A few days ago I posted the videos the bottom of my page. In it I talk a little about using the space you have. I get a lot of questions about how to deal with mud and gross conditions in your run or chicken coop during the fall and winter.
I do free range most of my birds. (Now let me just state that I am Npip certified. In my state you can not "free range", they must be confined. Total bologna if you ask me but whatever! So I made a 2 acre pen. the still go where they want and have access to forage in pastures, wooded areas, and compost.) I say "most" because we do have a ton of hawks here. Its awful! so I recently made a small covered area for my young birds to go until they are to large to carry off! I also purchased a few Cornish cross broilers a few weeks ago. I put them in as well. At 50 cents a piece I couldn't pass it up. winter is coming and my freezer has plenty of room.
These broilers are doing great!!! I do plan on making a blog post about raising the broilers since this was my first round! So look for that soon! The little area they are in however is getting gross fast! So I needed an easy solution. I have access to all the wood chips I could ever need, my husband owns a tree service, so it was an easy choice! I have large piles all over for several reasons anyway. I use them in pathways, gardens, herb and berry patches. I also use them under my quail cages. it keeps the smell down, and I can stir or shovel them out when needed. I never need to, the chickens can access it and dig it out for me. So typically I add a few scoops a week and im good to go.
This area was one I just thew up! chicken wire around a house I use. I have a pallet on a fence post I use for a gate. then its covered wit a shade cloth I use for the KuneKunes during the summer Fast and easy! I can fit the wheel barrel right in my gate so a few loads of wood chips and I was good to go! it only took a few minutes to put our about a 2 inch layer. My wood chips have some leaves in them so ill let that dry for a few days or even a week. Then ill add a few more wheel barrel loads and stir or add more when needed! Easy as that. Below is a photo taken after I spied out some wood chips in the middle. Such a difference.
I do mention in the video that I do pull from the outside of the pile to avoid any mold from leaves in the pile. when im don't in the area I can simply spread the chips that are left out or rake them up and use them in my garden.
If I missed anything please comment with your questions!