Hi All, Just wanting some opinions please. I am currently building a large outdoor avairy (another one) since I've moved and am trying to work out what flooring is best, safest to put in. I know there has been some discussion on this before but I'd specifically like to hear from people that actually have concrete floors for their avairys. I have had concrete floors covered with untreated, jarrah wood chips and sawdust previously but it is the middle of winter now and Ive realised that it is getting really wet in the uncovered areas - and Im growing concerned about mould (although I havent actually seen any as yet. I understand why the pro-concrete people think that it is the safest hygenically but Ive got to say - my biggest concern is the hardness of the floor. I am just so worried that if a bird should fall (and they do sometimes) they would actually break a bone or wing when meeting such an unyielding floor. Does anyone have concrete on the floor of their avairys - if so, could you tell me if you have had experience with this, or found it concerning? BTW, my avairy is going to be about 50ft x 20ft and very high, so the birds will be flying quite a lot and Puffin, my young bird has just started learning to fly again after his accident and is not too steady with his landings/co-ordination, although MOST determined to get back in the air - despite too many crash landings for my liking. Opinions/comments appreciated. Anita
Anita when I was at the zoos all of the aviaries had concrete floors, including the indoor ones. We never had a problem with the birds getting hurt including the fledglings. Mold can build up so quickly before you ever see it. It's such a risk that the zoos clean up all substrates in animal areas on a daily basis to wash the floors, dry them and then lay clean. If you're afraid of hard landings hay is an easy substrate to clean up daily, offers a cushy landing and is relatively inexpensive. It does have to be changed daily though as mold can grow so quickly in damp hay. Nancy
Im lucky that I have a dad who's an engineer who can build it for nothing (well, lots of hugs and thankyous)so its just material costs - I built that cost into my budget when I moved and Im lucky to have a couple of acres to do it on. Im really excited, cant wait to have it up...Im going to position it under a grove of trees, lots of shelter and sunshine and visiting wild birds..I have built a couple of avairys now so I know what mistakes not to make - this is the biggest one yet, hopefully we'll stay settled for a long time now, they are not so thrilled to be back in their smaller cages, I can tell you!! Have just got 13 ton(!!!)of sand delivered for the concrete - I'll start taking photos. Thanks for advice re: hay Nancy - I'll be really careful. Anita
I've seen several cages that had either sand or gravel flooring. I prefer plain concrete. Easy to wash and clean. Sand had to be raked to clean but nothing can mold in it easily. Any liquids drain right through the sand too. Gravel seems harder to keep clean.
With a concrete floor the only thing I have trouble with is if it's level how will the water drain from it. To a drain pipe but then there is the chance it will get clogged. Sloped to the outside is better IMHO. I would have a curb around the outside edge of the concrete slab with a open area where all the debris and water can drain to. This will make it easy to pick up the leftovers and the water can be drained away from the avairy or into a drain or dry well.
I would love to have an avairy that size. Good luck.