NOT using Wood shavings, what do you use?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by tish_matt, Sep 2, 2011.

  1. tish_matt

    tish_matt Out Of The Brooder

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    What does everyone else use for the flooring in the coop? We have been using wood shavings but they dont seem to be breaking down enough to use in the garden and we are not going to pick through for the poop. Plus the mice are living and breeding inside our compost area and that is causing more and more snakes to show up. When we lifted it off yesterday there were about 15 mice scattering and babies feeding off the mothers. We dont want this anywhere near our property,

    Under our shavings we are using a spongy work out pads that connect to each other that are about 1/2 inch to an inch thick to protect the wood floor of the shed. Could we use this as our primary flooring without shavings?

    If not next step will be some kind of rotating compost bin.
     
  2. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

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    Why not just use straw?
     
  3. ThomsonCentennialFarm

    ThomsonCentennialFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use sand and sift out the poop. Straw in the nest boxes. The coop is the cleanest and least smelly it's ever been, and the poop dries out nicely.
     
  4. Alethea

    Alethea Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We use straw and change it once a month. We pile it up thickly so that we can remove a layer, combined with the poop, before the monthly clean out if we want to. The chickens love the new straw. They immediately come in and rearrange it to their liking. The straw goes into a pile by the compost and later (you don't want to put it directly onto the garden right away because the fresh poop is too hot) becomes the brown and chicken manure layer. It can also be used as mulch for fruit trees. May the flock be with you.
     
  5. gale65

    gale65 Chillin' With My Peeps

    We use sand right now and the poop dries right up. We are going to switch to shavings but don't need to worry about composting. When dh cleans it out he'll put it right in the manure spreader and put in on the fields in the wintertime. Since our fields are big we won't have to worry about the composting (according to dh). If we didn't have this option we'd probably stick with sand, since I don't want to put chicken poop in my garden.
     
  6. duckinnut

    duckinnut Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:You might want to rethink the chicken poop in the garden. This year was the first year with chicken manure in my garden and by far the best harvest and continuing as we speak. Got so many veggies have had to bring them to the local food pantry.Tomatoes galore, zucchinis, omg cucumbers, chiles, jalapenos, pepperonchinis, eggplantsand basil by the bushel. Oh yeah butternut the size of footballs. Free fertilizer and production.
     
  7. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I have a metal shed coop. I USED to use pine shavings and the deep litter method. But the edges of the shed inside became wet with rain leakage and the shavings became smelly.

    So now I use no shavings at all. I use a plastic rake/scraper EVERY morning to scrape the poo off the whole floor. I treat the whole floor as a poop board.

    I sprinkle DE or Sweet PDZ (which I like better but I'm still trying to use that same bag of DE up that I've had forever) on the "wet spots" of the floor after scraping.

    I hose out the shed once a year or so. Twice a year or so I pour a bleach solution around the edge on the inside and rake it to kill mold that still seems to grow when it is the rainy season (all winter).

    It works well for me. And I have saved a bundle on shavings. I use them in just the nestboxes now.

    My method will eventually ruin the plywood floor. It would have been better to install vinyl flooring first (waterproof). But I have to say that I have seen NO change in the floor during the past ?I think year???? that I have been using this method.

    Edited again to add that this doesn't work in very cold weather. I have to put hay (have some in my other shed - ready already) or shavings on the floor when our temps go way down- not too often here. We usually get about two weeks that I have to do this.

    So for folks that get snow regularly it wouldn't be good.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2011
  8. cravenchx

    cravenchx Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We used wood shaving before the feathers appeared,
    then went to straw. We also use coffee grounds in the
    compost pile. Man, the steam when you turn it over
    could run a small locomotive! Under the perch can
    become messy very quickly, but I remove that and
    add more as needed.
     
  9. ladycutter

    ladycutter Finally a Farmeress

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    I am using Rice Hulls, they were quite expensive $15 for 50 lb bale but they last a long time as I can scoop out the poop with a kitty litter scoop and the rest of it stays clean...it took a little bit before the layers figured out it WASN'T rice but they did figure it out. Now if I can just keep the ground squirrels out of the tractor we will be good! The rice hulls do tend to leak out of the bag as well so having an extra clean garbage can around to put them in helps a lot, but the are dry so they stick to the poop really well and so far they compost well but I haven't had to do a total clean out yet (I move it to one side to put down DE every once in a while then move it all to that side and do the other side) and it has been about 5 months with it. I just bought my second bale of it as I do add new about once every week or so, they kick a little out, it falls out the door or down the ramp, etc.

    Good luck figuring out what will work for you...by the way, we are in damp Oregon so sand isn't really an option for us here, but the dry rice hulls have worked good so far, but it may depend on the climate where you live also...I think sand would be great in a dry climate if it wasn't in the sun (then it would get hot on the little chicken feet!).
     
  10. gale65

    gale65 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:You might want to rethink the chicken poop in the garden. This year was the first year with chicken manure in my garden and by far the best harvest and continuing as we speak. Got so many veggies have had to bring them to the local food pantry.Tomatoes galore, zucchinis, omg cucumbers, chiles, jalapenos, pepperonchinis, eggplantsand basil by the bushel. Oh yeah butternut the size of footballs. Free fertilizer and production.

    I know it's good for it but I'm way too much of a germophobe to put it in there. [​IMG]
     

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