cleaning coop question

beeliz(2)July 11, 2009

I'm 30 weeks pregnant and I have 4 hens and 2 female ducks that live together in a gazebo transformed into a coop. It's a large coop,has adequate ventilation,and I don't keep their food in there with them to prevent mice and other critters from going in...I keep water for the hens on a shelf where only they can get to,and not the ducks to prevent too much wettness.(messy ducks!)the ducks pond is outside in their run..

And the food for everyone is in another shed completely where they get at all day till dusk.

here's my question now,,,I'm doing a deep litter concept to clean the coop...it's fairly deep wood shavings,,every morning after I let them out,i scoop out everyones droppings,including the ducks ,which is getting harder the larger my belly gets!LOL

is this a good system? will it keep ok till fall when I can physically empty out all the shavings then add new for the winter? I have a pregnancy complication and I'm on partial bedrest so I can't do a whole lot right now till after the baby comes. I'm hoping that It is a good enough system to keep things under control,,I haven't seen mites ect,I think because there's no wild birds going in there to eat their food.

Please let me know what you all think,,thanks :)

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tasymo

My coop has "deep litter" and I do not remove their droppings at all. I just and toss fresh wood shavings and sprinkle with DE occasionally. I'll empty the litter and start over once or twice a year. My coop isn't smelly, even on the hottest days (it actually smells like aspen shavings). My Girls kind of mix it up when they scratch around in there, and the wood shavings seem to absorb the moisture from the droppings. It's my understanding that the decomposing litter will actually help to keep the coop warmer in the Winter. Sounds to me like you're working harder than you need too. I don't have ducks, so I can't say how that might make a difference.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2009 at 10:51PM
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lonewillowlady

Decomposing litter may keep it warm, but it attracts mites and other insects that can jeopardize the health of your birds.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 2:36AM
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tasymo

Thats what the DE (diathomaseous earth) is for. So far, no bugs of any kind...

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 10:20AM
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beeliz(2)

hmm,,I don't put DE casue it's dangerous I was told to breathe in when you're pregnant..so I sprinkle someorganic nice smelling powdery stuff to keep things dry and odor free.
so far so good..thanks for your replies.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 11:37AM
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laturcotte1

The keys are shavings and doggie pooper scoopers! I have a scooper for each area chicken coop, goose house, back yard for the 5 dogs.

I use shaving for all the animals (goats, horse, geese, chickens). It is much easier to clean than hay, the dropping can be easily seen and scooped. It's cheaper and covers a larger space, it acts like a sponge and absorbs all liquid then you scoop. I work full time and to keep the flies under control I have to scoop before work everyday, sooo easy and stays clean smelling.

Of course the geese and chickens have nests of hay which I clean out once a week also.

When the chickens and geese (housed separately) poop or wet I scoop it up with one of those doggie pooper scoopers, drop it into a trash barrel with cover. About once every two weeks I take the barrels and dump it into the compost pile. In the winter I put trash bags into the barrels and put out for the trash. I am unable to get to the compost pile due to snow.

When I change the nests (hay) I sprinkle underneath very lightly with sevendust for mites, I also add a little to their dusting area.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2009 at 7:27PM
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