For those with SAND runs...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by WaddleWaddle, Jan 13, 2014.

  1. WaddleWaddle

    WaddleWaddle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 1, 2013
    Culpeper, VA
    How do your chickens forage for insects and such?

    I will be expanding my run with about 150-200 feet of fencing. Currently I have about 200 feet of fencing. I am also building a new coop (12'x16') currently I am using a modified shipping container for 11 hens and my flock will be increased by 22 hens in March. I currently have 3 muscovies and will be increasing my flock by 18 ducks. So there will be a total of 33 chickens and 21 ducks. Ducks and chickens will share a run but will have their own houses. I am very tempted to use sand for my run but am wondering how they will be able to forage for insects in sand. I will be landscaping in and around the run with insect attracting plants/bushes as well as having my veggie garden on the backside of my run. Currently I have a dirt run and use straw to help with drainage when it rains which gets expensive and the straw gets really nasty. There is a quarry 3 miles from my house and they give free materials to anyone in a five mile radius since their trucks are on the road so much as a courtesy we just pay the driver the delivery fee which is about $30 per dump truck load.
     
  2. jetdog

    jetdog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 18, 2013
    Massachusetts
    I love my sand not as big as your area, mine just catch whatever crawls in the run, I let them out for a while when I get home, they love to dust and scratch around all day, very easy to clean with a cat litter scoop but i can't see you doing that with such a big area.
     
  3. WaddleWaddle

    WaddleWaddle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 1, 2013
    Culpeper, VA
    Thank you. I did see where someone took a regular plastic pitch fork and neatly zip tied 1/4" hardware cloth over the pitch fork and basically made a giant kitty litter scoop. Genius!

    How do you all keep the sand from creeping out of your run? Do you have a kickboard that basically goes around the entire run to keep the sand in? If so does that effect your drainage?
     
  4. jetdog

    jetdog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 18, 2013
    Massachusetts
    I first put down welded wire then landscape fabric to keep the sand from disappearing into the ground then made a kickboard with 2x6 to keep the sand in, it hasn't affected the drainage at all, however the entire run is covered so it doesn't get to wet even in the worst of storms.
     
  5. Murphy212

    Murphy212 Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 5, 2013
    my run is 408 sq ft for 11 chickens, i used cedar fence slats as a border around the fencing to keep the sand in, propped in place like a kickboard and it is working great. I think the chickens are trying to dig to freedom because they scratch and dig all along the fence line catching bugs worms etc. Love the sand run. Mine is about 6-8 inches deep and I rake every few days to get the poop out.
    With all the rain we have had here this past year, can't imagine how bad that run would have been without the sand.
    Murphy
     

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