Questions about coop "bedding" and "deep litter method" during the winter

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by DavidMontes, Dec 30, 2012.

  1. DavidMontes

    DavidMontes New Egg

    Nov 8, 2012
    Hello! I was wondering if anyone had any ideas on how to make my flock more comfortable during the winter. What do you all personally use for bedding and nesting material in your coops during the winter months? Will pine needles really help keep them warmer? Does anyone do the the deep litter method? I would appreciate any information and suggestions on this matter. Thank you & stay warm! :)
  2. ThePaintedHen

    ThePaintedHen Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 18, 2012
    Berlin, Massachusetts
    I use the DLM with pine shavings and a liberal sprinkling of diatomaceous earth. If the poop builds up in any one area I throw on some more shavings and DE. I maybe have to do this once a week or less. As far as I know, pine needles would work too, as long as they aren't full of sticky sap. As well as being less work, the DLM is supposed to provide a bit of warmth from the heat of decomposition.
  3. Roxannemc

    Roxannemc Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2012
    SE Missouri
    I gues depends where you live as some can get messy but in the country i use straw.It is very insulating just add some on top of the poo daily
  4. Mtn Laurel

    Mtn Laurel Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 18, 2012
    Northern Virginia
    My Coop
    I do deep litter with pine shavings and autumn leaves. Have bags of leaves set aside to add during the winter. I also add a thin layer of dirt from our woods as I want the microbes and such that are living in there to facilitate the litter decomposition. No DE for me as the DE will kill most everything - the good and bad - and I'm wanting to keep the good as they'll often get rid of the bad. Everyone does it a bit different and whatever works for you is what's right.

    I would think pine needles would be fine but would add pine shavings in with them as pine needles are rather slow to decompose and aren't very absorbent.
  5. maryhysong

    maryhysong Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 24, 2012
    Claypool, Arizona
    I use straw, shredded paper, leaves, any kind of carbon material I can get, over a dirt floor. I have heavy messy ducks too and they tend to pack the litter down tight, so I loosen it up with my digging fork about once a week and toss some more straw on top. If you are getting ammonia fumes then 1) you have too many birds for the space and/or 2) you need more carbon to soak up the manure.
  6. DavidMontes

    DavidMontes New Egg

    Nov 8, 2012
    Thank you all! All the advice is deeply appreciated We are currently using a mixture of straw & pine shaving and will probably start adding leaves and dirt to help with the decomposition for the DLM. We want to use the DLM to make compost for their own garden bed to grow treats in the spring! :)
  7. DavidMontes

    DavidMontes New Egg

    Nov 8, 2012
    thank you very much for the advice! your blogs are very helpful as well :)

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