Flooded run...what do to with the wet shavings?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by javaferret, Nov 26, 2016.

  1. javaferret

    javaferret Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 23, 2015
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    Hi all, been reading all the past flooded posts, and getting good ideas on how to prevent future flooding, but still unsure what to do with the immediate problem of all the wet shavings in the run.

    The run is covered 20x8 area on dirt with a deep litter floor with coarse pine shavings until the 3 inches of water that became the new run floor this morning. We added dirt to the run to raise it up and working on rerouting the water.

    What should we do with the already wet material? Cover it with dirt then add new shavings? Shovel out all the wet muck and add more dirt and shavings? Will the soaked shavings mold or dry out and continue its composting circle of life?

    Any fellow soaked chicken owners pls give some advice, I am just not sure what is the best way to deal with this mess, I have never lived in such a rainy climate. Moved from SoCal last year to Oregon (South of Salem). Talk about total opposites.

    Anyway, thanks for any input!
     
  2. PluckyJen

    PluckyJen Out Of The Brooder

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    Im having the same problem here in South Africa. Plenty flooding and my beautiful cosy coop gotten soaked. I found I have to completely remove all the pine shavings as it does mould. We get mosquitos hanging around too if I leave it for a day. Its a pain in the bottom but I shovel it all up every time and have to take it to a local refuse site. im trying to combat the flooding in our garden with additional drainage too but figured there's only so much I can do. My girls sleep inside at night now as im too scared we get flash floods again. I too wonder if the wet sawdust could work for composting if ur on a farm etc.. Hope one of the other peeps have some info.
     
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    It sounds like you are on the right track, fill it with dirt, especially clay dirt, to build it up so water doesn’t run in. That’s what I did with my coop before I put in any bedding, then put in a swale on the uphill side to help divert water from the run. If you fill it with sand or any organic material and it is lower than the surrounding area, it will continue getting wet. But not everyone has access to good clay dirt without spending a lot of money. Good luck with that.

    I think you will be OK just putting the dirt in over the bedding. If you bury it, it will eventually rot, which is the same thing as composting. It will be isolated down in there so when it molds (rots, composts, whichever work you want to use) it will be isolated from the chickens. It will compact greatly so fill the coop/run deeper than the minimum you think you need to.

    I think practically anyone that has chickens really should make their own compost. You have all the raw ingredients, chicken manure for the nitrogen and shavings for the carbon. Compost is black gold in vegetable gardens, landscaping beds, or just to fill holes in your yard to level it. Taking the wet bedding out before you fill it with dirt and composting it isn’t a bad idea either.

    If your coop or run are in a low spot where water runs toward it, it doesn’t matter what bedding material you put in it to soak up the water. The water can’t drain anywhere so it will stay soaked unless you change it out. That’s simple physics. The best solution is to build it initially where water drains from it, not to it, but some people don’t have that option. You sometimes have to be creative to keep the water out.

    When the weather sets in wet a run of any size is going to get wet, rain water blows in from the side and you just can’t do much about that unless you have a fairly small run so you can cover the top and the sides. I don’t always have “Ideal” conditions either, I sometimes have conditions “I deal” with. It can get frustrating.
     
  4. javaferret

    javaferret Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 23, 2015
    Oregon
    Thanks for the input, guess on the plus side the soil I have is more clay than anything else, and it is sitting in a huge pile down by the compost piles (used a bobcat this fall to scoop out the area around the coop to prevent all this flooding...guess we failed).

    Just happy this happened over the holidays so I have time to work this. I will never doubt the power of the rain of the NW Coast again.


    PluckyJen- So sorry about your coop! I am guessing the temps are warmer down there this time of year? Only thing saving me from mosquitos is that its quite chilly this time of year.
     
  5. PluckyJen

    PluckyJen Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 22, 2016
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    I think ill give composting a shot too [​IMG]. Oh yes its summer in full swing here. Upper 30c's this week. Time to freeze some watermelon for my girls.
     

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