Deep liter dust.... What's the concern?

Chirpy

Balderdash
12 Years
May 24, 2007
3,788
24
221
Colorado
Inhaling dust (for both humans and animals) can cause respiratory issues. That's why, when you are cleaning out your coop, you should wear a mask so you don't inhale all the dust.
 

hatchaholic

Songster
11 Years
Jul 23, 2008
1,106
1
161
South Carolina
Quote:So true...I learned this the hard way. I cleaned out my coop last weekend and have been coughing terribly ever since. Feels like bronchitis. I'll definately have a mask next time!!
 

brandywine

Songster
11 Years
Jul 9, 2008
381
7
131
Western PA
Actually, feather dust is a respiratory health concern whether you use deep litter or not.

Maybe a little less of an issue with some deep litter systems than with systems that have you stirring it up a lot with weekly clean-outs.

Commercial poultry industry workers have, if I recall, truly alarming rates of respiratory disease, despite using respirators and usually very aggressive ventilation. Too many birds in too little space.
 

Chicabee19

Songster
11 Years
Aug 8, 2008
2,585
12
189
n/a
Would it help keep dust down to have a fan blowing out of one window of the coop? (not on cold days, of course)
 

patandchickens

Flock Mistress
12 Years
Apr 20, 2007
12,520
257
341
Ontario, Canada
Deep litter oughtn't be any dustier than non deep litter (tho obviously it is dustier than housing chickens on bare wire)... you don't START with the litter being deep, you just add more as required.

The usual knock against deep litter is *moisture*, as indeed it can be a bit damper than regular litter depending on how it's managed and what your ventilation is like... but damper litter is *less* dusty not more.

A fan blowing out the coop window is not going to do much of anything about dust. Either the coop is dusty or it's not, you know? However you do always need ventilation and it should be of a type not to let strong gusts of wind stir up the litter. Fan-operated ventilation is not generally necessary as long as you have a well designed system of 'normal', passive vent openings.

Cheers,

Pat
 

Chicabee19

Songster
11 Years
Aug 8, 2008
2,585
12
189
n/a
When composting to create heat, some moisture is required for growth of the necessary microbes and critters.

Moisture is wicked from the earth floor up into the litter in the appropriate amounts if it is stirred regularly.

The idea is to keep it going w/o it getting too wet or too dry.
 

vfem

Yoga...The Chicken Pose
11 Years
Aug 4, 2008
7,324
22
264
Fuquay Varina, NC
I was concerned about this 'dust' too. Someone brought me a bag of 'Aspen' Pet bedding. It says its made of hardwood and processing virtually eliminates any dust and it has NO aroma from oils. NOW, my question is, is this ok to put in the coop. I don't know if its cedar, it doesn't smell like anything... is this ok to use? I didn't pay for it, so I don't want to waste it.
 

okcin06

In the Brooder
11 Years
Oct 4, 2008
11
0
21
With questions about dust and all, I have a question to add to this, it that is alright. We are attending the Chickenstock in our state in about 2 - 3 weeks. We might get our first chicks there. We know the coop we want to build (we think), and we are thinking of using some pine straw for litter and using the deep liter system. We have plenty of pine straw on our property. Would there be any concerns with using it exclusively? Should we add something else to the bedding?
 

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