My Chicken run enclosure is built on Trex decking

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Fairsherr, Mar 15, 2013.

  1. Fairsherr

    Fairsherr New Egg

    7
    0
    9
    Mar 8, 2013
    Any suggestions on what to put down on top of it? Just straw? I will have a box in one corner that will contain dirt and I am planning to buy some pieces of sod to put in the run. I am sure the grass will not last very long though! I was just wondering if there are others of you that have your chickens on just decking and how that has worked for you...
    Thanks in advance for any input and advice! Cluck, cluck.
     
  2. fried green eggs

    fried green eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,904
    64
    173
    Mar 25, 2011
    S.E. Michigan
    Make sure they have a large sand area for dust baths. The sod will have a very short life unless, you put it in a box frame covered with chicken wire. They can stand on the wire and only eat the tops of the grass so they won't kill the roots.
     
  3. TattooedKeeper3

    TattooedKeeper3 Chillin' With My Peeps

    225
    8
    73
    Mar 6, 2013
    Plantersville, Tx
    For an addition in dusting boxes, I have found that diatomaceous earth is great. You need food grade for animals (cats, dogs, chickens, poultry, livestock) and humans. You can get the powdered kind, which I personally have found to be better than granules, at a feed store. I get mine at Tractor Supply. You sprinkle it in their food and helps keep them from having internal parasites. You sprinkle it on the floor of the coop before the bedding goes down to help keep away external parasites, bugs, ants, and such. You mix it in with their dust box for them to fluff through their feathers and it does kill and keep them from having chicken lice, mites, and other creepy crawlers. It doesn't take much. It saves a lot of money in the long run and has assisted in keeping my chickens very healthy. I get a 20 lbs bag for I think $22. It lasts me several months or more depending on my use. I now mix it in with my dogs and cats food to keep them wormed. It works wonderfully all around.
    http://www.richsoil.com/diatomaceous-earth.jsp
    http://www.earthworkshealth.com/pets-animals.php
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. Fairsherr

    Fairsherr New Egg

    7
    0
    9
    Mar 8, 2013
    Thank you for the advice about putting the sod in a box and covering it with wire - I will do that!
    So, is it better to have a box with sand or should I provide actual dirt for the chickens to take a "bath"?
     
  5. TattooedKeeper3

    TattooedKeeper3 Chillin' With My Peeps

    225
    8
    73
    Mar 6, 2013
    Plantersville, Tx
    You're welcome. I am not sure on that one. [​IMG] I just let the girls use dirt. I noticed mine scratching at their comb tonight when I checked on them. Tomorrow I will sprinkle some D.E. powder where they were taking their dirt baths and maybe rub them down with some. It is time for me to sprinkle some more in the coops. It has been about a month and it's getting warmer rapidly out here. At around noon it was 83 degrees according to our thermometer. I am in a new area now and am unfamiliar with how that might (bug wise) affect my flock. Whichever you chose let me know how it goes? I might have to change things up a bit being in the new area. I try hard not to use chemicals at all with the chickens. When I need to disinfect I use straight distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle.
     
  6. 4 the Birds

    4 the Birds Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,490
    89
    163
    Oct 15, 2010
    Westfield, Indiana
    Trex will last a loooong time but why not just use treated wood planks? Much cheaper and the wood will last a lifetime. I built our house deck out of trex so that there is no splinters or need to repaint! Love the stuff. I would do wood planks in the coop and dirt or sand in the run. Add pine chips (unless you decide on the sand method) and you are good to go!

    Basic coop framing with treated wood plank floor.
    [​IMG]
     
  7. fried green eggs

    fried green eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,904
    64
    173
    Mar 25, 2011
    S.E. Michigan
    I saw the sod idea with pictures on this site. I will try to find it again and post a link for you if, I can find it. I'm going to build some for my runs too. Sand drains and drys faster than dirt. I like mixing in some mason sand with regular sand because, it has small gravel in it that the chicken can eat. Natural grit.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by