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Bedding advice for run in wetlands?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by quotha3, Aug 13, 2017.

  1. quotha3

    quotha3 In the Brooder

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    I have a backyard coop with a run. The run is partially covered. In the summer in Florida it floods and parts of it are not draining. In previous years I've added sand, but the flooding washes the sand out and I'm back where I started.

    If it's wet it stinks and attracts flies.

    I'm curious what might work. I have read about deep litter, but there seems to be a lot of different options and most seem based on the bedding staying dry.

    I was thinking of putting gravel down and trying a deep litter on top of pine shavings and straw? But I'm looking for the advice of anyone who has a litter that works in a run that gets flooded in the rain.
     
    RUNuts likes this.
  2. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Crowing

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    I am having deja vu over this post. There was another identical just recently. I'll see if I can find it.
     
  3. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Crowing

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    Well darn, I can't find in. Anyway, plenty of us have uncovered runs and do deep litter. Only 1/3 of mine is covered. It's soggy right now from days of rain but nothing like it would be with just dirt. It does help with drainage, poop smell, and will help eventually elevate it so it won't pool up in there.
     
    RUNuts likes this.
  4. VintageDutchGirl

    VintageDutchGirl In the Brooder

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    Like quotha3, this has been my #1 question regarding deep litter: Will it work in a partially covered run that gets a lot of rain? I live in the rainy PNW so it is definitely a concern. Worried it will become a huge stinky slimy mess. My run currently has a deep layer of gravel so it drains super well, but I also don't want gravel all mixed in with the deep litter when I do want to remove it for use around my yard. Would it work to add a layer of hardware cloth on top of the gravel to prevent mixing but allow drainage?
     
  5. RUNuts

    RUNuts Free Ranging

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    Interesting question. I'd be tempted to just dump wood chips down and see how nature handles things. But that is a long term solution. I'm afraid it would be stinky the first year.

    Living in humid Houston, I'm contemplating similar issues and once the grass is gone, wood chips will come in mass. How to keep the fencing from rusting out is an issue. Cinder block low wall?

    This really isn't an answer, but try it and report back.
     
    VintageDutchGirl likes this.
  6. msmolly

    msmolly Songster

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    I used to do wood chips but the chicken feed would filter through it and rot. The stink was so bad each spring it would have to be dug out- not a pleasant chore.
    Noe I use deep pea stone. It works great for 3 years now. It gets cery wet between snow thaw and tons of rain and wash from the hill above. When I feel it needs freshening up, I can scrap back the top layer of stone, sprinkle some Ag Lime, then cover it over again. Especially where food bowls are, I remove a few shovel full of stones now and then, sprinkle lime, and cover. Setting up a patio umbrella inside the run- to cover and shade the food and water area really helps. Good luck
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2017
    RUNuts likes this.
  7. RUNuts

    RUNuts Free Ranging

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    Good golly @msmolly !

    How deep were your wood chips? Partially composted or fresh from the shredder? Screened?

    I'm using partially composted and the small stuff disappears into the dirt. Large chunks float up & the hens kick those around. At present, this is only a small section of the run.

    Were you feeding crumble in a trough? I'm using a no mess bucket feeder in an old dog house. Don't feed the dirt. Some people with hold feed & the hens clean up the spilled food.

    I put a cup of feed on the wood chips & these girls clean it right up. Not starving, bucket feeder is free choice. Spreads the wood around very nicely too.

    Best wishes & glad the pea gravel is working for you.
     
    aart likes this.
  8. John W 59

    John W 59 In the Brooder

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