How to clean my sand flooring in the run area without dumping out all that sand? Sifter ideas?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by nfitzgeraldRN, Jul 27, 2013.

  1. nfitzgeraldRN

    nfitzgeraldRN In the Brooder

    Apr 23, 2013
    Roggen Colorado

    I have sand in the floor of my run. Where I live there is so much dirt that things get way too muddy to not use sand. I love being able to rake all the droppings into an area and clean it up but have been struggling with how to "sift" the poop and feathers out and leave the sand. Any ideas? Right now I use a kitty litter scoop but it takes FOREVER!

  2. Willowpark4

    Willowpark4 In the Brooder

    Oct 5, 2011
    Hawkes Bay - NZ
    I can understand that.
    Did you lay concrete underneath and sand on top or just sand on top of the dirt? If Its really a matter of time saving for you - then do you really want to sift the solids by hand/sieve?
    I've heard some have used gravel in the bases but it all comes down to how easy it is to upkeep? - Concrete the easiest i think. Just hose it down and collect solids for compost - prior etc.
    Also do the girls dig in the run much when they are in it? This will mean they could go down to dirt sooner or later and it will mix. Back to "square one"?
    If you only have a few girls then it could be feasible to have the cage up off the ground with netting/strong Mesh for the floor? Self filtering and rack under every so often?
  3. nfitzgeraldRN

    nfitzgeraldRN In the Brooder

    Apr 23, 2013
    Roggen Colorado
    Just dirt underneath, so our plan is to add a little more sand every so often to keep it full. We do have chicken wire dug under the dirt, but for the sole purpose of keeping digging critters out. I think my husband is going to try to build me a good sized sifter to keep the poo out and sand in, but wanted to check with everyone else.

    Thanks for the reply!
  4. aldarita

    aldarita Songster

    Aug 2, 2012
    Brenham TX
    I also have sand in my run and coops. I added it last year since I found out it was very easy to clean. I went to homedepot and bought one of those dusters with a wooden handle and a broom. My husband cut the center of the duster and stapled a piece of 1/4 inch hardware cloth so everyday I sweep the poop into the duster with the broom and shake it so the extra sand gets sifted out. Then I throw the poop into a bucket and when I am finished I take the "poop bucket" to the dump pile and let it compost. I really like this system because it keeps the flies away and it is much much healthier for the chickens. I don't know how many chickens you have (I have 29) it takes some time to go thru the run and coops but since I do it every day it is easier and faster.
  5. Percheron chick

    Percheron chick Crowing

    Apr 12, 2013
    Boulder, Colorado
    For a quick and dirty cleaning, I use a horse poop fork. You get the feathers and some of the poop. They make a mini poop fork for dogs just like the horse one. The tines are closer together 5/16" instead of 9/16". They are overpriced but it would pay for itself compared to the way you are doing it.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2013
  6. shannybell

    shannybell Chirping

    Jul 9, 2012
    Wilsonville, AL
    I have a sand floor in my coop and I love being able to keep it so clean. I use a flat horse stall pick which I added small hardware cloth to the entire back side with cable ties. Then I use a normal kitty litter scooper. Every morning , I use the kitty litter scooper to rake the top of the sand onto the larger horse pick, pick it up and sift, then dump in the bucket. I can do my whole coop in about 10 mins and leaves the floor clean. Now if I can just teach them not to poop on the wall behind the roost lol!
  7. baldwin5285

    baldwin5285 In the Brooder

    Jul 27, 2013
    When my ducks have ducklings i was wondering if i could put sand in by the ducklings because they make a big mess with water and i thought the would be better then pine shavings
  8. nfitzgeraldRN

    nfitzgeraldRN In the Brooder

    Apr 23, 2013
    Roggen Colorado
    Great idea! Sounds easy enough. I will try that approach!

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