Our run is filled with stinky sand - any ideas???

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by zenhen165, May 21, 2016.

  1. zenhen165

    zenhen165 New Egg

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    May 21, 2016
    Hi guys,

    We've got a covered run that started out filled with sand. Six months later the run is now, not surprisingly, filled with a lots of chicken poop that looks like sand. We've tried saturating the area with water to let the organic matter drain through but that didn't solve the problem. Any ideas you can offer regarding stink and fly reduction, short of completely replacing the 2000 lbs. of sand and poop, would be much appreciated.

    Thank you!
     
  2. Chicken Egg 17

    Chicken Egg 17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well it sounds like u are just going to start having to scoop poop or just get rid of the sand. Replacing the sand is just going to do the same thing as before.
     
  3. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    How about doing deep litter, starting with lotsa shavings on top of the sand, and working up from there? Could you shovel out a couple inches of the mess first? That's why I don't do sand! Poop scooping daily is NOT going to happen here, rather we shovel out nice useful mulch a couple times a year. Mary
     
  4. MultipleAnimals

    MultipleAnimals Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I Have To Agree with Mary
     
  5. ChickenMammX4

    ChickenMammX4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree with Mary. Deep Litter has worked great for us in the run. We only need to clean out once a year and are rewarded with beautiful compost for thr garden.
     
  6. Wise Woman

    Wise Woman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I third this idea. Get rid of the sand! I absolutely hate sand. I do not understand why sand in coops and runs is so heavily promoted. It is like having an enormous cat litter box. It is disgusting and scooping poop every single day of the year is not my idea of fun. If you don't do it every day, it quickly looks like an uncleaned litter box. The sand and the installation of poop boards have caused us nothing but more work and smell and the poop just lays there on top of the sand. YUCK!!!! We have had more chicken health issues since installing sand in our coop than we ever had with deep litter. I will never have sand in my coop or run ever again.

    We used to do deep litter and I cannot wait to get our new coop built this summer and get back to deep litter. Our coop will be located in our raised bed garden and so everything will work together. The poop into the litter, the litter into the compost, bin, the compost into the raised beds, the food from the raised beds to our table and the scraps from our table back to the chickens. Doesn't get better than that.
     
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  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Last edited: May 22, 2016
  8. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    It seems like it's the new folks with four pet chickens, or people with way more time then I've got to mess with chicken poo.My horses have pasture and run-ins, my chickens have deep litter, and I work full time to pay for it all! Mary
     
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  9. zenhen165

    zenhen165 New Egg

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    May 21, 2016
    Thanks everyone for your feedback! It seems I've struck a chord with the deep litter fans. Creating an ecosystem that rids your coop of that nasty smell and provides beautiful compost makes a lot of sense. Unfortunately our set up is not deep enough to allow the various layers required for deep litter. I've done a little more digging around in the forum on this topic and will most likely try replacing a few inches of the top layer with fresh sand and then try some PDZ to see if that works.
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    That will not work long term...or for very long at all.
    If you're going to take out a few inches of sand, replace it with organic materials instead of more sand.
    Almost any kind of wood chips (tho chips from tree trimmings are best), some straw, some dry leaves, some dry(or fewer fresh) grass clippings.
    Spread a thin layer, and inch or so,and let the birds scratch it into the remaining sand....soon most will be invisible, then you can add more.
    I think you will notice very quickly a reduction of odor...that was my experience with a bare, sandy soil in the run that reeked when wet.
    I couldn't/can't get a lot of material at once, so I just add stuff as I get it......still don't have 'deep' litter but it definitely helps.
     

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