Deep litter system with chooks

Discussion in 'Breeding, Raising, Feeding and Caring for Animals' started by katsparrow, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. katsparrow

    katsparrow Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2009
    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I am after some info or advice if anyone can help me. I currently am using my chook run as a deep litter system. They are also free range and they spend at least half the day out in the garden. I put straw in the litter system along with any green waste and kitchen waste. I also put some lime in too to help the chooks with lice control. So I have a few questions:
    1. I am wondering how long I should leave it before I rake it out
    2. Once I have racked it out, I am going to put it in a pile to rot down. Any ideas about how long I should do this before I put it on the garden?
    Thanks.
     
  2. gardenlen

    gardenlen Group for banned users

    Joined:
    May 14, 2004
    Messages:
    3,464
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    we did similar, we raked it out every 2 to 4 weeks and put it straight on the garden with no worries. it's called value adding.

    len
     
  3. katsparrow

    katsparrow Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2009
    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    So it doesn't matter about the chook manure not rotting down then before going on the garden?
     
  4. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    2,456
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    Farm manager/ educator
    Location:
    Hunter Valley New South Wales
    Home Page:
    Climate:
    warm temperate - some frost - changing every year
    bump I want to comment later
     
  5. Speedy

    Speedy Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Messages:
    233
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    It wont matter if you put it straight on the garden,
    it just depends on what you want it to do ,
    and what type of garden you want to put it on.

    Without wanting to make a bigdeal out of it,
    if it was to go to a vege patch,
    I'd use it as a composting ingredient with heaps of weeds and stuff
    In this case it would be fine to dig it into the soil once it's cooled and matured.

    If you dont have tim, patience or energy for composting,
    just throw it down as mulch under some orchard trees you'd like to feed.
    It all depends on how you want to manage your garden .

    I reckon an wheelbarrow load of carefully made compost is more
    valuable than an trailer load of raw ,uncomposted OM.
    ...from the biological and nutrient release point of view anyway. ;-)
     
  6. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    2,456
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    Farm manager/ educator
    Location:
    Hunter Valley New South Wales
    Home Page:
    Climate:
    warm temperate - some frost - changing every year
    I used to run a deep litter system and found that with the addition of lime and also the addition of some scratch grain to get the cjhooks to turn the litter over it will be in good condition in 3 to 6 months. You need only to watch for wet spots as a place for lice to breed and of course the build up of broken down manure. If it smells wrong (bad) it is time to clean it out and to add it to a compost heap is a great use for the combination of carbon and nitrogen. If you use the scratch grain then the chooks will tend the decompisition and you may be able to leave the top part of the litter while taking the lower decomposed material for use in the garden but be careful as it could be a bit rich for some plants. Be sure to keep perches clean and dusted with lime and/or sulphur.
     
  7. Aaronj

    Aaronj Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2010
    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I run all my deep litter through the compost pile before putting in the garden, usually 2 times a year. Basically I pitch-fork it out in layers with green plants and horse/cow manure. This might not be necessary but I like to hot compost the chicken manure to make sure all "bad-guys" are dead. Otherwise I sometimes, put a layer out under the fruit trees without composting, especially good around fruiting time for the extra nitrogen boost.
     

Share This Page

-->