litter, wire floor, what do you do?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by sandi, Aug 16, 2008.

  1. sandi

    sandi Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 11, 2008
    Sunnyvale, CA
    For our backyard, free-range-ish, flock (i.e., 2 or 3 hens), we have purchased the very basic Chick-N-Hutch. The one that seems to be available everywhere so you likely have seen it. It has a hardware cloth floor with a slide-out catch-tray underneath. It is clear that this design intends everything to fall through to the catch-tray.

    But, all the instructions for coops talk about putting litter down, so that the hens have a comfy walking surface, and can scratch their droppings into the mix. Do folks with the wire floor ignore that and let the girls walk on the wire? Or do you put some other tray inside to build a layer of litter?

    My husband suggested putting enough litter to reach from the tray, through the wire floor, and still have a couple of inches on top. I could do that, but there would be alot of litter that wasn't being stirred by the girls.

    this novice appreciates your advise!
  2. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Wire is very bad for their feet. Use a solid floor with litter.
  3. ChandlersChickens

    ChandlersChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 8, 2008
    Delphos, OH
    The one thing to keep in mind if you put that much litter in...will you be able to pull the catch tray out to clean it?
    I have the chick n hutch and find it very hard to pull out when there is a lot of litter in it.

    I use a box to put litter in...a short one like you find at grocery stores that hold cans. I found mine at the local grocery store. They were just going to throw them in the trash and it worked great for me.
  4. Colored Egg Farmer

    Colored Egg Farmer Chicken overload

    I have a wire floor and have never had any problems with it I just have areas for them to hold onto so there not on the wire at all times.
  5. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    My roosts in my coop are over wire which allows the poop through. Pine shavings are on the floor in the rest of the coop. I periodically add some shavings and FOOD GRADE DE (Diatomaceous Earth) until I have approx 6in. I clean my coop once a year. Once in awhile I throw some scratch on the pine shaving and let the chickens mix it up. They so a very good job. I have no problems with flies, stink and such. My pine shavings stay nice and dry easy to clean out. I put them in my compost pile. which every once in awhile I give a toss to keep it mixed up with the other stuff that goes in. sprinkle with water and let it cook. I move my coop and chicken yard about every 3 months approx, clean up the poop under the roost and it goes into the compost. I grow so much produce that I give most of it away. My soil is low in acid so I think the pine shavings are good for my soil.

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