Disposing of coop cleanings in The 'Burbs?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by warmheart, Oct 15, 2012.

  1. warmheart

    warmheart Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We just brought home 3 new, absolutely stunning, standard-sized hens! [​IMG](I'll bore you about them in another post[​IMG]) The 3-nestbox-coop has wood shavings as bedding. The hens range about the garden during the day, and snooze in the coop at night.

    Since we're close to our neighbors, what's the best way to dispose of the coop cleanings? My fiance wants to put them in the garden.[​IMG] I don't like that idea, because: 1.) I don't want to look outside to see a huge area (garden) covered in tan shavings, 2.) shavings will blow all over the lawn, and 3.) the odor over time would likely compound, treating the neighbors to a melange of chickeneqsue aromas.[​IMG]

    Would it work to have an outside waste bin with a liner and a periodic trip to the dump? Other ideas? Thank you for sharing your solutions with me. [​IMG] I have a lot to learn yet.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012
  2. PeepsAreForMe

    PeepsAreForMe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG] Now you need to attach some pictures of your stunning hens!!!

    I am no expert, but I do know that putting poop directly in your garden from the chicken's butt will burn your flowers and plants. You could buy a compost bin, the kind you turn. It doesn't smell as much as people think. And you only have 3 hens. I have 3 also, plus one rooster and we have an open compost bin that I toss their droppings and shavings in. It never smells.
     
  3. mandelyn

    mandelyn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pine bedding creates a lot of waste. It will eventually compound on the flower beds because of it being spread thin (no heat build up) and no other ingredients (grass clippings, leaves, etc) so the break down will be slow. Quite the odor could develop after a good rain.

    I put sand inside the coop. Super easy to clean. Can freshen it with "Sweat PDZ" stall freshener. Pine shavings go in the run, the birds love kicking it around, and any poo I miss during cleaning gets churned in and composted right there in the run. I overfilled the run with shavings and then left it. I haven't added any shavings in months, and I haven't emptied it out in over a year. It's nice! No stink, no matter how much it rains. When it was sand outside, it stunk after a rain.

    I have a 5 gallon bucket and a cat litter scoop. I grab any obvious poo daily and it goes in the bucket. Because of how our law reads, I have a garbage can handy with a bag in it. We have to contain waste in a sealed container. We have a compost pile, which is actually breaking down nicely and reducing in size instead of growing since we've switched to sand inside the coop.
     
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  4. barnaclebob

    barnaclebob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I second the composting recommendation. I also agree with the sand in the coop/pine shavings in the run. After a little over a month with three chickens the shavings can still hold a lot more poo before we change it out or add more. I also just toss the poo from the coop into the run.
     
  5. warmheart

    warmheart Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you so very much for the replies! I'll have to see if we can score an affordable composting bin. What a great idea! We haven't got a run, as the hens range in the fenced garden which is large for 3 hens. Sand in the coop is a new idea for me. Intriguing! Do you just scoop it like a catbox? (N00b alert! N00b alert! ;) I'm reading/researching as fast as I can [​IMG]) Do the hens lay eggs in the nestboxes with sand, or do those get shavings?
     
  6. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Compost!! Your chicken poo is AMAZING compost. (I actually original got chickens for eggs and poo because I love composting - odd but true) You can compost pine shavings if you want but they do take some extra composting care as they break down slowly. I use pine in my two nest boxes and compost that as it is not a lot of pine but I use sand on the coop floor - easy to clean and no waste and the great posts above state.

    I would compost first then put in your garden and by then it will just look like lovely dirt. You can make your own composter or buy one and just tuck it into the corner. If you keep it balanced it does not smell and is free, beautiful soil for your garden.

    You can also compost your egg shells and if you happen to farm mealworms, all of your mealworm waste and casings.
     
  7. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A lot of the fancy store-bought composters are a little expensive. I make mine out of 50 gallon barrels. People on craigslist sell them all the time and I can usually find them for like $20 delivered. You can sort of see it in this picture - it's the blue thing on the left. I drilled big holes and put it through a pole so I can spin it to help oxygenate. There are nicer looking systems but this was very cheap.


    [​IMG]
     
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  8. mickey328

    mickey328 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    An inexpensive alternative also is to use a large plastic trash can that has a lid. Drill quite a few holes about 3/8 inches all over the can...side and bottom. Layer your compostables in "green" and "brown". Water as necessary to keep it moist, but not wet, and keep the lid on so it doesn't get too soaked when it rains. Periodically, turn it on its side and roll it back and forth to mix it all up.
     
  9. Brookliner

    Brookliner Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use DE and PDZ on the floor of the coop with a thin layer of pine chips. The poopboards are a mix of PDZ, DE and sand. I poopscoop (like cat litter) the poopboards and stir the floor mix. I only remove the floor mix every couple of months as there is hardly any poop on it. The most poop 70% is on the poopboards which I sift out daily and compost. For 12 bantams and 12 chicks I have about at the most 2 inches in a five gallon bucket daily. The PDZ keeps it from smelling. There is no oder at all. My chicks are in a brooder with their hen 4x3.5 floorspace. I use the same mixture as on the poopboards about 2 inches deep and scoop it daily. They really like it.
     
  10. warmheart

    warmheart Chillin' With My Peeps

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    DE is diatomaceous earth? May I ask what PDZ is, please? Thank you fior sharing what's working for you!
     

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