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Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Schroeder, Jan 3, 2009.
Any reason to keep chickens away from the compost bins?
Just keep it where they can't kick everything out! I forgot to put the wall back up on mine and they had everything scratched out in less than 2 days.
If you put shavings and there is feed that they've dumped on the coop floor, they shouldn't be in there. The feed will mold in the weather and they can get sour crop from eating that. One of my hens died because of this (the pile was fenced but had gotten so big, they could reach through the fence and eat)
My birds free range and one of the areas they like to check out every now and then is the compost pile. I don't think there is a problem with it... they actually turn the soil and haven't messed the pile up. If they were eating all the worms, then that would be a different story, but the worms are usually at the very bottom where it is damper.
My chickens love to scratch out the stuff from the bottom of the compost - and I thought that finding and eating worms or other compost bugs was a good thing. In a recent Backyard Poultry magazine there was an article about a compost place that was tended to by flocks of chickens who got all their nutrition from the bugs and other stuff from the compost piles.
I compost in a pile, not a bin at all. Chickens love to scratch through there, especially after I go out with the "magic bucket" full of kitchen scraps. After doing some reading, I started a "worm bin" for scraps that chickens shouldn't have like potato peels and anything really spoiled. I'll add to that their old wet spilled food after reading specked hen's post..thanks for that warning.
We have a large greenhouse approx 25 x 48 '. The chicken run is right next to the greenhouse. I made a small tunnel that goes in the greenhouse. We bring all our horse manure in during the winter and dump it in piles. They love it, They spread it through the whole greenhouse. They spend the whole day in there digging it up. Roto tilling should be easy this spring.
Quote:Yeah... because the girls do all the work! I can't believe how much dirt they can move in a single day.
THe other day I caught them taking a keen interest in the eggshells that I threw in there. That reminded me that there was real no benefit to them having access to it.