Pics Of Uncovered Sand Run After Rain (UPDATED AFTER 12 INCHES OF RAIN - POST 1)

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by kuntrygirl, Jan 2, 2013.

  1. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    I wanted to share this information along with pics to anyone who is trying to decide what type of bedding to use in their coops. I see posts on BYC asking about which is the best bedding to use and if sand is a good bedding to use.
    The type of bedding that a person uses depends on their own unique situation. No bedding is right or wrong. You just have to find what works for you. Throughout the last 2 years, I have found that "washed" sand works best for me. As long as I have birds, I will always use sand in my runs. Because our rainy days is Louisiana sometimes end with as much as 6 inches or rain if not more, sand is the key to not having the pens flood. I do have dirt in some of my stalls but they are covered, so it never gets wet or muddy. But this year, I am using sand in ALL runs.

    Over the last week or so, we have had a LOT of rain. Yesterday, we had a 100% chance of rain and it rained several inches in my area. I thought that this would be a perfect opportunity for me to take pics of my sand run after a total drench of rain. To show you exactly how much it rained in my area, I took a pic of the ditches in my front yard, so that it can give you an idea. It literally rained ALL DAY long on yesterday. I had to run outside when it slacked off to try to take a pic of the sand run before night fall.

    Please find below pics of my sand run when I first built my pen and put the sand in. This pen was built 2 years ago and sand was put in the run at the same time, so the sand is 2 years old. Please keep in mind that I have not had to add any more sand and I have NEVER EVER EVER had to scoop poop or do anything with the sand. There is absolutely NO smell at all and there is NEVER an accumlation of poop. I literally have not touched this sand in 2 years.

    Day 1 of Sand in Run 2 years ago. This pen was built January 2011. The measurements are 28 feet long - 10 feet wide - 8 feet tall.
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    Pic of the top of the pen. This shows that I have an unprotected/uncovered pen. There is only wire at the top, so it rains directly in the run.
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    Pic of what my ditches looked like yesterday after it rained ALL DAY. Keep in mind that this is a deep ditch. When I am outside and my chickens and ducks are in the ditch scratching and digging for bugs, I cannot see them if I am in the back yard. They disappear in the ditch. That's how deep this ditch is.
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    Pics of my ducks enjoying the rain in another ditch.
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    Pic of what a little bit of the chicken yard looks like after a rain. My turkey was inspecting the damage. If I would have a dirt run, this is how much of a mess I would be dealing with.
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    Here are pics of the pen that has the sand run. I took this right after taking pics of the ditches. It was getting dark outside, so the pics may not be as clear as I would have liked them to be. But at least you can get an idea. I took pics at different angles (length and width of the pen). I tried to focus on the "wet spots". Where you see darker areas, is where it was "damp". Notice that I used the word damp and not muddy or a puddle of water. It was only damp. There was not even a puddle of water in the pen where the sand is. I could not even scoop up a tablespoon of water from the sand if I wanted to because there was literally no water. There was nothing there. This is why I am a fan of sand and I advocate for sand runs. Can a uncovered dirt run or shavings in an uncovered run measure up to this type of weather? Could dirt or shavings have been this dry after continuous rain all day? My chicken yard is all dirt and when it rains it is A MESS.

    The proof is in the pics. I'll let you decide. I hope that this helps anyone who is trying to decide what type of bedding to use in their uncovered run or even covered run.

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    UPDATED To Show Sand Run After 12 Inches of Rain - 1-11-2013

    We had terrible weather on yesterday. Roads, schools and everything was closed due to heavy rains, flooding, tornadoes and everything else. We had 12 inches of rain in my area. I went out to take a pic of the uncovered sand run to see how it held up in 12 inches of rain and this is how it looked.

    There were 2 spots that looked damp but no puddles of water anywhere. I stepped in the damp spots with my steel toe boots to see how much water was in there. I would not even have been able to scoop up a tablespoon of water. There was ZERO water in the uncovered sand run after 12 inches of rain. I was sold before on a sand run but now even more so.
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    Here are pics of what the roads looked like in my area on yesterday. This is about 1 mile from my house. I was flooded in and I could not leave my house on yesterday.
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    For the record, this is what my chicken yard looks like. Mud Mud and more Mud!!! If I could pour sand on 3/4 acre, I would. :/

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    Last edited: Jan 11, 2013
    4 people like this.
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Great photos. I lived in the New Orleans area for over 30 years so I am familiar with the rains you can get.

    I see sand contained so it doesn't wash away and raised so it has some place to drain to. Great set-up.
     
  3. BirdWalkFarm

    BirdWalkFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    [​IMG] I love my sand !
     
  4. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    Thank you. You surely know about the type of rains that we get down here. Not nice at all.
     
  5. ssterling1776

    ssterling1776 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks! I was just trying to decide on sand or deep litter method and was concerned about the rain we get here. Last thing I want is a moldy coop/run!
     
  6. ssterling1776

    ssterling1776 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do you have the sand in the coop too? Or just the run?
     
  7. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    Yes, I have sand in the coop as well.
     
  8. Eggsoteric

    Eggsoteric Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Question, how do you think sand in the run would do in colder climates? Also, does the sand get hot during your summer months? How much sand did you put down? Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2013
  9. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    We don't get too cold in Louisiana but cold enough. I'm not sure about your area. Does it snow a lot in your area? If so, how many inches?

    Sand is VERY dry and it really can't retain moisture (if that makes sense). The sand does not get hot during the summer months. I have done the barefoot walk in the run on a hot Louisiana days to test the temps and my feet were just fine. The sand was cool.

    I think we started off with 4 inches but you will hear that a lot of people say 6 inches. The key is to making sure you have the sand contained. If you notice in the pics, the boards along the side. Those boards assist in keeping the sand in so that it does not wash away when it rains. We made sure to make sure that we got enough sand not to spill over the sides. Of course, they may kick a bit out here and there but not a lot. I have not had to add any sand in 2 years. But just for good measure, I do plan on adding more sand just for the heck of it.
     
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  10. Eggsoteric

    Eggsoteric Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm in MD. Our snowfall varies from year to year. We could get nothing one year and 3' plus another year. I may experiment with this method in my smaller pen just to see how it goes before I decide to do the larger pens. Thanks!
     

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