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When we were still in the raining season, I would open the window (yes the window) to where the chickens are, and it definitely smelled like a chicken coop. Because we don’t exactly have acreage here, it has been necessary to try to keep the neighbors happy. To keep our neighborly air, I decided it was time to get out and clean the coop and the run that the laying hens hang out in.
This is a bigger project than it sounds like. Not only am I dealing with massive amounts of chicken poop from several batches of chickens, but there is no way to get a wheel barrow into the run to clean it out. I actually had to deconstruct the back side of the chicken coop to get a wheel barrow out far enough to get the soiled shavings out.
After I pulled out three wheelbarrows full of shavings, I spread the rest of the shavings out. I have decided to deep litter the run, so I will just throw a new bale of shavings out into the run every month or so. It is fairly inexpensive, and it keeps the really dirty stuff down deep so that it can decompose. It also has the nice side effect of not upsetting the neighbors because of the smell. As an additional bonus, I threw down a bunch of baking soda in the run so that it could work to neutralize any smell I may have dug up.
I then moved to the inside of the chicken coop and I was pulling up 2 inch thick dried chunks of chicken poop. I think it will work well to up the nitrogen content in my compost pile, that is for sure. Jared thinks I should find a burlap bag supplier and bag it up as compost. I could sell a 50 pound bag of it for $10. The truth is that I have WAY too much chicken compost now, and I sure hope that I have an easy time breaking it all down into garden material because that is what I need now, not chicken poop.
I accomplished my mission. The neighbors should be happy and the chickens should be happy. I look forward to the next cleaning in 3 months (please note the sarcasm).