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deep litter method why?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I am NOT judging anyone I just can't grasp the reason for this method. It just creeps me out and seems very unsanitary.

My mom used to sort of do that- add bedding weekly and it would be 6-12" deep come spring but she then hoed it out in the spring and once a month all summer. The spring hoe out was god awful stink (no smell til you started hoeing it out)

 

when I had chickens prior (30 years ago) I cleaned the coop to the bare floor every week and once a month in warm weather sanitized it

 

Maybe I am just a germ nut but I can't bring myself to do deep litter.. Is there a really good reason TO do it? (aside from the heat generated from the rotting bedding) It seems like it would rot the coop floor out???????????? and can you pass an ag inspection with it?

Diane

 

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Diane

 

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post #2 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by rottlady View Post

I am NOT judging anyone I just can't grasp the reason for this method. It just creeps me out and seems very unsanitary.

Low maintenance and regardless of what you mind is telling you it's not unsanitary, in fact it's more sanitary then a few days of neglect in a regular littered coop..
Quote:
My mom used to sort of do that- add bedding weekly and it would be 6-12" deep come spring but she then hoed it out in the spring and once a month all summer. The spring hoe out was god awful stink (no smell til you started hoeing it out)

If it stunk that means it was not being turned and flipped as needed by the chickens to property function as it should resulting in a 'caked poo' litter...
Quote:
Maybe I am just a germ nut but I can't bring myself to do deep litter.. Is there a really good reason TO do it? (aside from the heat generated from the rotting bedding) It seems like it would rot the coop floor out???????????? and can you pass an ag inspection with it?

Good bacteria is beneficial, and if done properly the good bacteria far outweighs the 'germs', and yes you can pass inspection with it, almost all commercial chicken houses (as well as other livestock houses) now use this method... It's a fully accepted practice as long as you do it right...

As for a good reason, it's very low maintenance, it's very low cost, it's environmentally friendly, and studies have shown that the immune system of the birds actually benefits from it, just to name a few...
Edited by MeepBeep - 4/3/16 at 12:17pm
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

so to do really need to make sure it is fluffed and flipped at least once a week to dry it out?

 

I don't think I can bring myself to do this method I just wanted to understand it thank you

Diane

 

D's Birds & Bees

Working Class Canine Wildlife Recovery

Frontier Rottweilers

Dogs by Diane Portraits

 

Barnevelders, Crested Cream Legbars, Delawares

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Diane

 

D's Birds & Bees

Working Class Canine Wildlife Recovery

Frontier Rottweilers

Dogs by Diane Portraits

 

Barnevelders, Crested Cream Legbars, Delawares

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post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by rottlady View Post

so to do really need to make sure it is fluffed and flipped at least once a week to dry it out?

I don't think I can bring myself to do this method I just wanted to understand it thank you

My chicken do about 95% of the fluffing by themselves, you can encourage them to fluff it by tossing out scratch... I only fluff a few locations they tend to ignore manually maybe every other month, only takes a few minutes with a pitch fork...

This is what it should look like, it should hold it's shape for a bit when compressed in your hand but for the most part, it should crumble away and fall off your hand... I like to equate it's consistency to fresh potting soil right out of the bag...


post #5 of 7
Do you think compost is unsanitary? Essentially that is what deep litter is. If compost is not managed well it stinks. When it is properly managed it makes black gold...
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

I think compost is rotting vegetation turning hopefully to a dirt type product. I don't think of compost as a bedding product though no

Diane

 

D's Birds & Bees

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Barnevelders, Crested Cream Legbars, Delawares

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Diane

 

D's Birds & Bees

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Barnevelders, Crested Cream Legbars, Delawares

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post #7 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by rottlady View Post

I think compost is rotting vegetation turning hopefully to a dirt type product. I don't think of compost as a bedding product though no

A properly functioning compost or deep litter is a controlled aerobic decomposition process where that balance of carbon, nitrogen, water and oxygen produce a nutrient rich compost, mess up the balance of the carbon, nitrogen, water and oxygen then you get a smelly rotting pile that is not composting properly...

In the end yes technically they are all a 'rotting' process, but just like cheese, yogurt, beer, whiskey or what not the 'rotting' process can be controlled or influenced to produce something besides a foul smelling bacteria infested mess...
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