Removable poop trays

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by jsweitz, Aug 16, 2014.

  1. jsweitz

    jsweitz Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 10, 2014
    Central Illinois
    Hi!
    We are wanting to build a large brooding house for the chicks from hatched to 6 weeks. During that time I would like to have a removable tray to clean out the poop. My initial thought was a small gage chicken wire so the poop will fall through into the tray, therefor not disturbing the chickens every morning for cleaning. After some research I've realized metal wire is not good for the bottom of the cage. Any suggestions? I would really like something for the waste to fall through into the tray. Thanks!
     
  2. AKyardbirds

    AKyardbirds Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 4, 2014
    We use hardware cloth for the bottom of our brooder pens and went to advanced auto parts and got the large galvanized steel oil drip pans that you slide under a car. IIRC they cost around $8 and are about 2'x3'.
     
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  3. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

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    Actually I don't have a good idea for you...I agree that the wire isn't really a good thing because of the risks to feet and legs as well as the fact that the poop still gets hung up on the wire and that's even harder to clean. Some use it and like it....but it's never made sense to me how they get the poops to obediently fall out of the chicken and hit the exact spot where there's an opening between the twisted wires.
    [​IMG]
    I've found that my girls and I like the early morning chore time - it doesn't seem to disturb them one bit. I go out to clean the poop deck in the early morning, and they all chatter away at my feet. Some fly up onto the roost to "help" me (usually by adding just one more gift for me to remove) while others head for their preferred nesting spots and get to work. I use that time to see if there are any potential problems, if they all look as good as they did when they went to bed, and sneak a pet from the ones who are willing.

    Edited to add: There are those, like the poster above, who use the wire and like it, so I guess, like all things chicken, it comes down to personal preference.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2014
  4. jsweitz

    jsweitz Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 10, 2014
    Central Illinois
    Thanks for your advice! We are hoping to have several brooders with 8 chicks in each and then slowly introduce them into free ranging with mobile chicken tractors. With that being said, I don't know if I will always be able take the time to remove and catch each chick I every morning. Right now we are using plastic totes, but would like something more permanent. We looked into drip pans for that exact size but didn't find anything that cheap! Will check out advanced auto parts soon! Also, do you every have problems with sores or bumble foot from using the hardware cloth?
    Thanks!
     
  5. AKyardbirds

    AKyardbirds Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 4, 2014
    We have never had a problem with feet or legs and visited a larger poultry breeding farm and they used the same thing. Here are some pics of our pens that we made from 2x4s, 1" hex poultry wire and I think 1/2"x1/2" hardware cloth. You can see the 2 drip pans in the pic. We built the pen so 3 pans would fit perfectly underneath.

    Also, chicks don't have large solid poop like adult birds so it falls right through and surprisingly nothing ever got hung up. The wire always looked clean.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  6. jsweitz

    jsweitz Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 10, 2014
    Central Illinois
    Thank you! That is exactly what I was envisioning! Thanks for the pictures, VERY helpful!!
     
  7. jsweitz

    jsweitz Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 10, 2014
    Central Illinois
    How many chickens do you keep in your 2'x3' cage? And for how long?
     
  8. AKyardbirds

    AKyardbirds Out Of The Brooder

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    Our pens are 6'3" x 3' with 24" tall sides. Three of the drip pans fit under them perfectly. We do not have a top made for ours so as soon as they can fly a little they will be perching up on the side.

    Depending on how many chicks you have and if you have a top or not will determine how long they will stay in the pen.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2014

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