Discouraged by poop

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Fulton Heights, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. Fulton Heights

    Fulton Heights New Egg

    Feb 27, 2012
    I was sold on keeping a few hens in a Catawba chicken tractor. What has pulled the plug on things is the poop. Specifically, I have a small yard and even moving the tractor around daily would expose poop to the dog, kids, and cats who play in the yard and then come in the house.

    Keeping poop shoes by the door is one solution I read here, but what about the dog or worse, the cats who also jump on countertops and tables when they're in the house? I am really discouraged by this. My original plans were to put coop poop in the compost and let the backyard poop fall where it may. Would a stationary coop and run be the answer? How do you manage poop and a healthy home?
  2. ChaoticCritters

    ChaoticCritters Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 14, 2012
    My chickens free range, they tend to wander around the immediate 15 acres, so I never really see poop anywhere except in the coop. But since we also have a dog, cows, goats, horses and pigs.... well, there's plenty of somebody's poop out there.

    All shoes are removed in the front entry which is tiled and easily scrubbed/disinfected. There's a box of baby wipes at the front and back doors, the dog gets his feet wiped off when coming in. I absolutely do not allow cats simply because they jump up on tables and counters and even if we didn't have farm animals, walking through a litter box and then going in my kitchen? YUCK!!!
  3. Glasshen

    Glasshen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 13, 2012
    La Fayette, NY
    A lot of the chicken poop happens at night. I just converted my coop to the poop board type that is discussed on it's own threat...basically a waist high shelf with a lip to hold sand and SweetPDZ, a horse stall refresher. A bit above the shelf a perch is centered. The chickens roost on the perch at night and their poop is collected on the sand/PDZ and I scoop it up each morning and take it to compost. Very quick and easy and takes away a lot of smell. I do have special shoes or boots to wear when doing chicken chores. I also use the spring rake in the fenced area of their pen. The grass in the pen is coming in greener than the rest of the yard! The girls do free range, so there is some random fertilization taking place, but I find it to be manageable. Good luck.
  4. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

    Jan 27, 2007
    How small a yard, how few chickens? A postage stamp size area with a hundred meat birds would be an issue. A permanent coop/run would limit poop spread and would make trans. to compost pile easier, insects easier to control, etc.. However, taking shoes off at door is useful, good hand washing is ALWAYS excellent. Degree of protection is relative (humans are most dangerous disease vectors). Where does one draw the line in this game? Smeared chicken poop on kitchen floor from kid's sneakers? Dog licking butt and then licking kids? Each of us assess the `threat' differently. I feel safer scooping poop from the coops than I do having to enter Walmart with all those human vectors (poultry rate mud boots by the back door).

    A few hens will not appreciably contribute to an increase in overall risk (or mess), IMHO.
  5. CSWolffe

    CSWolffe Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 2, 2011
    Salt Lake City
    I have three hens(adding two more this sprin once they are out of the brooder), who range about our tiny little .19 acre lot. Yes, less than a fifth of an acre. I have an 18 sq ft coop with an attached 96 sq ft run. I compost the sweepings from the coop and run, and my girls get a few hours every evening out of the run to run rampant and dig up my flowers. They poop everywhere. I don't worry about it because I have so few chickens, and because they are out for such a short time. Cats, dogs, kids, myself and my wife, yes we all track through it from time to time. I don't worry about it much. I think we try to be far to sterile, we don't expose our children to enough dirt and germs. I keep my cooking surfaces washed and clean, so there really is no chance of contamination from cat paws. As for the floor, well, floors get dirty and if my kids get sick from licking the floor, I think I have bigger problems than salmonella. Besides, think about all the wild birds who poop all over the place.
    A little bit of poop on your shoes won't make for an unhealthy home.
    2 people like this.
  6. Aschenfire

    Aschenfire Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2012
    I agree with CSWolffe. I have been reading a LOT of posts lately about (possibly new) chicken owners who are bothered by noise (chickens make noise, they don't have "indoor voices") and poop... or dirt. Perhaps it's the new "urban chicken" thing where folks who have lived in the city all their lives are now getting little backyard flocks, and they don't expect poop or death or dirt or noise. BUT having grown up playing in pastures, seeing animals born, animals die, romping through prolly all sorts of dirt, poop and other disgusting things... I can say that a little chicken crap is not going to kill anyone. Take shoes off at the door, wash your hands, and enjoy the birds.
    5 people like this.
  7. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 31, 2008
    Grifton NC
    I'd worry more about the cats in the house than the chickens in the yard:


  8. Ole rooster

    Ole rooster Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 25, 2011
    Milner, Georgia
    To control poop, pick it up every day. That really the only way.
  9. Apyl

    Apyl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 5, 2012
    Necedah, Wi
    Dont use a tractor if you dont want poop around the yard. I would do a stationary coop w/ a run. But in reality they are animals and there is going to be poop, noise, mess, and yes the chicks will poop on you at some point. Its just all part of being a chicken owner.
  10. ConservativeRed

    ConservativeRed New Egg

    Mar 17, 2012
    Marsing. Idaho
    Or hose it into your lawn. Great fertilizer and for a few chickens it isn't that much anyway.

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