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sand or limestone grit?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by RobbinsBobbin, Apr 17, 2017.

  1. RobbinsBobbin

    RobbinsBobbin In the Brooder

    Jan 8, 2016
    Lena, Illinois
    Hi. I am building a coop. I was going to put down a layer of sand under the deep litter base. I was also going to put down a layer of sand around it to keep the mud down. When I called my local excavating guy, he told me that all the chicken guys in my area use limestone grit. This is the dust that is left when they grind the limestone that is used for the gravel roads here in Northwestern Illinois. I have never heard of this. Anyone out there have any views on this? Thanks.

  2. Howard E

    Howard E Songster

    Feb 18, 2016
    I would suggest you use neither the sand or waste rock.......the fines from a limestone quarry operation.

    I used the waste rock for a dog kennel once and it packed down like cement. Worked great until the dog was gone and I wanted to use it for lawn and flower beds and garden and it was a mess. Nothing would grow where that had been. Rock and sand are both inert.......they get wet, smear with the droppings and never break down or combine with the manure, and worse, keep it away from the coarse litter that will.

    So what to do instead to keep the mud down? First, make sure the site is well drained. No surface water collecting under the run. Think of an inverted bowl, water runs off that......vs. a regular bowl that collects and holds any liquid. Then, on the run, several inches (6 inches plus) of something organic that in a previous life was some kind of living plant. I like coarse grass hay. Water and droppings filter through it to collect deep down at the surface where the soil meets litter. The birds stay high and dry up on top. The droppings start to work with the litter to start rotting it down. No flies, no smell and no mud. When those do show up, more litter. Later on, it can be all the fall leaves you can find. Wood chips, etc. (be careful about the fresh ground stuff from the guys clearing power lines.........). Some use fresh grass clippings, but if too green and wet, those can mat and turn slimy and nasty. Same with wheat and oat straw and such. Those can mat and turn nasty. Coarse grass hay is a winner.
  3. rrgrassi

    rrgrassi Chirping

    Jun 19, 2010
    Royse City
    For grit, I buy the crushed granite from a local feed store

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