Composting Chicken Poop

By jthornton · Sep 22, 2019 · Updated Oct 2, 2019 ·
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5/5,
  1. jthornton
    We had a great discussion on the forum about composting here. This article is just a reference for me and others with the highlights from that discussion.

    Composting chicken poop year round you need a source of carbon to balance out the nitrogen. We all hear about greens(nitrogen) and browns (carbon) but in a nutshell greens have a higher nitrogen content than browns and both have nitrogen and carbon. You need more carbon rich stuff than nitrogen rich.

    Stuff with higher nitrogen (greens)
    Chicken Poop
    Coffee Grounds
    Green Plants (grass, leaves, trimmings)
    Vegetable and fruit scraps

    Stuff with higher carbon (browns)
    Dried Leaves
    Shredded Paper
    Saw Dust

    I have 3 bins and rotate them, I keep the bin with the fresh poop covered up but let the chickens dig in the other two bins. I add poop and carbon rich items. If you know a wood worker they will have all the carbon you need. If I start a new pile I add nitrogen items like grass clippings along with shredded paper or sawdust and water it down good. Typically you leave your pile alone when it's hot and turn it when it goes cold.

    If the pile is gummy and sticky and or smells add more carbon.

    Some photos of what I have. This is my finished bin, nice and clean earthy smells, powdery can't hardly pick it up with a pitchfork. Chickens are allowed to dig all they want in the finished pile.
    compost-done.JPG

    This is my working active pile where I add chicken poop, water and sawdust or leaves and I have to turn this one before I let the hens out or I'll have 5-6 hens in there digging for worms. I did water it after I took this photo... and I don't let the hens in here with fresh poop. When I stop adding poop I'll let it sit for a few months before taking the cover off.
    compost-working.JPG

    Last but not least is my fresh starting pile. It's a mix of leaves, grass, and kitchen scraps for now. I water it well and let the hens dig in there all they want. When I stop adding poop to the active pile and start adding it here I'll cover it up to keep the hens out.
    compost-new.JPG

    JT

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    About Author

    jthornton
    I'm a self employed automation engineer and tinkerer living on a dead end dirt road off of a dirt road in South East Missouri in the hills.
    Secondof9 and Papa John59 like this.

Recent User Reviews

  1. NHMountainMan
    ""
    5/5, 5 out of 5, reviewed Oct 15, 2019 at 7:06 AM
    Very helpful. Thanks for taking the time to write this!
  2. N F C
    "Summarizing Composting"
    5/5, 5 out of 5, reviewed Oct 2, 2019
    To the point and photos included...good job
    jthornton and Secondof9 like this.
  3. WannaBeHillBilly
    "Short and cracking!"
    5/5, 5 out of 5, reviewed Sep 23, 2019
    30 second read and you know the basics of composting.
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