dumb question about compost pile and chickens!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by fordguy, Jan 22, 2010.

  1. fordguy

    fordguy In the Brooder

    Dec 6, 2007
    My chickens keep removing my compost pile and spreading it all around! So do I have tomove my compost out of the chicken enclosure? it was so handy to shovel the coop out into the pile....thanks in advance.
  2. Teach97

    Teach97 Bantam Addict

    Nov 12, 2008
    Hooker, OK
    if you don't want it moved by your chickebns...yes you have to move it
  3. HennyJenny

    HennyJenny Songster

    Dec 26, 2009
    Bennington, NE
    It has been my experience - that given access to any pile or container of any kind of dirt or debris - 99.99999% of chicken will choose to help in the redistribution of the pile. Sometimes for no apparent reason other than their own entertainment. Not only does this include compost piles but flower pots, flower beds, vegetable gardens, baskets of laundry by the clothesline, bags of garbage etc etc etc.
  4. momof2monkeys

    momof2monkeys In the Brooder

    Aug 31, 2009
    near Austin
    My chickens are so spoiled! They love it when I turn my compost because I dig up all the yummy bugs for them. They eat the grubs and worms right off the end of my pitch fork as if I'm spoon feeding them! Sometimes they get in the way, but I love them anyway. They eat the seeds and scraps and help break down my pile so I let them enjoy![​IMG]
  5. the chickens are helping turn the compost pile and grind the dirt clumps and and droppings into the mix,,, all you gotta do is pile it back up once a week after they flatten it ... we encourang them to till the garden befor we plant ,,,, its funny to see the pure white silkie digging in dirt but staying clean and pure white
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2010
  6. Ibicella

    Ibicella Songster

    Nov 13, 2009
    Everett, WA
    I wouldn't. Your chickies are doing a bunch of the work for you!

    However, if you are finding your compost isn't getting enough time to heat up and break down, I would build a pen for it that would allow me to block the chickens until it's time for it to be turned, then open it and let them have at it!

    Then you can just rake it up. [​IMG]
  7. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Yeah, if you want it to heat up hot, it takes a substantial depth of material (not the same amount spread across the whole run 2" thick [​IMG]) and the only way I know of to ensure that is to put it in a container and keep the chickens from kicking it out.

    However, if heating the compost is not a big priority -- and realistically, less than 100% of the pile will be "adequately" heated to kill things in it, even if you turn the pile several times, so I am not sure how big a priority it usually *needs* to be -- then there is nothing at all wrong with letting the chickens kick things all over. Shovel it out of the run periodically and either use it on not-overly-N-sensitive crops or let it age another month or two, and you've got some great stuff for your soil [​IMG]

    Good luck, have fun,


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