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Using Leaves for the Outdoor Run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by mosier, Oct 16, 2008.

  1. mosier

    mosier Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 27, 2007
    Madison, Wisconsin
    Hi all. Can anyone give me advice on if leaves are OK to use for bedding on the ground in an OUTDOOR uncovered run? I have boatloads of leaves (mostly oak & walnut) in my yard that would be lovely to place in the run. However, I am worried about mold. Does anyone have experience with using leaves? Instead of conjectures, I'd really love to hear from people who have tried it....I'm sure some of you have.

    For a little background: Right now the outdoor run is just dirt, I've had chickens for a year and a half and occasionally throw weeds in the run but haven't done anything else. I live in Wisconsin so it is a bit rainy in the fall.

    Here's a photo of my coop: [​IMG]

    Check out my signatures for lots more coop & hen photos.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2008
  2. needmorechickens!

    needmorechickens! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 2, 2008
    West TN
    I use straw but have heard of people using the leaves in their run. One good idea I read about was to bag some leaves up and stack them around the coop for insulation. When it snows you can open a bag and dump it in the run for the chickens to scratch in. Sounds like a good idea to me.
    ~Rebecca
     
  3. ODS-n-ENS FARM

    ODS-n-ENS FARM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 16, 2008
    NH
    I have leaves in my run. The first batch we put in came from the vacum system from the lawn mower. The leaves were chopped up w/bits of grass. My girls LOVED IT! The second batch was whole leaves. Late in the day I sprinkle a little bit of scratch so they can really stir up the leaves(helps keeping them dry). I think the leaves incourage insects/worms wich the girls love to find. Just do not put to many in at once, they did not like it when the leaves where really deep.
     
  4. tvtaber

    tvtaber Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 2, 2007
    Central CA
    We have a build up of eucalyptus leaves in the pen from cleaning up and dumping them in there. They worked on the edges of the pile unltil it was all shredded and sorted, and is now a nice "floor." I second the notion of not piling them too deep, but if you mound them on one end the hens will spread them out for you.
     

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