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What should I put on the ground of my uncovered chicken run? Its getting muddy and on a slight slop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ranchchick389, Feb 10, 2015.

  1. ranchchick389

    ranchchick389 In the Brooder

    Oct 29, 2014
    Portland, TN
    I'm not sure what I should use for my chicken run. Right now its just dirt and grass. It gets muddy at times. I thought of using sand but what kind of sand is best? Would hay be a bad idea since its not covered? Any ideas would be great!
  2. Nupe

    Nupe Songster

    Jun 13, 2014
    In the summer, I use grass clippings. In the winter I use pine shavings. My run is on a decent slope so as the chickens scratch and it rains, the bedding gets pushed to the low end. A couple of times a week and right before I know it will rain, I'll take the rake and spread it back out. As the old bedding decays, I just put new on top.

    This seems beneficial in many ways. It pretty much eliminates any poopy foot problems. I give my girls fodder so the sprouts they miss or bury will continue to grow in the bedding to be found later when they scratch or I spread it back out. When it rains, worms and bugs get the bright idea that the bedding is somehow a safe place to be. What a delicious mistake! [​IMG]Lastly, my veggie garden is next to the coop/run on the low end of the slope. I don't have to worry so much about fertilizer.
    1 person likes this.
  3. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Free Ranging

    Apr 6, 2014
    Melrose Park Illinois
    You don't say how large of area you have. My suggestion is to put sand in a section of the run and see how it works for you. Use coarse sand , It also provides grit chicks might decide to pick up. And in another corner of run place some hay or straw. See how that works for you. During summer, I put my grass clippings into my run area. This keeps area clean and mud free as well as provides opportunity for chicks to endlessly scratch through. [​IMG]
    1 person likes this.
  4. RonP

    RonP Crowing

    Do a search on "deep litter".

    I started my run with 18" deep of free wood chips from a local trimmer.
    1 person likes this.
  5. ranchchick389

    ranchchick389 In the Brooder

    Oct 29, 2014
    Portland, TN
    Thank you so much for the ideas! My run is about 12x12. I have 8 chickens
  6. Birdmanfrom

    Birdmanfrom In the Brooder

    May 20, 2013
    If you've got a lumber mill near you use saw dust and or chips...there is no better!

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