Ice in chicken run

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by JRsMom, Dec 13, 2014.

  1. JRsMom

    JRsMom Out Of The Brooder

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    After the snow and freezing rain this week, our run is covered by a sheet of ice. We are having warmer weather this weekend, and I am wondering if there is anything I can put on the ice to help Mother Nature get rid of it.
     
  2. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

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    I throw a thick layer of hay over iced ground just to keep the chickens from having to walk on a freezing surface. Works well for me but I live in the south and only get occasional ice in the chicken area.
     
  3. JRsMom

    JRsMom Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 14, 2012
    Thanks for responding, we did that last year, but the hay acts as an insulator here, and we still had ice in May in front of the coop. We are planning to go out and try to break it up this afternoon, highs are supposed to be in the mid 40's by then. Just wondering if there is anything we could put on it to help it break up easier. I know salt is out of the question.
     
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    That’s an interesting question. Anything you put on it is likely to insulate it.

    I don’t know how big a problem having ice in the run really is. Just like the wild birds, my chickens have no issues standing on ice or snow once they get up the nerve to go stand on it. I’ve had chickens wade through 9” of snow to go forage, but it took them two or three days to work up the nerve to try it. If it is ice at least it is not muddy. But back to your question.

    I’d consider trying to us solar energy to melt it if the sun hits it. If you break it enough to expose dark soil, that will heat up enough to form an area of melting. So instead of trying to remove it all, just break holes in it to expose the dirt. You should see significant melting around those holes fairly soon if the sun hits it.

    Another thought is to make the ice dirty. If you can make it dark it will absorb a lot of heat from sunshine. So maybe put enough muddy water on it to make it darker without insulating it. I can’t come up with anything other than mud or dirt.
     
  5. JRsMom

    JRsMom Out Of The Brooder

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    Yes, the girls don't seem to mind it, this is more for the human care givers, the ground is slightly sloped and it can get pretty scary trying to walk on it. I like the idea of putting dirt on it.
     
  6. RonP

    RonP Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm not sure if it is readily available, but sand would work better than dirt for traction.
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Ditto on the sand....I buy it in bags to spread on icy surfaces around my place....the coarser the better.
     
  8. JRsMom

    JRsMom Out Of The Brooder

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    your right, sand is a good idea, I don't know why I didn't think of it !
     
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Sometimes you need an extra head or two...that's what forums are for! [​IMG]
     
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