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What do you do with your patch of grass when you move the coop? New chicken keeper here!

(17 Posts)
Janus Wed 26-Aug-09 16:40:31

Hello. We have just got 3 chickens, about 2 weeks ago now. I have a cube which is fab and means I can wheel them around the garden when their patch is starting to look a little worn, seems to be about every 3-4 days. They do free-range too when I'm out pottering in the garden, so about an hour or so a day. However, when I move the cube the patch left is a little poo-ridden and I have 3 kids, one of which is 1 and still crawling and so I need to know what to do!! I have hosed it off but that seems to just move the poo around but not get rid of it. Tried mowing over it but that doesn't seem to get much either. This is probably so obvious but what do you do, or do you just leave it and it goes into the ground itself in a few days? I know I'm being thick but please help!!

southeastastra Wed 26-Aug-09 16:42:26

not the same probably but i rake the area my rabbit has pooed in though they probably have different shaped poos to chickens.

WriggleJiggle Wed 14-Oct-09 06:23:31

poo tends to disappear quite quickly in the rain I think. You could try hosing it down a bit?

ChasingSquirrels Sat 17-Oct-09 16:00:41

rake it up and put into the compost?

TheDevilEatsBabies Sat 17-Oct-09 16:20:12

our run doesn't have grass in at all, so we just scoop up the poo every day or so with a fire shovel.
when they go out onto the grass we just leave it there. it all goes into the goodness of the soil.

FlightAttendant Sat 17-Oct-09 18:49:56

I was going to ask actually if you have to put the run on grass, or earth will do?

We are waiting for our big patch at the end to grow, have seeded it with grass but actually am wondering if we could jsut let them on the mud, with maybe some straw etc.

I am not sure whether they need grass to eat or not.

Sorry about hijack!

madlentileater Sat 17-Oct-09 21:30:28

the mud can get terrible in the winter, like the tranches.
bark chippings are good.

bramblebooks Sat 17-Oct-09 21:39:33

My cube is on a permanent area. I put hardwood chips from b@&q inside for them to furtle in and top them up as necessary. I rake it over and put stalosan on it every couple of weeks. We've added little branches for perches, which they love.

The run is covered with a shower curtain held down with bungee cords, keeps them nice and dry.

FlightAttendant Sun 18-Oct-09 06:57:05

Thankyou, that's v helpful.

I think I will somehow have to keep moving the ark around, I didn't buy the ultra pricey wheels system and there is only one of me! Might try and make some contraption.

ProfYaffle Sun 18-Oct-09 08:07:17

Our run is on a paving stones, we put hemcore over it. In the winter I put plastic sheeting over the top of the run to keep the worst of the rain off. We clear out the run about every week. Most days they're allowed out into the garden for a few hours and when I put them back in I go around with the trowel picking up the poo and I hose down the patio (only takes 5 mins as the garden is tiny)

Last winter the chickens managed to reduce our lawn to a mud patch but it recovered really quickly in the spring.

Well rotted chicken poo is good for the garden but fresh is a bit strong. Top tip, don't put fresh chicken poo around growing onions - they get breath takingly strong!

MitchyInge Sun 18-Oct-09 11:55:17

I shuffle my ark around singlehandedly too flightattendant - it's a 2 person job really but I sort of shift one end, then the other and so on until it's on a fresh patch

I reseed any bare bits and water them well, it will never be a lawn again but I'd rather have the eggs (not that we've had any for a few days )

as for poo it is almost always where they roost in their house above the run - sometimes a little bit in the nesting box - so I just scoop it out and put it in the compost, as quickly as I can because the dog finds it a great delicacy hmm

FlightAttendant Sun 18-Oct-09 11:57:30

That's good Mitchy. Thanks. I wonder now if there is much point waiting for the grass to grow...if it's just going to end up a muddy mess anyway!! smile

I got a big paddock sized bag of grass seed the other week so plenty left for re-seeding...not got our chooks yet, was going to get some ex batts but apparently none available till spring.

MitchyInge Sun 18-Oct-09 12:01:30

Oh spring is AGES away

FlightAttendant Sun 18-Oct-09 13:40:52

I knowwww sad

might get some somewhere else actually, seeing how the bunnies settle in first I think. It is starting to feel like the ark smile

MitchyInge Sun 18-Oct-09 14:05:56

bet the ex-batts are worth the wait though, mine took a while to materialise (although I wasn't actively looking, the whole thing was a 'cosmic ordering' exercise!) but it's amazing to see them so full feathered and fluffy now

I think mine are the most beautiful chooks in the world

FlightAttendant Sun 18-Oct-09 18:34:09

I'm sure they are Mitch grin

That's partly what appeals to me -seeing them flourish after such a rubbish life in a cage thing.
Make me weep just to think about it sad

I used to live in a static caravan on a Welsh farm. There were Rhode Islands everywhere, one kept coming into the caravan and crapping all over the floor, she had a glint in her eye that one.

meltedmarsbars Tue 20-Oct-09 23:08:48

FlightAttendant, my coop (an old shed) is on round fencing poles laid on the ground so I just put my shoulder to it and roll it along to reposition it on fresh grass. Then hoick the run up to it and reattach it. I can do it all on my own.

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