1. justuschickens59

    justuschickens59 VA Royal Blues

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    Apr 2, 2009
    Virginia
    What can I do with my runs? The grass has been long since gone and when it rains, the runs turn to mud. I put leaves in during fall and that helped during the winter, but now that spring is here and rain, it is a mess.

    Any ideas?
     
  2. Chickenhatcher89

    Chickenhatcher89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 2, 2008
    Lawrenceburg, TN
    I am having the same trouble. Everytime it rains the runs turn into horrible messes. I have tried mulch, straw, sand, and pea gravel. Hope someone has some ideas.
     
  3. DarkWolf

    DarkWolf Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 11, 2008
    Murray Kentucky
    Cover the run with a roof and install a french drain around it....? [​IMG]

    Seems to be the only sound solution I'd ever read here.
     
  4. ScrmnWoody

    ScrmnWoody Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 12, 2009
    Whatcom County, WA
    Granted, I have a 35' x 50' run...but I am thinking about fencing right down the middle of the run and only letting the chickens have access to half at a time. Similar to what some people do with horses in fields.
     
  5. hippichick

    hippichick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2008
    Branch, La
    All of my runs have a layer of sand, then a layer of mulch on top of that. No mud, and not much of a smell at all. Works great for me. [​IMG]

    Paula
     
  6. Sissy

    Sissy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 18, 2007
    Sevier county, Tn.
    we have had rain here and were also dealing with
    mud ,so we covered runs with tarps and tie downs
    the ladies and gent come out everyday and have a romp.
    with no more
    rain in the run.
     
  7. orchidchick

    orchidchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2008
    south florida
    Sand is the way to go, over a base of some fine gravel if it can be had.

    Orchidchick
     
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Ok, the kids are sockin' back Easter candy in the other room with my husband, so I took a few minutes and did a Big Ol' Mud Page (for the same reason as the ventilation page -- so's I no longer have to type this out over and over and over [​IMG])

    Here you go:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=1642-fix-a-muddy-run
    I wrote it three whole minutes ago so it probably needs proofreading and editing and maybe in a perfect world I'll add some photos, but the general info is all there.

    Have fun, good luck with your mud,

    Pat
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2009
  9. cajunlizz

    cajunlizz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2008
    Lafayette, Louisiana
    Quote:What kind of Mulch do you use ? and how thick do you put it ?
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2009
  10. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC
    Site selection and preparation is probably the most important issue of all, when one considers the technical side of poultry waste management.

    But there is also a simpler and far more sublime concept worth considering:

    Have fewer chickens in the same space.

    ==========================================

    Confinement is the culprit, as always. Chickens will denude their living space in no time with their incessant scratching. It's what they do - it's all they do. Well, that and defecating 70% of what they eat. Couple these two and you have a diseased mess, quick.

    The way to beat it is to think outside of the normal box and unbind them. Undo their confinement and give them enough room, so the earth itself can begin to absorb their activities. Ideally, you turn them loose so they can roam at will.

    But for most that is impractical. SO, if you cannot give them unlimited space, give them as much as you can in your alloted area. So, how many are enough?

    Are you ready? - - - 87.12 square feet/bird is minimum.
    More space is better. I allow double that and have never had a problem with mud or filth.

    But, you can limit out on your space allotment pretty quick using these numbers. This means your next option is to have fewer birds equal to the space.

    On another note, it is worth examining the following: dispense with roofs and other enclosing structures. Open things up to the air, so to speak, and add shrubbery and low undergrowth to the run. I like to think of the run as really a miniature jungle, instead of the "normal" moonscape most people subject their chicknes to.

    Few can wrap their mind around such thinking, I admit. These ideas impose limits, restrictions and discipline on the "feathered aquarium effect" most are shooting for. When it becomes apparent that one can only have 6 or 8 chickens in such a nominal sized run, instead of 25 or 30 variegated birds slogging around, well........ who wants to hear that?

    =============================================

    When in doubt, simply do what Pat says. She knows her stuff.

    BTW PAT, very nice article.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2009

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