The Poop, On Chicken Poop

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Redcatcher, Jun 21, 2010.

  1. Redcatcher

    Redcatcher Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2010
    At My Desk!
    I was wondering if anyone knows why chickens have two distinct types of poop. Now, I am not referring to the white or clear parts that is urea, or the light green, but every so often they drop a brown, gelatinous goo that is absolutely foul. It is the perfect substance for tracking through and it smears all over everything. Especially chicks. It seems one is never aware that a chick has tracked through it until AFTER they have handled the chick. Even hand washing does not get thoroughly get rid of the odor. It makes absolutely no difference what is in their diets and they all do it. Fortunately not all that often, maybe one out of 10 poops (not that I go around counting).
     
  2. nateritz

    nateritz New Egg

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    Feb 22, 2010
    Great question Paul S. I have the exact same problem and was just going to post the same question. Looking forward to receiving help from all you experts out there.
     
  3. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    DFW
    From the Cornell Handbook of Bird Biology:

    "The ...ceca...are a pair of pouches extending from the junction between the small and large intestines. They function in digestion by holding material long enough for bacterial action to further break it down. They then release the material into the large intestine for absorption of whatever nutrients have been made available fy the bacteria."

    Doves and parrots don't have ceca, herons only have one, and there are some other variations in species. Birds that browse on grass tend to have longer ceca. Be grateful you don't have an ostrich or turkey: the Cornell Handbook says they have very long ceca! Imagine the cecal poops from them!
     
  4. NeeleysAVLChicks

    NeeleysAVLChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2009
    Leicester, NC
  5. TipsyDog

    TipsyDog Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2009
    Aregua, Paraguay
    That's what I call the "chocolate pudding poop". I HATE that stuff! It's so hard to clean up and yes, it's the only kind of poop my girls leave at the back door. [​IMG]
     
  6. Redcatcher

    Redcatcher Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2010
    At My Desk!
    Thanks for the information. I suppose that I could have looked it up myself but would not have known where to start. It does not appear that they expel this material while sleeping or roosting. I have a large roo that likes to roost with his rear hanging over a bucket and I have never once found these droppings in there in the morning.
     
  7. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    DFW
    Mine seem to do them with some frequency first thing in the morning before they come off the roost. What I find helps is to scoop a little of the sand I use in my coop and runs onto the cecal poop to coat it and dry it out. That somewhat takes care of the smell and makes it easier to remove.

    Last winter when I was bringing my small bantams into the garage on freezing nights, our favorite hen managed to stand under another chicken just as it was letting go of a cecal poop. Splat, right on her back. It matted down her feathers, and I was worried because it was going to be a pretty cold winter day, so I brought her inside, spot cleaned her with some warm water and a cloth, blew dry her a little on low setting, and set her in a cage indoors to finish drying. Neither of us much enjoyed the procedure.
     

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