AlbertaChickensEtc

Canadian Poultry Forum Chickens, Eggs, Cattle, Goats, Sheep, Horses, Pets - Across Canada For Sale And Want Ads Forum - Register - Login - And Come On In - Post Your Ad Or Just Chat! image

You are not logged in.

Announcement

A.C.E. Now Has Over THREE THOUSAND Members across Canada! Find Your Province And Say Hello To Us! ALL MEMBERS ARE TO INCLUDE THEIR LOCATION IN THEIR PROFILE .... CLICK ON "PROFILE" ON THE TOP BLUE BAR THEN CLICK ON "PERSONAL" image PRIVATE MESSAGING AND USER LIST WILL NOT BE AVAILABLE TO NEW MEMBERS UNTIL THEIR STATUS BECOMES GROWING MEMBER.

#1 2013-10-10 23:24:44

Herbwalker
Growing Member
From: Alberta Beach / Edmonton
Registered: 2010-07-13
Posts: 99
Website

Deep Litter Method

Tried this for the first time last year and loved it! Didn't have to clean the coop for the whole year. Then took two days to clean it out in August, which gave me 10 to 11 lawn tractor loads of partially composted chicken manure (and wood chips).

I wondered whether others have tried this and what tips and tricks they've learned.


Buckeyes and Americaunas. Hopefully bees again in a year or so.

Offline

 

#2 2013-10-11 00:59:22

heda gobbler
I Love A.C.E.
From: Tatlayoko Lake, BC
Registered: 2009-01-26
Posts: 6874
Website

Re: Deep Litter Method

There are extensive threads on this forum about deep litter, not exactly sure where thought.. maybe do a search.

I use the deep litter method and have yet to clean out my chicken houses since starting it about 4 years ago. I add a bale of shavings every few weeks, just handfuls into the nesting boxes and it gets kicked out and mixed into the floor litter.  Eventually it gets pushed out the pop door into the run so it never accumulates beyond six inches or so in the house.

We are in a very dry part of the world, which might help.


Beltsville Small White Turkeys - White Chantecler chickens and Buckeye chickens
Highland Cattle, Shetland Sheep and Kerry cows.
www.tatlayokofold.com

Offline

 

#3 2013-10-11 04:27:56

Schipperkesue
Administrator
From: Carnwood, Alberta
Registered: 2010-04-08
Posts: 15431

Re: Deep Litter Method

My deep litter consists of wood chips, dirt, straw and peat.  I mix it up and top it off with straw and peat  I never remove it.  Ever.

Peat will neutralize the ammonia.   If it gets stinky I add more peat.  In winter the composting process keeps it warm enough that the chickens can still bathe in it.  I throw grain into it and chicken power keeps it mixed.  When mixed the poops sink to the bottom and compost away.

It works best on a dirt floor, but I also have a couple feet of deep litter working successfully in a concrete floored barn.


Embrace your mistakes....they are life's most meaningful education.

Offline

 

#4 2013-10-12 02:28:35

tiffanh11
Growing Member
From: Buck Lake AB
Registered: 2013-04-06
Posts: 35

Re: Deep Litter Method

Sue.. Peat? u mean peat moss? just wondering i had an awful problem with the amonia this summer.. i was cleaning out coop once a week for a while , altho i did have broilers out there too.. since they have gone it seems much better... but was very humid.. moist and smelly..

Offline

 

#5 2013-10-12 03:29:35

Schipperkesue
Administrator
From: Carnwood, Alberta
Registered: 2010-04-08
Posts: 15431

Re: Deep Litter Method

Yes, Peat moss!  Remember when you made a chemical reaction in grade 5 by mixing vinegar (acid) and baking soda (base/alkali). You got bubbles of carbon dioxide as the two components neutralize.  Well, chicken poop is alkali (ammonia) and peat is acid.  It works the same way but without the bubbles!  The peat also has the added benefit of absorbing moisture.  My barn is VERY dry and if peat moss is not available, guess what I do?  I get out the old sprayer and spray pure vinegar everywhere.  It will also neutralize the ammonia.  Cool, eh?


Embrace your mistakes....they are life's most meaningful education.

Offline

 

#6 2013-10-12 04:10:07

Roots
A.C.E. Addicted
From: Calahoo, Alberta
Registered: 2011-01-11
Posts: 656

Re: Deep Litter Method

Would the deep litter method cause a problems with mites or other critters?


Looking for Legbar hatching eggs and rooster, and rosecomb brown leghorn hatching eggs and rooster.

Offline

 

#7 2013-10-12 04:16:44

Schipperkesue
Administrator
From: Carnwood, Alberta
Registered: 2010-04-08
Posts: 15431

Re: Deep Litter Method

Possibly.  I have birds that are mite magnets- Cornish and Houdans.  But they get regular mite treatment and I don't notice the deep litter makes anything worse.


Embrace your mistakes....they are life's most meaningful education.

Offline

 

#8 2013-10-12 11:53:30

yardbirds
Administrator
From: just north of Yorkton, Sk
Registered: 2011-08-02
Posts: 9510

Re: Deep Litter Method

Schipperkesue wrote:

Yes, Peat moss!  Remember when you made a chemical reaction in grade 5 by mixing vinegar (acid) and baking soda (base/alkali). You got bubbles of carbon dioxide as the two components neutralize.  Well, chicken poop is alkali (ammonia) and peat is acid.  It works the same way but without the bubbles!  The peat also has the added benefit of absorbing moisture.  My barn is VERY dry and if peat moss is not available, guess what I do?  I get out the old sprayer and spray pure vinegar everywhere.  It will also neutralize the ammonia.  Cool, eh?

VERY COOL   Thanks for that tip.  farzmer


Soldier of Tolerance

[ If you consider yourself a "gift" to all you share your life with....I promise you will always give your best.... ]

Offline

 

#9 2013-10-12 16:26:40

heda gobbler
I Love A.C.E.
From: Tatlayoko Lake, BC
Registered: 2009-01-26
Posts: 6874
Website

Re: Deep Litter Method

The chicken house doesn't smell but the turkey house can get fairly nasty. So I get a bale of peat moss, take the plastic off it and put it in the centre of the turkey house.  The turkeys go crazy, they rub on the bale, coo and burble, bathe in it and spread it out really nicely and the smell completely disappears.   Only need to do it once or twice in the winter when they are inside for longer. Mixes nicely with the shavings.


Beltsville Small White Turkeys - White Chantecler chickens and Buckeye chickens
Highland Cattle, Shetland Sheep and Kerry cows.
www.tatlayokofold.com

Offline

 

#10 2013-10-15 23:53:14

Herbwalker
Growing Member
From: Alberta Beach / Edmonton
Registered: 2010-07-13
Posts: 99
Website

Re: Deep Litter Method

Oooo! Thanks for the tip about the peat. I'll try that. We've tried more ventilation, but then it just get's really cold. Saw something a while back about using lime, but from what you describe now I know why it didn't help.

As for mites etc. So far we've had them on the birds when they were in the chicken tractors moving about, but since the deep litter there's been nothing on the birds. We do put DE in the litter though, which is most likely why. I suspect that since DE is also used as an anti clumping agent that it helps the deep litter method that way too.

Has anyone tried putting other stuff in the litter? I've been eyeing the falling leaves of late. Grass clippings make me wonder too.


Buckeyes and Americaunas. Hopefully bees again in a year or so.

Offline

 

#11 2013-10-16 00:04:04

Schipperkesue
Administrator
From: Carnwood, Alberta
Registered: 2010-04-08
Posts: 15431

Re: Deep Litter Method

Leaves worked for me but dried grass clippings became packed and mouldy.


Embrace your mistakes....they are life's most meaningful education.

Offline

 

#12 2013-10-16 01:02:09

Roots
A.C.E. Addicted
From: Calahoo, Alberta
Registered: 2011-01-11
Posts: 656

Re: Deep Litter Method

So, is there a best time of year to start layering.  I wanted to do a good cleanup this weekend or would should I leave it for winter.


Looking for Legbar hatching eggs and rooster, and rosecomb brown leghorn hatching eggs and rooster.

Offline

 

#13 2013-10-16 01:31:24

Schipperkesue
Administrator
From: Carnwood, Alberta
Registered: 2010-04-08
Posts: 15431

Re: Deep Litter Method

I started with a clean coop one fall.  I bought 1 part peat, 1 part straw and 2 parts shavings.   I kept extra peat and straw so I could top it off over the winter.  I added peat when it was smelly and straw when it got dusty.  I threw grain on top when I wanted the chickens to churn it up.  Originally there was about a foot of litter but it compressed to half over the winter, even with the toppings. 

Today, three years later, I have about a foot of nice composted soft soil in the barn which I top up with peat and straw every now and then. 

I am working on deep litter in my shed now.  I started this spring.  I expect even better results than the barn because the shed has a dirt floor and the barn has a concrete floor.


Embrace your mistakes....they are life's most meaningful education.

Offline

 

#14 2013-10-20 20:51:06

Herbwalker
Growing Member
From: Alberta Beach / Edmonton
Registered: 2010-07-13
Posts: 99
Website

Re: Deep Litter Method

Just bought a bale of peat yesterday and put it in the coop. We'll see how it goes. The birds didn't know what to make of it at first.


Buckeyes and Americaunas. Hopefully bees again in a year or so.

Offline

 

#15 2013-10-24 15:18:23

KimberlyK
Growing Member
From: Wetaskiwin County, AB
Registered: 2013-07-15
Posts: 57

Re: Deep Litter Method

Schipperkesue wrote:

I started with a clean coop one fall.  I bought 1 part peat, 1 part straw and 2 parts shavings.   I kept extra peat and straw so I could top it off over the winter.  I added peat when it was smelly and straw when it got dusty.  I threw grain on top when I wanted the chickens to churn it up.  Originally there was about a foot of litter but it compressed to half over the winter, even with the toppings. 

Today, three years later, I have about a foot of nice composted soft soil in the barn which I top up with peat and straw every now and then. 

I am working on deep litter in my shed now.  I started this spring.  I expect even better results than the barn because the shed has a dirt floor and the barn has a concrete floor.

Do you mix the peat, straw and shavings all together? Or do you just mix the straw and peat and leaving the shavings for topping? Or do you layer it, peat/straw/shavings, straw/peat/shavings?

I've read somewhere else that you could just add food grade DE to your shavings. Mix up the current litter, put a fine layer of the DE over the old litter then add your shavings to cover.

Offline

 

Board footer

Powered by FluxBB
Hosted by PunBB-Hosting