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HMTurner

What else can I try in the egg box.

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I have been putting wood chip in my egg box and my hybrids and silkies just don’t want to lay in it. They lay on the bars and the eggs frequently have cracks in them. What else can I try the person I brought my hens of said hey was bad for there lungs but my friend uses hay and has no trouble and all her birds lay in the egg box. Is hay a defiantly no no. What about coconut husk? 

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Presume you mean wood shavings HMT? Perhaps yours are too co***** and uncomfortable? You can buy some very soft dust extracted shavings which are for small rodents and up to this year that's what we have used. Hay can be used but you need to be sure it is dry and has no dust. Problem with hay is the hollow stems can hide mites and it can have mould spores in it which cause respiratory illness, so best avoided. We now use moss (Peter's suggestion) taken out carefully from the fields (no soil attached) which is then slowly dried on a suspended wire mesh frame in our barn. The end product is soft and bouncy and our chickens absolutely love it.

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Wish I had read about Hay and mites before - we rescued some chickens from neighbours who were moving back in spring and they came with a bag of Hay - food etc - I used the Hay in the nest box at the time as they were used to it -noticed red mite but didn't link the two together - jet washed the cube and dusted with red mite stuff and all gone - stopped with the hay - as it got cold I thought I would try the Hay that was still in the green house and lets just say jet washing on a cold November day is not so much fun - Hay now destroyed and another vote for auboise from me.

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