Best medium and cleaning tips for run and coop

Farmer40

In the Brooder
Sep 10, 2018
10
6
26
Hi!! First time chicken mom here to 10, 14 week old RIR’s. Right now their run is covered and the coop is inside the run. They sleep on a pallet on the roof of the coop by choice. I used pine shavings in their brooder and then in their run once they grew older and switched to hay when the pine shavings weren’t available. Oh, there is a base of sand in the run. I am concerned about impacted crops as my girls love to eat the hay. My questions are as follows; Can I use pine shavings in the run (mixed with food grade DE and coop freshner) and offer them just a small spread of hay in part of the run to play in (they love to scratch through it)? Also, how often should I be cleaning the run? Do I just pick up the really poopy areas and then add shavings? How often? Just a note, I switch out the hay often because I’m in Florida and it’s humid even now in the Fall and I am concerned about mold.(Which is why I’d prefer to use pine shavings) Any advice and/or ideas are greatly appreciated as I love my girls dearly and want them to be as happy as possible!! ♥️Thank you in advance!!
 

Melky

Spring has sprung!
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
4,154
20,244
962
Edgewood, KY
I don't use sand here because not readily available or cheap here. I use TSC fine mulch shavings in my coop and I use dirt the ground came with, fine pine mulch landscaping quality, and will be adding peat as better at reducing ammonia. I added dry leaves in fall here as free and good for my garden I compost everything from my coop to my garden. I am debating straw for winter as supposed to be warmer but right now what I have is ok till leaves a plenty run out. I also use zeolite added for coop odor eliminator as reduces ammonia, moisture, and pH thereby reducing risk of ammonia toxicity. Rest is clean/dry.
:):frow
:welcome
See article on ammonia toxicity to prevent during winter:
https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/ammonia-toxicity-in-chickens.74475/:):frow:welcome
 

Farmgirl1878

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
Mar 17, 2017
742
1,712
267
Piketon, Ohio
Pics of your set up and girls would be nice. It sounds like you’re doing okay from the description, as long as the coop and run are large enough.

My run is attached to my 8x12’ coop. The coop, nest boxes, and run are all filled with sand and zeolite. I scoop poop first thing in the morning and usually once or twice in the afternoon (basically whenever I’m out there). I just use a kitty litter scoop and a mesh sieve that’s meant to be used in a wok. Once a month or so I use a sand sieve to clean all the poop out of the two poop decks. The run doesn’t get scooped very often because the 15 birds usually have already ground it into the sand by the time I get out there, but it doesn’t seem to matter.
 
Last edited:

Melky

Spring has sprung!
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
4,154
20,244
962
Edgewood, KY
As far as cleaning, I check the coop/run every couple days for a little cleaning of coop scooping out dirty stuff and applying fresh fine mulch bedding. I weekly to every other week depending on how dirty it is scrub everything down with 50/50 white vinegar/H2O with few drops of lavender essential oils for aroma therapy including roosting bars in coop/run. I put in zeolite coop odor eliminator, spray poultry protector in coop/run, and puff food grade DE in both places to prevent pests. I change out nesting box mats with fresh ones. I also add fresh herbs to nesting boxes or nesting box flakes for fresh scent. Add new bedding in coop/run. I frequently clean when chickens are out in yard so if spray something it has time to settle. However, you can do this while in coop/run if you do not let chickens out just move chickens to opposite side you are working on. If cleaning coop, they are out in run. If cleaning run, they are in coop etc. Hope this helps!:)
 

Farmgirl1878

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
Mar 17, 2017
742
1,712
267
Piketon, Ohio
As far as cleaning, I check the coop/run every couple days for a little cleaning of coop scooping out dirty stuff and applying fresh fine mulch bedding. I weekly to every other week depending on how dirty it is scrub everything down with 50/50 white vinegar/H2O with few drops of lavender essential oils for aroma therapy including roosting bars in coop/run. I put in zeolite coop odor eliminator, spray poultry protector in coop/run, and puff food grade DE in both places to prevent pests. I change out nesting box mats with fresh ones. I also add fresh herbs to nesting boxes or nesting box flakes for fresh scent. Add new bedding in coop/run. I frequently clean when chickens are out in yard so if spray something it has time to settle. However, you can do this while in coop/run if you do not let chickens out just move chickens to opposite side you are working on. If cleaning coop, they are out in run. If cleaning run, they are in coop etc. Hope this helps!:)
Lol, if I don’t lock my birds up or kick them out into the yard, they’d ALL be inside watching and supervising as I scoop up their poop! My chickens love, love, love to follow hubby and I around and are always curious about what we are doing. They’ll stand and watch, and cluck, and try to get as close as possible! It’s hysterical! :pop
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
94,902
125,342
1,807
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
-I use poop boards under roosts with thin(<1/2") layer of sand/PDZ mix, sifted daily(takes 5-10mins) into bucket going to friends compost.

-Scrape big or wet poops off roost and ramps as needed.

-Pine shavings on coop floor, add some occasionally, totally changed out once or twice a year, old shavings added to run.

-Runs have semi-deep litter, never clean anything out, just add smaller dry materials.

-Nests are bedded with straw, add some occasionally, change out if needed(broken egg).

There is no odor, unless a fresh cecal has been dropped and when I open the bucket to add more poop.

That's how I 'clean', have not found any reason to clean 'deeper' in 5 years.
 

llombardo

Crowing
Mar 11, 2018
3,015
4,803
346
Illinois
I use flax bedding in the coop. On the floor area I take it and add as I go. They don't ever poop on the ranp. In the other area I use flax and I scoop out every couple weeks. I hardly ever see poop in the run because they constantly are scratching. I use mulch, grass clippings and leaves are in there as of today. They had a blast with those. If I see it I hose it down. They do poop on the rabbit hutches, activity center and coop roof--I hose that all down. I've heard posible say they poop a lot at night, but mine really don't. I am not complaining.
 

Farmer40

In the Brooder
Sep 10, 2018
10
6
26
Pics of your set up and girls would be nice. It sounds like you’re doing okay from the description, as long as the coop and run are large enough.

My run is attached to my 8x12’ coop. The coop, nest boxes, and run are all filled with sand and zeolite. I scoop poop first thing in the morning and usually once or twice in the afternoon (basically whenever I’m out there). I just use a kitty litter scoop and a mesh sieve that’s meant to be used in a wok. Once a month or so I use a sand sieve to clean all the poop out of the two poop decks. The run doesn’t get scooped very often because the 15 birds usually have already ground it into the sand by the time I get out there, but it doesn’t seem to matter.
Thank you for your reply!
 

MANNA-PRO

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom