom paper, it’s easy to just pull them out of the box and throw them away. They also stay dry and don’t get mildewed easily compared to other types of beddings. 

These liners have a nice texture and smell that make our chickens gravitate toward them. In fact, we made some lovely nest boxes for them, and it’s only when we put these liners on the boxes that they started laying eggs on them!

The eggs always come out of the boxes unbroken, thanks to these liners protecting them from hitting hard wood. Unlike other liners we’ve tried in the past, these are thick and large.

We’ve been using these pads for about five months now, and they’re still holding up well. Our chickens can easily move them, fluff them up, and even scratch them without damaging them, as they’re so durable! 

That said…

These liners are a bit too big for some of our nest boxes, but the good thing about these is that we can just roll up the excess to form something like a nesting bowl, which gives our girls a cozy experience. Sometimes, they do get kicked out of the box too, but it’s very easy to get them back into shape and return them to the boxes. 

The backing could be a bit more supportive, though, but so far, we haven’t really had any issues with it disintegrating or anything like that, so far.

Best Thick Padded Chicken Coop Bedding

Cackle Hatchery Laying Hen Nest Box Pads

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Value for Money
80
Absorbency
90
Durability
90
Easy to Clean
100
Odor Control
80
Material – Excelsior, Kraft paper
No Of Pack – 6
Size – 13 x 13 inches
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – Cackle Hatchery

Overall Score:

88

The Bottom Line:

The Cackle Hatchery Laying Hen Nest Box Pads are very thick and soft, providing a great cushion for your chickens and their eggs, and are a good low-maintenance bedding option.

Pros

  • Very thick and soft  
  • Keeps eggs clean and dry
  • Very easy to clean
  • Doesn’t get moldy   
  • Fluffs out easily
  • Provides good footing for chickens 
  • Expands easily  
  • Easy to cut and resize
  • 100% biodegradable material

Cons

  • We wish they come in a bigger size 
  • A bit pricey

Summary

If good thickness is your priority in nesting pads, then the Cackle Hatchery Laying Hen Nest Box Pads might be what you’re looking for.  

These pads are soft and very thick while still allowing airflow, so we never had to deal with issues like molds. Plus, we can tell that our hens find these very comfortable— within an hour of putting these in the nesting boxes, our hens started laying eggs, much to our surprise! If you’re tired of very thin and fragile nesting pads that break at first use, these pads are the solution. 

We love that our eggs stay clean and dry with these pads. These are made from 100% biodegradable excelsior fibers with a brown Kraft paper backing. They work by drawing moisture down and away from your hens and their eggs, resulting in a very sanitary nesting environment.  

Because these pads have a paper backing, we’ve had the easiest clean-up with these— just shake out the chicken waste and re-fluff them for reuse. And we definitely get a lot of use out of these; it takes about two months before we have to replace them.  

Also…

If you have a problem with your chickens constantly eating the bedding, these are perfect. We find that our hens don’t like eating these, which is good. And if your issue is chickens always kicking out their bedding? These pads are your answer. Our hens couldn’t kick them out of the box, and since they also provide a stable footing, our hens no longer step on the eggs. No more broken eggs!   

Now…

After getting scratched for months, they will get a bit shredded, but we like that they still remain attached to the paper backing. 

We also wish they come in bigger sizes. They work great for our smaller boxes; they are easy to cut and resize, as well. However, we have to use two pieces for our bigger nesting boxes, which is a small con for us. 

Best Thick Padded Chicken Coop Bedding

Standlee Hay Company Wheat or Barley Chopped Straw for Animal Bedding

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Value for Money
100
Absorbency
90
Durability
80
Easy to Clean
100
Odor Control
90
Material – Barley and wheat straw
No Of Pack – 1
Size
Compressed: 2.0 Cu. ft./56.6 L
Expanded: 10 Cu. ft./283.2 L
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – Standlee Hay Company

Overall Score:

92

The Bottom Line:

The Standlee Hay Company Wheat Or Barley Chopped Straw For Animal Bedding is a premium-quality, heat-treated straw bedding that is easy to use, soft, and very much worth the price as it lasts for months.

Pros

  • Very cost-effective 
  • Contains a very generous amount 
  • Soft and cushions the eggs well
  • Provides warmth to the chickens 
  • Heat-treated 
  • Biodegradable  
  • Good for cold climates
  • Great for a small coop  
  • Comes in a lightweight resealable plastic bag 
  • The packaging keeps it dry and fresh, even for months 
  • Easy to store  
  • Certified noxious weed-free

Cons

  • A bit too tightly packed, so it can be hard to take it out of the package at first 
  • It can be messy and get everywhere

Summary

Looking for some premium-quality straw bedding? Look no further than the Standlee Hay Company Wheat Or Barley Chopped Straw For Animal Bedding.

This straw bedding comes in a big plastic bag, which most chicken keepers will probably take for granted, but we really appreciate this. When we received the package, we were testing out another product, so we weren’t able to use it right away. It was left unopened for about three months, but when we opened it, lo and behold, the straw was still in pristine condition, dry and fresh! 

Aside from keeping the product dry, the bag is also lightweight and easy to handle. We like that we can just reseal the bag and store any leftover straw until it’s time to use it again.

Each bag weighs 25 pounds, and it was a pleasant surprise to see the generous amount a bag contains— really saved us from weekly trips to feed stores. The straws are chopped into about 4-inch pieces and very compressed. 

What’s more…

Trust us when we say that one bag will last you months! We’ve been using this for about ten chicken coops, and we barely made a dent in it. It feels very much like a bottomless bag.

We find that there are a lot of advantages to chopped straw. Because it’s chopped into smaller pieces, it’s very easy just to throw out any soiled parts and keep the clean parts. Also, unlike unchopped straw, this product provides more warmth to our chickens since there isn’t much space between each piece. It’s easy to distribute, as well. 

This straw is certified noxious weed-free and was heat-treated to kill any seeds that could germinate, so you never have to worry about any plant growth during warm days. Unlike hay, this one doesn’t retain moisture, so you don’t have to worry about molds either.  

A little goes a long way with this straw, and they’re very soft. We like the size too; the pieces are neither too short nor too long, and they don’t have that musty smell other straw and hay beddings have. 

Here’s the thing, though…

This straw is quite dusty when we put it in the nesting boxes. However, the dust does disappear after it settles down, and there won’t be any dust when you fluff up the straw. 

It can be a bit messy, too, with the pieces getting everywhere, so just be careful when taking it out of the package.

Best Biodegradable Chicken Coop Bedding

Eaton Pet and Pasture, Naturally Grown Hemp Pet Bedding for Chicken Coop

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Value for Money
90
Absorbency
90
Durability
80
Easy to Clean
90
Odor Control
100
Material – 100% Naturally grown hemp
No Of Pack – 1
Size – n/a
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – Eaton Hemp

Overall Score:

90

The Bottom Line:

The Eaton Pet And Pasture Naturally Grown Hemp Pet Bedding For Chicken Coop is a clean, pure, fluffy, and highly sustainable bedding that’s perfect for young chicks and sensitive chickens.

Pros

  • Made from organic, very minimally processed material  
  • Super soft and fluffy 
  • Great for chickens of all ages, including baby chicks  
  • Completely dust-free 
  • Easy to spot-clean 
  • Keeps the coop smelling fresh 
  • Improves chickens’ well-being
  • Not messy or easily blown by the wind 
  • Biodegradable, compostable, and sustainable 
  • Eco-friendly 
  • Comes in a durable packaging

Cons

  • Not cheap 
  • Has a tendency to leave some residue on the eggs when it gets wet

Summary

If you have very sensitive chickens, the Eaton Pet And Pasture, Naturally Grown Hemp Pet Bedding For Chicken Coop is an excellent option for something that’s minimally processed and made from organic material.   

This bedding uses 100% naturally grown hemp that hasn’t been chemically treated in any way— no pesticides, no herbicides, so you can be sure that you’re getting very pure bedding for your chickens.

We’re very selective about the beddings we use for our young chicks, and this is one of the few we allow inside our chicken coop nursery. It’s super soft, very cozy, and hypoallergenic, so we’re confident that our baby chicks won’t get irritated. It’s absolutely free of dust, as well, so we never had a problem with our chicks contracting respiratory infections.

Actually… 

Within a month of using this, we noticed that our chicks looked healthier and more bright-eyed. This bedding has a very pleasant scent that helps keep our coop smelling fresh.

It’s twice more absorbent than other beddings we’ve tried. It catches any chicken waste before it gets to the floor, so our weekly coop clean-up is now a piece of cake. Also, it’s not messy and doesn’t fly around easily when the wind blows.

As a bonus…

This bedding comes in environment-friendly and durable packaging, which is nice. We like that it’s both biodegradable and compostable, so it’s very sustainable and eco-friendly.

Just something we noticed… 

This bedding has a tendency to stick to the eggs when it gets wet, which leaves some residue on the eggs. It’s easy to wash off, though, so it’s not a big deal to us.

It’s not exactly cheap, but for a bag that lasts for more than a month and is guaranteed safe for chickens of all ages, we’d say it’s more than worth the price. 

Best Chicken Coop Bedding For Healthy Chicks

Windy Ridge Co. Natural Chicken Nesting Pads

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Value for Money
80
Absorbency
80
Durability
100
Easy to Clean
90
Odor Control
80
Material – Aspen excelsior fibers
No Of Pack – 10
Size – 13 x 13 inches
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – Windy Ridge Co.

Overall Score:

86

The Bottom Line:

Well-constructed and super durable, the Windy Ridge Co. Natural Chicken Nesting Pads feature great moisture control that makes keeping your coop clean very easy.

Pros

  • Well-made and well-constructed  
  • Healthy for chickens and baby chicks
  • Super comfortable  
  • Very thick and durable
  • Provides a stable footing for newly hatched chicks and helps in the prevention of splayed legs 
  • Excellent moisture reduction and control
  • Great for any coop size  
  • Each pad can be separated into layers  
  • Hassle-free cleaning
  • 100% biodegradable 

Cons

  • A bit on the rough side 
  • It can be a bit difficult to cut and resize due to thickness and durability

Summary

The Windy Ridge Co. Natural Chicken Nesting Pads are one of our top choices when it comes to keeping our chickens and newly hatched chicks healthy and comfortable.  

Manufactured from Great Lakes Aspen excelsior fibers, these nesting pads are natural, completely safe for your chickens, and 100% biodegradable. Most importantly, these promote a healthy environment for your young chicks to grow in.

We love how well-made these pads are. The long fibers interlock, making these pads very durable. These are very thick and don’t have a slippery surface. They provide maximum comfort and stable footing for your newly hatched chicks, helping to prevent splayed legs and other potential issues.  

These pads control and reduce moisture, resulting in very clean, fresh eggs every time. Any dropping sits on top of the pads, away from the eggs, which we can easily shake off, making cleaning hassle-free. We like that we can pull out the soiled top layer and continue using what’s left of the pad.

Not only that…  

They also help us gather eggs much quicker, as your chickens wouldn’t need to scratch around to find the eggs. Because they’re so thick and durable, they hold up well even after many scratches from our chickens.

And if you’re on a tight budget? These are perfect, as they’re very cost-effective and economical. Each pad can be separated into three layers, so you can use one for multiple nesting boxes! 

But we’re telling you…

These nesting pads aren’t the smoothest; however, we like it that way as it discourages our chickens from digging through the pad too much.

They can be a bit difficult to cut and resize, as well, but we just take that as a testament to their durability, toughness, and ruggedness. 

Best Odor-Reducing Chicken Coop Bedding

Old Dominion Hemp Small Animal Hemp Bedding

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Value for Money
90
Absorbency
100
Durability
80
Easy to Clean
90
Odor Control
100
Material – Hemp
No Of Pack – 1
Size – 30 qts.
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – Old Dominion Hemp

Overall Score:

92

The Bottom Line:

The highly absorbent Old Dominion Hemp Small Animal Hemp Bedding is a must-have for a chicken coop that looks and smells clean and fresh.

Pros

  • Great odor control 
  • Makes the chicken coop smelling fresh and clean 
  • Highly absorbent
  • Biodegradable  
  • Decomposes fast
  • Little to no dust; great if you have allergies
  • Pesticide- and herbicide-free 
  • Distributes easily 
  • Expands a lot 
  • Not messy and doesn’t get everywhere
  • Reasonable price 

Cons

  • A little pricey 

Summary

Want your coop to smell nice all the time? Check out the Old Dominion Hemp Small Animal Hemp Bedding

This bedding is built from hemp material, which has natural high absorbency properties and great odor resistance. Compared to other materials, hemp also decomposes faster, making it a good choice for garden composting.  

We like how easy it is to distribute. It’s packed tightly in the bag but expands easily to about 30 quarts. It has a very minimal scent and virtually no dust, which we appreciate, as some of us have allergies. 

This bedding provides a low-dust environment and better air quality for our chickens, and we don’t have to worry about serious health issues. Less sneezing for us and better health for our chickens— win-win! 

Besides…

Chicken owners know how annoying it is to deal with the liquid in chicken droppings, which causes a lot of the nasty smells. Well, this product takes care of that— it absorbs the liquid, resulting in easier clean-up and a coop that smells clean and fresh. That means no more weekly coop cleaning and frequent change of bedding!

This bedding also doesn’t stick to our clothes, hair, or anywhere and is not messy at all. It’s very soft, and our chickens enjoy scratching it. 

If you want to try hemp bedding without paying a lot, this is a good choice as it’s more affordable than others. Sure, it’s still a little pricey, but you’re also getting a giant bag that should last several months. Even after filling an entire coop, there’s still a lot left in the bag, so it’s actually cheaper in the long run, and we find the price reasonable.

Best Chicken Coop Bedding With Minerals

Standlee Hay Company Flock Fresh Premium Poultry Bedding

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Value for Money
90
Absorbency
90
Durability
90
Easy to Clean
80
Odor Control
90
Material – Barley and wheat straw
No Of Pack – 1
Size – 1Cu. ft.
Compostable – Yes
Manufacturer – STB6Y

Overall Score:

88

The Bottom Line:

The Standlee Hay Company Flock Fresh Premium Poultry Bedding is made of natural, premium ingredients and the mineral Zeolite that work to keep your chicken coop dry and clean while promoting good chicken health.

Pros

  • Completely natural 
  • Made with Zeolite granules and Alfalfa 
  • Excellent moisture control 
  • Promotes healthy digestion in chickens 
  • Keeps chicken coop dry, fresh, and odor-free
  • Compostable

Cons

  • Not that easy to clean

Summary

The Standlee Hay Company Flock Fresh Premium Poultry Bedding mixes the mineral Zeolite with naturally sun-cured premium chopped barley or wheat straw to create high-quality bedding that’s completely natural and safe for your feathered friends. 

The scientifically formulated mixture results in a bedding that has excellent moisture control while capturing odors for a clean and nice-smelling chicken coop. 

Additionally… 

This bedding also has Alfalfa added, so your chickens can peck at the bedding and retain a healthy digestive system. 

Overall, this is definitely one of the healthiest chicken bedding options that are available on the market. We like that it promotes good health for our chickens whilst keeping them and the coop dry and smelling fresh. Bonus points for being compostable! 

This bedding isn’t the easiest to clean, but everything else considered, this is definitely worth the effort for us.

Section 3: Buyers Guide: How To Choose The Best Chicken Coop Bedding 

Chicken Beds - Bugoutbill.com
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What are the different types of chicken coop beddings? 

Shavings  

Shavings are one of the most popular bedding materials amongst backyard chicken keepers. This bedding type is easily accessible and found in your local supply store, offers excellent odor control and high absorbency, and is very easy to clean. Shavings are also compostable and awesome at removing any bad smells by imparting their own pleasant ones.

They come in different forms, the most common ones being pine shavings and cedar shavings. These two, in particular, are known for their delightful woodsy scents that also act as an insect repellent. The downside is that the scent can be overwhelming for your chickens, so if you’re going to use shavings, make sure that your coop is well-ventilated.

Straw  

Another highly popular bedding option is straw. Straw was the chicken bedding of choice for chicken keeping before the advent of commercially bought wood chips and shavings. It’s cheap, can be found pretty much anywhere, and is very insulating, so on cold winters, this is definitely your best bet to keep your chickens warm. Also, straw can help to stimulate your chickens mentally, as they love playing around with it. It needs to be replaced often, though, and you’ll have to deal with matting and knots, so keep those in mind. 

Grass clippings 

Grass clippings are a simple, no-fuss type of bedding that has high absorbency and is a popular choice for doing the Deep Litter Method. It’s completely natural, compostable, and, best of all, free. Just make sure that the grass you’re using is pesticide-free!

Recycled paper  

Recycled paper is another good low-cost option that’s soft enough for young chicks. It also offers insulation, but it absorbs so quickly that you’ll have to replace the bedding very often.           Recycled paper can be slippery for chickens’ feet, and it’s not the best option if you have a large coop, as you’ll have to use a ton to cover the entire coop.

Features to look out for 

Absorbency  

When choosing a chicken coop bedding, absorbency is an essential feature that you must look for. Excess moisture is the primary cause of many issues chicken farmers have to deal with inside the coop, such as bad odor and molds. Too much moisture also results in the bedding releasing ammonia, causing many chickens health problems like respiratory health problems and things like footpad dermatitis.

Keeping those in mind, always choose bedding that’s very absorbent. Wood shavings, hemp, and recycled paper are some of the most highly absorbent bedding types.

Odor control  

No one likes a smelly coop, especially not your chickens, who have to spend most of their time inside the coop. To keep your chickens— and yourself— happy, get a bedding that helps control odor. Some beddings, like pine and cedar shavings, have a pleasant scent that can mask the smell of chicken waste; those are great options for odor control. Just make sure that your coop is well-ventilated to avoid overwhelming your chickens. 

Good cushioning 

Another purpose of chicken coop beddings is to provide good cushioning to your chickens and their eggs. For this purpose, choose bedding that has a thick layer and is soft— not only will it provide a good landing area for chickens jumping off the roost and a comfortable nest for them but you’ll also have zero broken eggs.

Chicken Coop Bedding Top Tips

  • Always make sure that your chicken coop is dry and has enough ventilation to prevent the formation of molds and unpleasant odors. 
  • Chickens have a tendency to peck on and eat some parts of the bedding. It’s normal, but you still have to make sure they stay safe and not choke. If you’re using wood shavings as bedding, one way to do this is by avoiding small-cut ones.
  • Aside from keeping your coop dry, choosing bedding with very little to no dust will help promote good respiratory health for your chickens, as dust contributes greatly to respiratory health problems. 
  • When buying a chicken coop bedding, consider the size of your coop and how many chickens you have, as well. If you have a large coop, straw and pine shavings are some of the best options out there. 
  • One easy way to keep your chicken coop clean is by doing the Deep Litter Method. The Deep Litter Method requires some practice to get it right, so make sure to do proper research before you start.

Section 5: FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions 

Q – What is the best thing to put in the bottom of a chicken coop?

A – A good chicken coop bedding on the bottom of your coop will ensure that your chickens are comfortable, warm, and cozy.

Q – What is the best bedding for chickens to lay eggs?

A – When it’s time for your hens to lay eggs, beddings that will provide ample cushioning for the eggs are a must to avoid broken eggs, as they will protect the eggs from hitting the coop floor or the hard wood of a nesting box. Ensuring that your hens are laying on comfortable beddings goes a long way in ensuring that the laying process goes smoothly. Absorbency is another factor you have to consider. You want bedding that will absorb moisture, so that you’ll end up with clean, dry eggs without any cracks.

Q – How often do you change chicken bedding?

A – This will depend on a lot of factors, such as bedding type, how many chickens are using the bedding, and how absorbent the bedding is. In general, though, you’ll have to replace the bedding after four to six months. 

Round-Up

Section 6: Conclusion: Best Chicken Coop Bedding

Bedding For Chicken Coop - Bugoutbill.com
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It’s a huge misconception that raising chickens is dirty and stinky work. Well, it can definitely be messy at times, but it doesn’t have to be an unpleasant experience filled with foul-smelling coops and broken eggs. Choosing the right bedding will make chicken keeping easier, less messy, and, yes, even fun.  

By now, you probably have your choice of bedding for your coop. But if you still don’t, and you’re short on time and need some more help, here are our top three choices: 

The Precision Pet by Petmate Excelsior Nesting Pads Chicken Bedding is our Editor’s Choice for a reason— it’s super soft yet durable, provides a good landing for the eggs, absorbs moisture well, and is 100% biodegradable. It’s everything you’ll want in bedding! 

Meanwhile, if your top priority is staying within your budget, we highly recommend our Best Value awardee, the Manna Pro Fresh Flakes Chicken Coop Bedding. It’s not just affordable but also cost-effective. A little goes a long way with this product, and a bag will last you months, so you don’t need to keep buying every week. And it keeps our coop completely odor-free!  

And lastly, there’s the Small Pet Select Jumbo Aspen Bedding, which is our Top Pick. Now, this is the one you want if you want your coop to smell fresh and woodsy. It’s super absorbent as well and is all-natural! 

We hope we’ve been helpful to you in choosing a bedding for your coop. 

Please don’t hesitate to share with us your pick!

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