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Run cleanliness and ground cover

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I have been trying to clean the poop off the ground in the chicken run.  A rake doesn't do it and I don't want to pick up with a tiny cat litter shovel or my hands.  The ground is just dirt now that the chickens have eaten and dug up all the grass.  I tried putting pine shavings on the ground, but they just blow away.  I have read about using DE, but is there anything else to add to that that will help keep it healthy for the chickens and easier to get the poop up?:/

post #2 of 10

You could do sand - many folks like that and it is reported easy to clean, though I would think that rain would quickly soak the poop down into the sand so that eventually the sand would become fouled.

I like a deep litter approach to the run - think of it as replicating the forest floor in that you have layer upon layer of bio-mass.  In this situation it isn't about getting the poop "up" but rather the poop becoming part of the substrate

Where are we going, and why are we in this hand basket?
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Where are we going, and why are we in this hand basket?
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post #3 of 10
Have you researched the Deep Litter Method?
2 Buff Orpingtons, 4 Black Sex Links,. 1 Golden Retriever, 1 "old man" cat and 2 Betta.
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2 Buff Orpingtons, 4 Black Sex Links,. 1 Golden Retriever, 1 "old man" cat and 2 Betta.
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post #4 of 10

What Ol Grey Mare said!

post #5 of 10
Deep litter!
Mother of 3 humans and 8 feathered babies.
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Mother of 3 humans and 8 feathered babies.
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post #6 of 10

Here's a great description of contents and how to manage organic 'bedding' in a run or coop...and there's a great video of what it looks like.

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1037998/muddy-run-help-please#post_16017992

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

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Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply
post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ol Grey Mare View Post

You could do sand - many folks like that and it is reported easy to clean, though I would think that rain would quickly soak the poop down into the sand so that eventually the sand would become fouled.
I like a deep litter approach to the run - think of it as replicating the forest floor in that you have layer upon layer of bio-mass.  In this situation it isn't about getting the poop "up" but rather the poop becoming part of the substrate

Agree
Edited by centralcaligirl - 4/23/17 at 8:45pm
post #8 of 10

DLM = deep litter method 

 

I got bare clay dirt in my RC (run/coop) have considered sand but it was recommended (BYC member) due to the humidity & rain (HI) go with DLM.  I'm so glad I did but what makes it even better is having a "poop board" under their roost.  Oh yea, Sweet PDZ in the poop board & sprinkled in the shavings.

 

Never thought having chickens could be so EASY!  Chickens work the hard clay loose & I shovel out to use where I need dirt, we got a great system going.  I have an "open" RC with shower curtains I close up at night, ventilated 100% & dry.  It's been a year & a half LOVE it.

 

post #9 of 10

A shot of a small coop, using grass hay for the deep litter, plus other stuff now and then, but mostly old, coarse grass hay. Not the a good legume hay like alfalfa, but old coarse grass hay. This stuff is so old and bad no animal would eat it and would starve to death with a full belly if they did.

 

 

That is one square bale of hay covering an area of about 8' x 10'. The birds will scatter and spread it. It will last a few months before it rots down to be replaced with another just like it. No mud, flies or odor. Prior to going with a deep litter, this coop had all three.

post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 


Thank you for your help!!  Love photos!

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