What can I do about damp straw in my run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Zoom Zoom, Mar 14, 2015.

  1. Zoom Zoom

    Zoom Zoom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 15, 2014
    Rolla, MO
    I have a covered run attached on one side to a storage building with a concrete floor on the uphill side of the run. It is also wrapped in heavy plastic for the winter. There is about 8" of straw in the run. I was shocked to see at least half of the straw damp this morning and this evening it was almost completely damp. We have water standing in the yard from snow melt and recent rain so I am assuming the dampness is somehow slowly seeping into the straw from the wet ground - water is not running in. Doesn't make sense because it would be seeping uphill. I think I need to do something about the damp straw quick! I was just reading another post where wood chips were suggested. Can someone tell me what size chips should be used. We get aged wood mulch from a local sawmill that is fairly fine and we use it in our garden and flower beds as mulch - the chicks dearly love to dig in my beds! We can get larger chips from the same place which looks to be about 1-2" wide and thick and 4-6" long. If I go with the wood chips, which size should be used? The larger chips don't sound too comfortable to walk on but then I'm not a chicken and a newby at raising chicks at that. Also, I'm concerned that the chicks might get splinters from the wood. Any advice on what I can do will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
  2. Messipaw

    Messipaw Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 3, 2013
    I would throw down some DE or PDZ they are good to dry up dampness.
  3. Bonz

    Bonz Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 6, 2015
    I would remove the straw first off, now if we're talking the run and not the hen house I would put nothing down. In my coop I use pine chips fine or large, I change it out every other month, ammonia build is hard on your birds.
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Take the plastic off the run walls for some air circulation,
    then turn the straw over a couple times a day to help it dry...the chickens should help with this.

    Or remove at least some of the straw from the run, I would not add any wood chips to it unless they are very, very dry.

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