Sand or Dirt for the Run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by dizzle's chicks, Jul 6, 2011.

  1. dizzle's chicks

    dizzle's chicks Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2011
    I am almost done with the coop and about to start on the run. Was wondering what people are using for the run floor, sand or dirt. My local Lowes has 50lb play sand for $2.00 per bag which is a really good deal but while supplies last. I heard that dirt doesn't drain well but I and going to cover the walls so rain can't get in. I also heard that chickens like to bathe in dirt. Can they do the same in the sand??? I am also thinking about adding straw to the run as well. Thanks
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2011
  2. EnonChickenDaddy

    EnonChickenDaddy Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2011
    Chester, VA
    I've got a 5 x 10 run and I put in sand, about 4" deep. I love it. It is cheaper if you have access to a pick up truck or a trailer and go to a landscape place (where they sell mulch). I got 1/2 yard builders sand (or construction sand) for $25 (kinda high, but that's what was available in my area). That turned out to be the perfect amount. I let mine free range a couple hours a day and that is usually when they take their dust bath, but I have seen them doing it in the sand. Sand is so easy to keep clean with a litter scoop and when I do not clean the poop right away it breaks down into the sand. I heard of someone who had put a shallow bucket of dirt buried in their sand for the girls to dust bath in. I think they like dirt better for that.
     
  3. EnonChickenDaddy

    EnonChickenDaddy Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2011
    Chester, VA
    Oh...BTW...1/2 yard of sand is about 1500 lbs. (that would be about 30 bags at the homestores)
     
  4. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 31, 2008
    Grifton NC
    I heard that dirt doesn't drain well

    Not all "dirt" is the same.

    It may be your soil will drain just fine without adding anything at all​
     
  5. nightshade

    nightshade Chillin' With My Peeps

    I used gravel 3 inches deep , mostly because it was free out of out pit. But I love it because I can take the hose and wash it down every couple days so it does not smell even in the ridiculously hot weather we have had recently. It also drain really well so mud is not a spring time issue anymore like it was with our old coop.
     
  6. Kyle241

    Kyle241 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 6, 2011
    I went with sand even though I could have left the grass and dirt alone. I feel the sand will make for a much easier clean-up of the run. I had 3 yards delivered yesterday and moved it with my tractor to the coop and remaining part of the run that did not have sand yet. I went with what we call around here, 'septic grade' sand and removed any rocks that happened to be in it. I also had a few yards of sand from over a year ago when the mason built our masonry heater for our new house and that went into the run.
     

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