View Full Version : Smelly Chicken Run
02-21-2009, 03:52 PM
Can I put anything down on the ground of my run to neutralize the smell... All the grass is gone and sometimes it really stinks... I know that once summer comes it will really smell bad...
Thanks for the advise...
02-21-2009, 04:15 PM
I have a run that is about 100' by 100'. I have noticed a smell recently on the warm days. Not sure if it is the run, or the dead rats under the coop that I poisoned last fall. I have one area that is near the coop that is now hard packed almost like concrete. Due to the weather and rain, and 35 chicken feet packing it, it looks like I had it paved. This is also where I noticed the smell. I don't think the soil can breathe if you know what I mean. I am going to get some lime and till up that whole area and work the lime in. The chickens should enjoy some loose fresh gravel to scratch in. -Dan
02-21-2009, 05:58 PM
At this point in time, all I know is that the outside run contains frozen chicken poop. The artistic side of me sees it as pebbles. I'm sure the smell will spread when it thaws, but, until then, I can do nothing about it.
It is a concern, yes. I'll not worry about it until the temperatures rise above 38 degrees f.
Dig it up, put down fresh sand. That's all I know to do. Oh, and hope the neighbors don't get a whiff.
02-21-2009, 09:44 PM
How big is your run? You can always lay shavings or straw and then clean it up periodically to remove the manure. But, you should really rotate your run if you can. Soil in the run will "sweeten" if you till it up and plant it with a cover crop or grass. To do that you need to move the chickens.
You can use lime, but that will counteract the acidity of the manure without recycling it, the way tilling and planting will.
If you can't rotate your run, all you can do is remove manure periodically and cover up the smell with bedding. I know some of my neighbors have never moved their chicken yards in 30 years. I almost doubt that anything will ever grow there again. I hate the look and smell of an old chicken run, and it isn't healthy for the chickens, either.
02-22-2009, 06:28 AM
I have no idea on the ratio you must use, but I do know you must be careful with the lime. It can burn! Dan, if you are going to till it, best to move the chickens til it's done - and you should wear a mask and gloves. It is really caustic. It will do the job, but the ratio must be right. I just wish I could tell you what it is.
We used to use it (and sometimes still do) with the horses. But again you must be careful for their feet.
There is another product I had started buying.... it's out in the barn right now but I will make note of it and post it for you. It has a wonderful eucalyptic smell, is not toxic, and is a wonderful deoderizer for barns. Sirrocco or something like that.
02-22-2009, 11:51 AM
I can't bring myself to pick up poop from cats and dogs, and that's why I don't have them.
But poop from vegetarian (mostly) animals does not bother me. I get a plastic bag and fill it up, and throw it in the garbage. Sometimes I use a scooper or sometimes I put on those plastic recyclable gloves and pick it up by hand.
Does not work if it rains, but we no longer have a rainy season in California (three weeks of rain in the whole Winter).
Straw works very well to control the smell. The first thing my chickens do when I lay straw in the coop is try to see what is under it and they throw the straw all over the run in the process. So I don't have to cover the run myself I guess.
02-22-2009, 12:23 PM
Glad I read this post because I had planned on using hydrated lime if my run got stinking. I wasnt aware if it was toxic to chickens and would like to hear more about it. Plucker
02-22-2009, 03:37 PM
There is stuff called Sweet PDZ.. but that neutralized amonia in horse urine.. so they say, I still smell those muck puddles they pee into.
The first thing I noticed was that the smell of the chicken mash I am now buying briefly reminded me of Mc Donalds fast food. Then I noticed that the girl's yard stinks of chicken poop like the smell of the mash. They smell like what they are eating!!
The smell now is QUITE, QUITE horrible, I am going to go back to what I used before. The stench from 2 hens is amazing. If you have more, poor you!
How does the smell of the mash smell?
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