how often clean brooder/change wood chips - compost daily?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by puebloyoga, Aug 11, 2011.

  1. puebloyoga

    puebloyoga Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 9, 2011

    I am wondering how often I should clean out my brooder of 6 chicks - I just put down pine chips. Also, how should I do it - should I completely compost out the wood chips every day, less/more often? Just take out the wet/dirty ones? Inquiring minds...


    new mama
  2. A.T. Hagan

    A.T. Hagan Don't Panic

    Aug 13, 2007
    North/Central Florida
    How often depends on how fast they muck it up and your tolerance for it. When it begins to stink or the shavings are generally discolored from the manure build up then you know it's time. If they get wet then clean out at least everything that is soaked because wet bedding is an invitation to coccidiosis.

    Once I clean the bedding out I spread it around whatever I think could use it at the time, but you could also put them in a compost pile. If they have a good manure buildup the ratio of shavings to manure ought to be pretty close to perfect for composting.
  3. puebloyoga

    puebloyoga Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 9, 2011
    thanx for the tips. i'll definitely try to intercept the smell factor to appease my husband who is just, shall we say, getting used to the adorable chicks.
    i'm also wondering how often other folks tend to change out the wood chips.


    new mama
  4. vsmenagerie

    vsmenagerie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 23, 2011
    I had mine on paper towels for the first 4 days or so, which I changed out 2x per day, or more if needed. With the shavings, Im thinking I'm going to do a deep litter method, and then put the whole lot in the compost once its started lol So far, no smell really but they are also only a week old. I may change my mind as they get bigger!
  5. juliaaa

    juliaaa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 15, 2011
    Syracuse, New York
    I have 3 chicks and change my shavings once a week or so. They do get outside time though, so it might be shorter time till you'd need to change yours.
  6. EliseB

    EliseB Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 19, 2011
    I changed my shavings out about once a week. I had 5 chicks in a 1.5' x 3' aquarium until they were about 4 weeks and then they HAD to go out to their coop - they were getting way to big!
  7. turbodog

    turbodog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2010
    Independence, La.
    Once a week and dumped em in the mulch pile.
  8. ChickDaze

    ChickDaze Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 1, 2011
    my group of 14 chicks over ran it so much i wanted to clean it out every day, but just once to three times a week will work. Also, i dumped it a round a crepe myrtle. it made it so much neater looking.
  9. CinnamonQueen12

    CinnamonQueen12 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 20, 2011
    I invested in a small kitty litter scooper at the lowest price I could find it. Came in very handy, used it for 4 broods. I spot-clean every morning and evening with it, looking around the surface for pieces of poop, and then I turn every thing over and look for more poop. Takes 5 mins. I completely clean out the brooder every week to every week and a half, but if it smells really bad, I'll clean it out sooner. The brooder is in my room, so I need to make sure the brooder is extra clean!
  10. lbartsch

    lbartsch Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 3, 2011
    I scooped the poop out with a sand shovel two or three times a day and changed the pine shavings completely at least once a week. When They got to about 4 or 5 weeks, I started changing it twice a week. I moved them out to the coop at about 6 weeks. Now I clean the coop in the morning and the run/yard in the afternoon. I use sand in the coop and their dustbath area and scoop that with a kitchen strainer. I have grass in the run and use a doggies pooper scooper on that and in the yard since I let them free range al day. Best of luck!

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