How to clean up the run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by LivingFate, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. LivingFate

    LivingFate In the Brooder

    May 18, 2008
    I'm halfway done with the coop- how do I clean the run? I live in MA. The run is dirt, theres some plants growing there now as well....or weeds... not sure [​IMG] The part where I want to expand the run to used to be a garden many moons ago I guess. It now has plants, weeds, and other green thing I have no clue- may be onions? Strawberries? AND ontop of the current run there are grape vines- do I need to do anything to those so cut down on bug issues? Thanks

    Oh a question not related- Can chickens stay out in the rain? I have a make shift pen for now outdoors that I would like to bring the chicks out but the weathers so crappy lately, I don't want to have to run back outdoors in 20 mins because of a quick rain storm.. No I'm not lazy I have 3 dc under 4yrs old to tend to-just limited time...:eek: Thanks:)
  2. flakey chick

    flakey chick Songster

    May 3, 2007
    As long as you don't have any poisonous plants in the run, you don't have to worry about digging the rest out. Your chickens will destroy all plant life in their run in surprisingly little time.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2008
  3. CoyoteMagic

    CoyoteMagic RIP ?-2014

    My chickens love the rain, but I wouldn't leave chicks out in it. Depending on how young they are they can quickly catch a chill and die. My "chicks" are 16 weeks old and have been outside since they were 6 weeks.

    Just be sure if you do leave them out in the rain that they have some kind of cover they can get under.

    Don't worry about the plants. The chickens will do away with everything green in their run. Trust me! I have found that chickens are smarter than we think. They avoid the poisonous plants on their own.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2008
  4. dixygirl

    dixygirl Songster

    May 14, 2008
    With regard to the rain, you don't have any shelter for them to run into? Animal cruelty people require that all animals have at least some kind of place to escape from the elements (a box with a roof), food and water. Often they require them to be fenced in too and living in clean conditions.

    If you want to pull weeds and plant something nice that would be nice. The garlic or onion is good for keeping flys away and also helps their immune system if they eat them. The strawberries and grapes will give them something else natural to eat.

    You can clean otherwise with a rake, a kitty scooper, a broom even if you don't have any of the others. Good luck squeezing in some cleaning between caring for the kiddies [​IMG]

    (edited to add the word grapes)
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2008
  5. LivingFate

    LivingFate In the Brooder

    May 18, 2008
    Quote:The make shift pen is a huge childs play yard/gate thing. My chicks are about 7 wks old. I only bring them out during nice days while I'm still finishing the coop. I tied a tarp over part of it to give them some shade, and they have there food and water out there as well. We've had such sudden t-storms lately I haven't brought them out for fear they would get sick. Theres no animal cruelty issue here don't worry. There well taken care of. Anything that may not be done is out of me being new to chickens and not knowing, but intentional cruelity is not an issue.

    Do I need to treat the dirt with anything incase there any bugs, lice? I don't know what can grow in chicken runs....
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2008
  6. Bird Hearder

    Bird Hearder Songster

    Apr 10, 2008
    Salisbury, Md.
    to the best of my knowledge you Can't put anything down for the bugs. the chickens will scratch and peck at the stuff that could kill them, It's Poison!!
    Besides the chickens will eat the Bug's and Lick their Beaks, YUM YUM
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2008
  7. BayCityBabe

    BayCityBabe Songster

    May 1, 2008
    DE is good for mites and such. My 6 week olds have already created a dust bath area in their run, which I sprinkle with DE.
    My question to everyone is: How does one clean up poo in the run? I don't want to rake too hard; the grass (that is remaining) is just hanging in there. I'd like to get more birds, but I can imagine that the poop will just be a nasty mess.
  8. LivingFate

    LivingFate In the Brooder

    May 18, 2008
    Ok. Wasn't sure if I needed to clean out the run since its old and I can only imagine whats been there. I'll put down some DE. Thanks

    If I put down garden lime- do I need to mix it in with the dirt or just leave it on the top like the DE?
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2008
  9. Iowamom

    Iowamom In the Brooder

    Jun 19, 2008
    Carlisle, Iowa
    Quote:I have been wondering about that myself. There is so much about keeping the coop clean, but what about the run??[​IMG]
  10. Dawn419

    Dawn419 Lost in the Woods

    Apr 16, 2007
    Evening Shade, AR
    I try and dust our runs weekly with food grade DE to dry up the pooh. Then come back a day or 3 later and broom (only used for the chickens) up the droppings and add them to our compost pile.

    The run is just red clay now, no plants or grass since last summer so it's pretty easy to just sweep the broom over the dirtiest areas and scoop them up in an old dust pan (only used for the chickens).

    Hope this helps!


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