I normally use newspaper underneath where my budgies play during out-of-cage time, but it usually gets torn and needs to be replaced when I have to walk over it or need to remove it when vacuuming.
I was thinking of using a plastic floor mat since neither I nor the vacuum would tear it up, and cleaning would just be wiping with water and a little dish soap. My concern is that some plastics tend to smell like petroleum or whatever they're made of, and I'm worried the smell/fumes will affect me and my birds (or worse for the birds). The room the birds are in is a small bedroom.
If there's anyone who uses plastic mats like this; do yours smell weird over time and need to be replaced, or have you found a good mat that doesn't smell or hasn't affected your birds (and yourself) at all?
I simply use a bed sheet under my Prevue Hendryx F050 cage in the living room where 7 of my budgies are housed.
Using a sheet is great for catching all the seed hulls and poop as my birds have out-of-cage time during the majority of each day.
It's easy to take up when I vacuum the room twice daily as well.
I move the cage, fold the "mess" inside the sheet, take it outdoors and shake it off and then it goes directly into the washer for cleaning and another sheet takes it's place.
I have two sheets devoted to this purpose and they are alternated daily.
I tried a plastic mat upstairs under one of my F040 cages and found that for me it was much more trouble than it was worth.
The type mat I used was one that was meant to be used under a desk chair in a carpeted office.