Run question- How long before chickens eat all the grass?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by aim30, May 7, 2007.

  1. aim30

    aim30 Chirping

    May 7, 2007
    I will be getting 5 chickens with a 4 x 10 coop. I want to split a 10 x 30 run in half so each side of the run is 10 x 15. If I let my chickens out and alternate between the 2 sides each day, will they eat all the grass up still?
  2. allen wranch

    allen wranch Crowing

    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    Yes, they will eventually eat all the grass, because neither side has a chance to recooperate. Some people let one side get bare, reseed, then switch to the other side. You could also try letting them eat the tops off everything, then switch.
  3. For my 3 hens in a chicken tractor which is 5x8, it takes 3 days for them to completely clear the ground, even if the grass was a foot tall when they started.

    I've also noticed that the grass where they were hasn't grown back the way it would have, had it been mowed, even 2 months later.

    I'm learning new things every day!
  4. ChrissyNC

    ChrissyNC In the Brooder

    Mar 7, 2007
    Richlands, NC
    I wondered the same myself, re: run size and how quickly the chickens tear it all up. I haven't made a run yet, but I have lots of room. Do I start out huge, like 30 x 40 (or more) for 12 hens, and hope it can take it? or make a smaller run since they will probably clear the bigger one anyway, so might as well just make it smaller to begin with and have less of a bare patch in my back yard?
  5. barg

    barg Songster

    Apr 27, 2007
    The Question I have is... will the crab grass in my yard finally be terminated -- 3 week old lawn killers in the laundry room, waiting for go! I can't wait! [​IMG]
    Last edited: May 9, 2007
  6. cheapcheap_jeepjeep

    cheapcheap_jeepjeep Songster

    Mar 12, 2007
    Villa Grove
  7. chicksnducks

    chicksnducks Songster

    Apr 16, 2007
    Durant OK
    silly question, but what happens after they eat all the grass in a stationary pen? Will that be ok?
  8. When I moved to my house, the property had a coop and covered run area that was completely devoid of life. I've been here nearly a year, and just a few weeds in the place where the run used to be; I'm thinking that the chickens must have eaten every last little weed/grass seed there was. My neighbors tell me that the original owner used to give away eggs galore, so I'm thinking the hens didn't mind the bare ground. The neighbors also said they traded food scraps for eggs, so I'm thinking the chickens must have gotten supplemental McFeed...

    The one thing I noticed is that the run area is more gravelly and sandy than the surrounding soil, so it looks like the owners amended things a little. The soil drains MUCH more quickly than the surrounding soil, and stays a lot drier.
  9. 2mnypets

    2mnypets Songster

    Apr 11, 2007
    Galesburg, IL.
    I can tell you that in less than a couple of days of my group being outside permantely ( and that was about 3-4 weeks ago), the grass was gone. It has not come back. In fact I moved the lil pool out to give them more room, and within 15 min. of the pool being removed, what green and yellow grass was there, is no more. They are very efficent creatures. I don't even have to weed eat around the enclosed run. They do it for me.
  10. lexa

    lexa In the Brooder

    May 10, 2007
    WOW! I had no idea chickens could kill grass so completely, even down to the roots? I was pondering getting some sod and making them a small lawn so they didn't have just weeds to eat but I guess I won't waste the money! My chickens live at another property than my house so luckily I don't have to worry about them killing my nice lawn (small though it is!). I never know what to do with the lawnmower clippings. Would they like to eat it? Should I save it all and bring it to them?

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