Chicken run- best material for floor that's proven????

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by winekntrychicks, Feb 20, 2009.

  1. turbodog

    turbodog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2010
    Independence, La.
    Quote:Mine is pea gravel too. Would making a sandy area be good for them to have dust baths? Or is that unnecessary?
  2. Backyard_Chicken_rancher

    Backyard_Chicken_rancher Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sand with a gravel underlayment for drainage always works the best....The best part of all it is easy to clean with just a cat litter scoop duct tape to a short pole (broom stick works for this).
  3. FreedomLover

    FreedomLover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 27, 2010
    I've finally convinced my DH to go with a cement floor for the coop when we build. [​IMG]

    Although we haven't yet decided on a final location, we've discussed a couple of places to put it and *think* we may have that hammered out.
  4. Texasboy4ever

    Texasboy4ever Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 10, 2009
    I use pine shavings for my run. I started with sand but when it rains with all the water and poop it really gets messy. Started put the shavings down and its alot cleaner and dosen't smell I will add to it if it nees it But only need to clean about every 6 months and put it on the garden. My coop and run is sandy dirt under the shavings and they always find a way to get to the dirt to dust off
  5. B'villechicken

    B'villechicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 19, 2008
    Syracuse NY Area
    I use a mix of sand and gravel that they sell around here as driveway mix. Mine is called "1/2 minus". That is, 1/2 inch stone and less including course sand. The chickens do well on it and are able to dig & bathe if they want. No mud, but remember that the chickens trampling & pooping on it all day will compact the surface. I have an electric mini tiller that I use periodically to till up the stone mix to refresh the surface. I will eventually have to shovel it out and renew it in a few years I guess.

  6. thechickonthehill

    thechickonthehill Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 13, 2009
    Sadieville, KY
    I use several inches of shavings in my coop, which has a woodenfloor. In my run I have a base of what is called around here "Class I" sand which looks like a mix of finely crushed stone and sand. Over the Class I in the pen is several inches of shavings. I have Cochins, Brahmas and Faverolles and even their feathered feet stay nice and clean. I have developed a system now where, when I need to clean the coop out (about every 3 months) I simply pitch the shavings out the door into the pen and spread them around. Then add fresh shavings to the coop. Originally I planned to move the shavings from the pen to the compost heap or garden whenever they got too deep; however, I have found that the shavings are breaking down much quicker than I expected and I assume are getting scratched into the sand layer. At any rate, I have yet to have to remove any of the shavings from the pen and I have had no problems with mud or the shavings getting stinky and I've been doing this for the last 8 months.
  7. Chieftain

    Chieftain Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 21, 2009
    Quote:Mine is pea gravel too. Would making a sandy area be good for them to have dust baths? Or is that unnecessary?

    I'll let my chooks tell you the answer to that question....


    When I was getting ready to open the run, I sprinkled a quart container full of Feed Grade DE over the sand on that end, under the coop, and they go right for ir as soon as the sun hits it. The DE gets on their sking and feathers and helps keep them dry and clean, and DE is so fine it will dessicate any mites and/or bird lice they may pick up.

    They are out there now stirring up the dust and basking in the sun. Even with our windy and rainy days here in the Pacifist Northwest, the overhang on my run roof keeps the sand perfectly dry. They are all out there every day like this, so yes, a dustbath area is good for them and very, very necessary.

  8. Luteba

    Luteba New Egg

    Jan 30, 2010
    I have a newly constructed urban bantam tractor, and I'm wondering whether it needs a floor at all (for the roofed shelter/house section, not the run)? I'm in NZ, so less predators to worry about I think (just rats maybe; cats don't dig).

    Last edited: Mar 21, 2010
  9. claireree

    claireree Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 9, 2010
    I live in Spain and my chicken pen is on my roof terrace on a concrete base. They are currently on straw but after reading through all this I am going to lay some sand and dirt down in their pen tomorrow, then hopefully I will have some happy hens.
  10. Egg Rookie 2010

    Egg Rookie 2010 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 21, 2010
    North Idaho
    I dont mean to be stupid about coop and run just got started yesterday, babies arrive on Feb 2. So when they are finally loose in the coop and run you can see a small perimeter is concrete and then there is lots of grass which I am assuming they will ruin at the speed of light correct? So then when thats gone I should throw out s bunch of sand or pine shaving....I still havent figured out how you get poo off of pine shavings. Seems like it would stick and drop through onto the floor when they scratch. Rookie me. I AM putting a poop board under the roosts. That should be a no brainer.
    I also considered making a opo door on opposite sides and putting a run that is on three sides of the coop and splitting it so they can only get to half at a time and let them go one month on one side and one month on the other. Do you think that would allow for the grass to recover a bit? Cant free range...tons of dogs and hawks....all the guinnea hens next door lost thier babies to hawks and the coyotes are getting the big birds.

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