Wood chips in the run?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by mattycal, Apr 22, 2009.

  1. mattycal

    mattycal New Egg

    Apr 20, 2009
    Parts of my run are bare dirt and get a bit soggy in the heavy rains.
    Would spreading a layer of woodchips over those areas be bogus for the chickens?
    I just wonder how their feet would hold up with those chips. Perhaps they would do well, but perhaps it would be a problem for them. Any suggestions?

    Thanks all,

  2. flopshot

    flopshot Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 17, 2009
    i would be concerned with where the chips came from. often they are contaminated with disease, insects or insecticides. if your sure of the quality i see no problem.
  3. Teach97

    Teach97 Bantam Addict

    Nov 12, 2008
    Hooker, OK
    wood chips aren't going to solve soggy problems...that would be a drainage issue...build it up or redirect water...they do great on chips though
  4. ~*Sweet Cheeks*~

    ~*Sweet Cheeks*~ Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2009
    Medford, Oregon
    I have my chicks in an unused horse stall turned chicken coop that sits in the paddock I made for my horses. I have horible clay that doesn't drain and you know how much it rains in the Pacific NW.

    Anyway, when I had horses in there, the clay swallowed up all 10" of pea gravel I had spread by hand (two dump trucks full).

    Couldn't afford to buy more gravel so I spotted an ad on Craigslist for FREE wood chips - delivered. YAHOO!!!!

    The tree trimming company who placed the ad could no longer take their chipped trees for free to composting place but had to pay the landfill because they had some douglas fir needles.

    When they worked in my area, they would swing by and drop off piles of wood chips.

    Long story short - the wood chips are 10-15' deep and stop the sogginess. Some grass has grown up in patches in the year since speading the bark chips. It is well compacted from the horses.

    Good luck with you.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2009
  5. Anny

    Anny Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 24, 2008
    Detroit Michigan
    adding sand to the run will allow rain water to drain from the soil better. And give the chickens dust bathing spots.
  6. ~*Sweet Cheeks*~

    ~*Sweet Cheeks*~ Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2009
    Medford, Oregon
    My chicks made their own dust bath area in the coop where they dug down to the left over saw dust I spread on top of the rubber horse mats that I then put down a layer of shavings.

    Since they chose that spot, I added a mixture of peat moss and ashes from the wood stove. They love it.

    If I had sand in the run it would be wet sand except for 3 months in the summer when things finally dry out from all the rain.
  7. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Short answer: yes, particularly as a temporary rather than permanent fix.

    Longer answer: see my Mud page, link in .sig below.

    Have fun, good luck,


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