newbie ... design planning


9 Years
Oct 10, 2010
Totally new and planing to start fresh in the spring with about 4 - 6 layers (backyard hobby style). I just kicking some ideas on the coop. I noticed a lot of members here have a poop board in their coop. I could not find an answer in the search, so I drew up a sketch of my idea (sorry for the poor drawing).

My idea is to have a 300' roll of plastic tablecloth under the poop board. This would be stretched over the poop board. On the wall there would be a door / hatch to access the plastic to pull some out and cut it off. This would be a quick clean-up of the poop board.

What do you think? Does it make any sense? What do you see as potential problems? Anyone try anything like this?

Thanks for your feedback.


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I would strongly recommend against it. Even if you can magically get the material for free, what a giant waste of plastic! If you can get it for free, find something more useful to do with it

Frankly I think scraping the poo off, to compost or I suppose to put in trash if you must (taking up much less space than having plastic in there!!) is by far the easiest. If you have things set up well, and a nice wide scraper (try the biggest drywall-taping knife you can find), it takes literally a few seconds. That's all.

But, if you wish to have a removeable surface for your droppings board, many forum members have had success with various versions of using opened-out cardboard boxes or newspaper (get them for free, then compost or recycle). Some people have these in shallow 'pans' so that they don't have problems with the stuff shifting around or falling off; or there are other arrangements.

I think it's really creative but it would be a lot of waste - all that plastic going in the garbage. I simply laid vinyl flooring on the bottom of my coop and each morning I scrape up the poop with my dust pan (I keep it hanging on a nail in the coop) and then wipe it down with a damp rag. All clean. Once a week I go in with cleanser and wash down the whole thing.
But the idea is really interesting (and your drawing is pretty good IMO). My only concern would be the chickens perhaps pecking at it or getting caught up, but mostly just the waste & extra work.
Here's the vinyl in mine:

I got the vinyl on freecycle and my husband just laid it down and secured it with lumber. It's been really easy to care for and didn't cost anything. We don't use shavings or anything else - just dump the droppings in the compost daily. So just an idea that works for us.
yea, I know it's not eco friendly but a roll is 300' long ... I was thinking 3' per day = 100 days per roll. As far as time I was thinking open hatch, pull and cut = 5 min max.

I don't know if I could protect the plastic from the chickens ... or ... the chickens from the plastic.

Oh, well I got lots of time to plan ... thanks
I think you are brilliant, but I might make a suggestion. What about a roll of PAPER instead of plastic. Then you could just compost it all with the poo, it won't harm the chickens and is sustainable.
Wow ... paper instead of plastic ... as simple as that sounds, I did not think of that ... thanks. I need to research size and cost
Honestly, please try it with a plain droppings board first, or look at various ways people use cardboard or newspaper if you are 'funny' about the idea of scraping poo. Your idea is just not going to save you any time or effort compared to them! And I think that if you try other methods FIRST, you will find them so satisfactory that you will no longer have the urge to waste 300' of oil-derived plastic every three months

Build the droppings thingie sized to exactly fit used newspaper, with an inch or two rim to hold the paper in, and voila, there ya go!

BTW, if you mean the droppings board to catch most all of the droppings, you will want to eliminate the vertical 'front' of the frame that you illustrate supporting the roost. A bunch of chickens will (Murphy's law being what it is) roost on THAT instead, with their bums hangin' the wrong way, and poo onto the floor ANYhow
You need the droppings board centered under the roost, and remember that *chickens* define what is "roost" so it is best not to offer them incovenient-for-you alternatives <g>

Good luck, have fun,

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Thanks Pat,

Yes the drawing is poor ... I wanted to illustrate two levels and both over the board but I just downloaded Sketch-up last night.

If you have a poop board ... What % of the coop poop is on the board? I have no idea how much walking around they do in the coop ... or how much they poop while off the roost.
That's much better than I could do with sketchup, I got frustrated quick (I can draw by hand much easier than learn 3D programs).

Much of what I've read here says, if your chickens are in the coop just during the night and let out early in the morning, the majority of poop (+\\- 80%) will be on the board. The longer you leave them in after sun up, then more droppings on your floor.

I was thinking of a paper style version of that design, but will probably end up with a slide out board or newspaper on some large bread trays I found.
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