How do we feel about pea gravel in the run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Danimalism, Sep 8, 2016.

  1. Danimalism

    Danimalism Hatching

    Mar 18, 2015
    I'm thinking of doing a few inches of pea gravel in my run, with a drain that goes out into a dry creek/messy garden area (we never touch this space and it's a good distance from the coop- about 25ft). My dream is to spray it weekly so the poops disintegrate and drain out. Right now, my ladies have just hard clay and after 3 winters, they hate it and so do I (I live in the PNW so it gets REAL wet).

    My concern is mainly their comfort. Will pea gravel be okay? They live in the coop now so I'm also concerned about them being able to scratch around. I'd like to avoid sand since it requires removal and replacement, I'm looking for as easy/lazy as possible.

  2. I have pea gravel mixed with sand in my coop. I've never had any chickens get foot issues like bumblefoot from it. They can still scratch around in it but they will need a dirt bath. The only downside is I think a all sand run would be easier to clean. Because you just have to fork it out and the dirt falls through the pick. But gravel get stuck so I end up throwing away the gravel along with the poop. But just spraying it out sounds like a good idea. It might work since you have a drain going out of the run. Since you get alot of rain it will be awesome for drainage, sand not so much. Hope this helps and good luck :)
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2016
  3. I use sand...I rake it and then till it...It has never been replaced out in my run...I use sand in my coop also...I use a kitty litter scoop to sift out the poop and a dropping board under my roost...Once a year I clear out half the sand in the coop and replace with fresh...Keeps down stink and moisture in the coop...I live on 7 acres so the dirty sand gets placed under my large spruce trees...

    Only what works for me....
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2016
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Yeah, you're dreaming.
    I suppose it's possible but highly improbable, but it would take tons of water and perfect slope to drain to actually get all the poop out. What was left would stink badly.

    Best bet is build up a functional deep litter in the run.
    Here's a great description of contents and how to manage organic 'bedding' in a run or coop...and there's a great video of what it looks like.
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by