Do I even need bedding in my coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by sunshine ducky, Jan 25, 2017.

  1. sunshine ducky

    sunshine ducky Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 7, 2012
    Hey everyone, So I have a small coop with two hens in it. And I was thinking to add a wood floor at the bottom of it and attach a tarp over the wood. So every week I could take the peice of wood out (keep In mind there is a tarp attached to it) and just hose it down and clean it. This wood floor I'm thinking of is removable so I'm sort of cleaning it like a hutch. The reason I don't want bedding is that it just doesn't work out for me. So with this idea in mind, do you think it will work? Thanks!

    Ps: here is an image of my coop
  2. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    It will be a stinky mess and they will be walking in their poop all week. What you have there doesn't need a floor at all, and can actually be more like a chicken tractor and you just move it to a fresh spot. Though you will want to take care to protect them from digging predators. Once a fox catches on to that, they will be gone in an instant.
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2017
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    I would not call that a coop, especially in your climate.
    More like a day pen...maybe.
    It is not secure from predators at all, except hawks.

    Agrees with SHK's assessment of tarped wood.
  4. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    Hey there sunshine ducky

    I can’t quite picture what you mean in the enclosure you currently have.

    However, if it helps, we do have a removable, slatted timber floor in our raised coop [no tarp] which works well in our climate where the gals only really go into the coop to lay and roost, the rest of the time is spent wandering around the garden.

    Each morning I simply sweep up the overnight poops under the roost and give the floor a wipe over and once a week, completely remove the floor and wash it with hot soapy water and dry in the sun:

  5. ChickenMammX4

    ChickenMammX4 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 17, 2015
    SW Ohio

    Ditto that!
  6. Howard E

    Howard E Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 18, 2016
    To the OP, when you say "bedding doesn't work out for me", what does that mean? Are you moving this often to new ground so don't want to leave a bedding patch behind? Or what?
  7. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013
    I would think that without bedding you could run into leg issues with the chickens walking on a tarp-covered wood floor...sounds slippery.
  8. IdyllwildAcres

    IdyllwildAcres Overrun With Chickens

    Why not use bedding? What do you mean it does not work out for you?

  9. TalkALittle

    TalkALittle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 15, 2014

    If this is your permanent coop I imagine that poop management is the least of your problems. I don't see it holding up to Maine weather or predators.

    If poop is building up just move the pen to a new spot often.

    If you don't have enough room or want to keep the pen in one spot then you have some options:

    Let them run on dirt and just periodically scrape the poop up and turn the soil over. In guessing this is what you do now and you are looking for something different.

    Construct a frame of lumber to hold in organic material and set the pen on it. A mix of shavings, dried leaves, grass clippings, chopped straw or hay works well to mix with and cover the poop and help it compost down.

    Install a poop tray to catch the poop they produce when on the roost at night and remove it. An elevated tray (or hammock) will prevent them from walking in it and not reduce usable space in the run. Unfortunately, it looks like you don't have a ton of height in that pen so this might not be an option.

    Honestly though, as long as you're making changes, I'd suggest some upgrades that will make it more predator and weather proof. The chicken wire keeps your birds in but pretty much any predator can rip through it.

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