Sand Run Stinks! Help

Alte Vogel

8 Years
May 18, 2011
S.E. Alabama
I have a terrible smell in my run.
It is not pooh. I am a neat freak so I clean the sand run about every other day. I think the problem is the rain we recently got. I thank God for the rain. We really needed it here in south Alabama. I think the smell is coming from feed. I have five approx. 8 week old chicks. They seem to waste as much on the ground as they eat. I think that since the sand is damp/wet that the wasted feed has soured. I am new to chickens so I don't know how to handle this. I removed a bunch of sand around the feeder yesterday but that is not a practical way to deal with it. Any suggestions would be deeply appreciated.

Thank you all!!! Love this web site!
If you think its the feed then try raising the feeder up higher on a couple of bricks or a cement block so they cant scratch it out. Other people have suggested stall dry (I think thats what it is called) from feed store. It dries out the sand and the smell.
I also think is the feed. I have a sand run and had the same odor issue when it rained. Luckily I free range them so I just created a feed station outside the run and the smell disappeared.
I know EXACTLY the smell you're talking about--rotten feed. It is totally gross, AND if your chickens eat it, they can become seriously ill. That's why I now keep food only in the coop, never in the run. I tried different feeders and such, but it always got spilled, maybe just a little bit at a time, and eventually it would get damp and then OH THE HORROR!
Soooo putrid!

I would literally have to scrape down to the dirt a layer of yucky feed.

So, no more feed outside. Water outside, feed in the coop.

It will solve all your problems.
I agree with just having their feed be in the coop. I scoop the poop from my sand run a couple times a day-and use the Sweet PDZ daily-no smell.

It does smell a little when it rains, because we didn't make the overhang large enough to cover the run-but I rake it then to help it dry out faster.
after a good rain, i use a garden rake to stir things up. Sprinkler some wood shavings and stall dry/ DE for smell. works fine for me.
Thanks for posting and the replies. Since we've had our girls, it has not rained (I'm in Texas). So, I'll go ahead and move the food *inside* the coop. Even with the feeder suspended up to their chests, they do make an awful mess.

Heck, moving the food up there might even entice them to hang out in the coop some. I've only ever seen them in the run. Feels like we wasted a bunch of time building a home they turn their beaks up at!
I am also in Texas and the coop and run has yet to see rain in the last 4 months. I kind of figured it would be better to have the food in the run so the poop won't accumulate as quickly in the coop. My feeder hangs under one side of the coop in the middle of the run. I'm fairly certain only those really gusty storms will be able to get the food wet but now I'm thinking it might be better to have the food in the coop instead because they never go in there unless it's time for bed. I don't want to smell any rotten food, especially since we're in a neighborhood with neighbors in close proximity.

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