Question about land damage from eat birds...

NewmanLakeMom

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 15, 2012
17
0
24
400
[/IMG][/IMG]We will be housing 40 cornish x outside on the field next door to our property. (Permission from our neighbor). With 40 birds in a tractor about 10x10, what will the land look like when we move The tractor? Does the poop act as a fertilizer without having to water/till? Do we rake once the tractor is moved? I planned on moving the tractor twice a day. Is that enough for minimal land damage?

The neighbor said it was fine as long as the land looked the same as before we started a year later. Any advice? Should I water the "used" portion right after we move it?

I thought the poo would make it look even better! But now I'm having doubts. Our birds arrive tomorrow!

Ay suggestions/advice is appreciated!
 
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Darin115

Songster
11 Years
Apr 28, 2008
387
13
143
Asheboro, NC
The ground will be void of any vegetation and covered in poop. After a good rain the grass will come back and be dark green and much thicker than it was before. In a year you will never know you had chickens on it.

Darin
 

travifive

In the Brooder
6 Years
Mar 27, 2013
70
10
33
Abita Springs, LA
I would definitely move the pen twice a day. When you move it you will notice the spot where they slept will be like a thin of carpet of poop. After a few weeks you will be able to see a very apparent fade from the first day to the present in terms of grass regrowth vs. the "poop carpet." I start my pen in where the grass is the most dense. I also spread out hen scratch in the previous spots so my free range birds will go and scratch the dried poo around.

I've been entertaining the thought of switching all my meat birds to fermented feed the general consensus is that it all but cures the runny poop that is the norm for the breed. I'm curious if it will lighten the impact on the grass. Any hoo, it might be worth considering.
 

Life is Good!

Songster
9 Years
Apr 14, 2011
1,179
227
236
suburbia Chicagoland
Our 25x50' run which housed 25 CX and 25 FR's last summer season (two batches) is definately worse for wear. The places the tractor sat more than 2 days are devoid of all vegetation. It's simply mud. Due to drought, I was unable to water the poo in (and the skies did not provide either). I did rake it out best as possible, overseed in the fall and I'm still waiting to see if the grass is going to come up in places.

Because you do not own the land, I would be exceptionally cautious proceeding. Yes, when the chicks are small, the damage is minimal. However, as they grow (and produce more), that's when the damage is done.

I did feed fermented feed. It does help tremendously with consistency of poo. Instead of watery, it's solid enough to scoop up on a shovel. I would do that as well as much as possible. Raking it in just makes the mess continue further - especially if the land is on a slope.
 

BCMaraniac

Songster
6 Years
Mar 27, 2013
1,860
417
176
I agree with travifire. The key to being a good steward of your neighbor's land(so he might let you use it again) is to move the tractor so the poop concentration is not high. Chicken manure is very high in nitrogen(thus the ammonia smell), which is often referred to as "hot". the high concentration of a hot fertilizer will burn the vegetation, and kill it. Moving the tractor once or twice a day will keep the poop from being so concentrated, and can act more like a fertilizer than a fire.

The "heat" is why you have to compost your chicken manure before you use it as fertilizer, giving it a chance to "cool"
 

travifive

In the Brooder
6 Years
Mar 27, 2013
70
10
33
Abita Springs, LA
400


I took this today after moving some Cornish cross off 4 weeks ago. You can easily tell where the tractors were. Its like someone used a stencil to spray the grass dark green. What you cant tell from the picture is that the grass is also growing back thicker and its already about 1 1/2" taller than the grass to thhe right. Hopefully this will help you make your case to your neighbor.
 
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