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Need information for inside of coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Georgetownchick, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. Georgetownchick

    Georgetownchick In the Brooder

    Oct 29, 2012
    We have recently finished our coop. It has a small run and above the run is the hen house where they will stay at night. The run will be open during the day so they can also free range. What do I do about the flooring in the run and the floor in the hen house? Do I just leave the dirt and grass that is in the run or do I need to put shavings or sand or something down? The run area is covered on the top but the sides it is just hardware cloth so it may get wet inside when it rains. The hen house though is completely enclosed on all sides so it should always be dry. Also, how often do you change the bedding in the nesting boxes? Do I just use the shavings for that or some other material? Thank you!

  2. Baymule

    Baymule Songster

    Jul 1, 2010
    Northeast Texas
    The dirt in the run should be just fine. I just filled our run with raked up leaves. The girls love scratching in them and in the spring, I'll have compost for the garden! As long as it is dry and not smelly, the dirt should be ok, if it is wet, them you might want to put some shavings in it. I use deep litter, just add more on top and clean out several times a year. Change the bedding in the nest box when it gets messed up. You'll know when. [​IMG]
  3. TinTennessee

    TinTennessee Songster

    Mar 25, 2012
    Springfield , TN.
    My Coop
    My coop has a attached run too. It's covered, with about a foot overhang on each side. The lowest point of the roof is about 5 foot tall. It doesn't get wet at all. Some people put sand or gravel in the run, mine is or was grass. It's bare earth after only 5 months. The birds do kick some shavings into the run. I rake it out and add to the compost pile. You can put hay, grass clippings, straw, pine shavings or even the astro turf type carpet in the nest boxes. It's personal preference. Change the filling when its dirty, maybe twice a year here. I only have 6 hens. Best of luck.
  4. redsoxs

    redsoxs Crowing

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Yes, I agree with the former posts. I let my birds free range most days so I have a smaller run - this makes it easy to toss down hay or straw to keep the mud down and from them tracking into the coop. In the coop is a thick layer of hay. Good luck to you!
  5. JanetS

    JanetS Songster

    Jun 22, 2012
    My run has dirt/sand. I'm trying out sand in the coop. So far not to happy with that. It's easier to clean out but is very messy. The chickens always have dirty feet. Will probably go back to pine shavings. Nesting boxes have hay.

    As for a wet run I put plastic sheeting on a few sides to keep a part of the run clean and dry. My chickens don't go into the coop when it rains so this is a big help. Run has roof also.
  6. Vinniemac

    Vinniemac Chirping

    Oct 9, 2011
    Western Pennsylvania
    Ive noticed more people on this site use wood shavings over hay.What are the pros & cons of both
  7. trooper

    trooper Songster

    Apr 26, 2010
    [​IMG]I have never used hay and a lot of it is personal preference.I do use pine course shavings in my coop as well as in my nests.The pine isn't as dusty.quite absorbent and dries fairly fast.I rake it occasionally to keep it turned and it does great.I don't have to change it very often because I do the deep liter method and this helps to keep the floor warm in the winter.The dealings that I have had in the past with hay or straw is that it seems to hold moisture and packs when wet and walked on.It is harder to work with and is course.It seems to be more compact and hard to fluff for bedding.With shavings when I get my eggs out of the nests and fluff them so that they don't get compacted tight.[​IMG]

  8. popsicle

    popsicle Songster

    I use shavings inside the coop--mostly because it doesn't clump up like hay so it's easier to get nice coverage--the chickens kick it around a lot less. Also, shavings are a lot cheaper here most of the time.

    I usually throw the hay-waste from my goats into the chicken run in the summer. The goats won't eat hay that's fallen to the ground--I rake that up and give it to the less-fussy chickens.
  9. trooper

    trooper Songster

    Apr 26, 2010
    [​IMG] I just read a thread about using hay in your coop and I kind of like the idea.Use shavings in your coop but every now and then throw some hay or straw in the shavings.This gives the chickens something else to scratch around.It gets broken up and mixes in with the shavings.I do like the idea of the goat manure thrown into the run.The chickens can scratch thru it and get bugs.They also break it up and makes good compost.[​IMG]
  10. kreagerm

    kreagerm Chirping

    Feb 11, 2012
    I have an open run, that is just dirt and then I cover it with raked leaves and as mentioned earlier, they love to scratch in it. Also the leaves keep them from getting dirty when it's wet. You might also want to think about where your food is going to be. I suggest you keep it in the coop or at the least a very dry place. Because any spill over, once it gets wet it starts to seep in the group and rot. And you talking about a smell, whew

    Also for inside the coop. I suggest a poop board with sweet pdz, what a difference in waste volume. I also keep straw on the floor of the coop just for warmth.

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