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Dom T

Wood chippings and hygiene

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Bonjour! Our chooks (bantums) have a soil floor, we put some wood chipping down the other day to keep it dryer, the run has a roof on so the chippings were a little trivial.

The pros are that the chippings looks great, the cons, I think are that I used to be able to sweep the poop out everyday because I could see it however now with the chippings I can't see any.

So my question is are the chippings hygienic? Can I just leave the chippings and if so for how long, looking back on previous posts I saw answers from change every month to every year. 

Merci xx 

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I think this is a bit down to personal preference. It can be difficult to have wood chip straight onto the ground as it can just get mixed into a big muddy mess. Most people put concrete slabs down first and then put woodchip on top. If you can keep it mostly dry you might be OK though.

How often you change the woodchip probably depends on whether or not you take the poo out. I go in with a small spade and take out all the poo I can see at least every week (every 2 days at the moment because they are shut in due to bird flu), and I only replace the woodchip once a year or less.

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We put down a strong plastic mesh first which helps prevent the chip going into the soil and ratsor foxes digging through. I do a regular poo pick but once a week hose it all down and sprinkle with something like stalosan. The chip seems to disappear over time as it breaks down so never felt the need to replace it all but then that could depend on the number of chickens and density.

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