Building my first coop: deep litter question


6 Years
Apr 26, 2013
I'm designing my coop & run for 8 chicks. Planning to do the deep litter method, but couldn't pick up from discussion threads: when I clean the coop/house where the hens roost, do I add all the droppings inside the run with the deep litter? Or do those droppings need to go into a different compost bin??? Coop will be 6'X4' and run will be 6'X12' with 10-12" for the deep litter.
I use the deep litter method (or maybe a variation of it?) with my chickens. I have a 10x10 coop (it's people sized) with an attached run with a dirt floor (rather large - maybe 10x20 or so) with 8 hens currently. I have two roosts, one on either side and I use pine shavings. Each morning, I clean the poops under the roosts and put them in a barrel which I use at a later date in my garden. I will spot clean poops in the run. Every evening I rake out the run and put that in the barrel too. I fluff things around periodically. Every so often, I will add another cube of shavings, usually when the shavings get lower or a fresh layer is needed. Someone on here mentioned to use those yellow dishwashing gloves so I tried it and it works so much easier than a little shovel. I use a small pail with a handle on it to pick up everything and transfer it to my big barrel. In the winter, I put the barrel outside my coop door for convenience and in the summer, the barrel is moved to the edge of the banking. You may choose just to keep the barrel outside the coop door for convenience year round.

We built our coop in 2010 and have always just added more shavings with the exception of cleaning out under the waterers where it gets wet (those shavings smell like ammonia in that spot when I do because they got soaking wet). I do some general wiping down of the walls and cleaning when necessary. I use DE (diatomacious earth) sprinkled on the roosts, nesting boxes and around the coop too.

That's my process. My coop never smells. Many times, I'll just plop on the floor to hang out with them if they are inside (siesta time or inclement weather).

Hope this helped.

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