Pen/run muddy mess, even the covered part

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by amama, Apr 27, 2016.

  1. amama

    amama Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2016
    Midwest US
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    We raised our coop so the hens would always have underneath for shade/shelter, etc. When they aren't free ranging they love hanging out underneath it even on beautiful days, however we are in our spring tornado/thunderstorm season and have had a few days straight of rain and it's a sopping muddy mess in the entire pen/run. It's because the coop is built somewhat downhill which was unavoidable as our large acreage is almost all hilly except way far from the house, and we didn't want chickens that far away.

    We had placed a few bags of sand down, esp. under their nipple waterer, but it hasn't done any good. We throw weeds/grass in there when we have it. They have a tire in there filled with sand/ash (and lots of chicken poop now) that also got wet in the storms.

    Any suggestions on how to give them a better place to lay/dustbathe, etc? I had posted before about sand getting blown away (it's also super windy where we live almost daily), and now I'm afraid it's just getting washed away.

    Thank you
     
  2. Firekin1

    Firekin1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use bark mulch in my run and have kitty litter pans spread around for dust bathing...I use to use pea gravel but I found in the summer my birds wouldn't walk on it, I assumed because it got hot...the bark mulch seems to be working for me though.
     
  3. amama

    amama Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2016
    Midwest US
    Bark mulch you make from trees you cut down, or do you buy the bark mulch?
     
  4. AllynTal

    AllynTal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 22, 2014
    Mississippi Gulf Coast
    Either...both. You can buy bark mulch in bags at garden stores or Lowes/Home Depot. If you need a lot, you can find who sells it locally in bulk and have it delivered. The truck will dump a big ol' pile in your driveway.
     
  5. amama

    amama Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2016
    Midwest US
    Okay, I didn't know it was just plain mulch you can buy at the store, I thought it was a special kind. I don't know why I thought I had read those all had dye in them and shouldn't be used for chickens, but maybe they have some plain mulch and it makes sense that would help the mud. Thanks!
     
  6. Firekin1

    Firekin1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nova Scotia
    I'm not sure about your location but yes, here I buy bags of just plain mulch, not the ceder or decorative dyed bags, just plain ole bark...so far its doing the trick, the chickens will kick it around quite a bit because they seem to enjoy digging through it, ifnit piles up in one spot I just rake it out fkat again..lol
     
  7. RonP

    RonP Chillin' With My Peeps

    Personally, I would start with 6-10 inches of free wood chips.

    Keep adding till your mud disappears...
     
    1 person likes this.

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