I have six hens that cannot free range as planned because of constant predators. I thought the fact I lived in the city and had a six foot privacy fence that it would be feasible, but so far, feral cats, possums, owls and now hawks are constantly visiting the back yard. The run is 6 x 12 and is covered. We plan to add at least another 6' x 6' area next year since it looks like the predators are not going away. I tried sand, but hated it. The chickens didn't like it, sand got everywhere, they wouldn't eat food that got on the ground and one kept eating it to the point she got sick twice. When it rained, water would get in through the sides of the run and it these edges reeked until it dried out. Since we have a lot of rain and humidity in this area, it wouldn't dry out for days. It got so nasty that I scrapped it all out, sprinkled the run with a layer of lime and added some fine shavings to help draw up the moisture. Throughout the spring and summer, I left it with just dirt and would throw out a flake of straw or some shavings. I would rake this up weekly and start fresh. Unfortunately, they have created some craters in the hard clay and I would like to add more dirt but don't know how without possibly introducing dangerous elements like coccidiosis to the flock. So I started wondering, could I just keep adding more and more bedding and leaves to the run without raking them out? Eventually, this could break down and become composted dirt which would fix my crater issues. And I could "harvest" some for the garden. Is this safe to do or will it be unsafe or unsanitary as it breaks down?