Well I’ve wasted a lot of chicken betting and well it’s not expensive you know who likes to waste anything. What I initially started with when I got my chicken with this fake diabetic.
This is from the supply of tractor company. You can get a bale of this for about six bucks. The flake is a bigger piece chunks of wood shavings. this is almost like sticks of gum cut into quarters. it’s about that size
now it works good because it doesn’t take and that’s what a lot of producers that use the type of betting like they’re not getting taking it kind of stays loose it stays fluffy
the bigger pieces don’t allow it to aggregate into chunks for me it was causing a problem because I had all this loose bedding in there then I keep adding on top of the old bedding and I get the little old chickens coming in there and they just want to explore
They want to scratch and they’re just scratching ,scratching, scratching scratching, scratching and all the bedding is going out of the coop not where I want
so I keep putting more and more betting in but the bedding in the coop isn’t actually accumulating. it’s all coming out the exit way where they go out during the day and that’s resulting in a lot of wasted bedding
so a few months back I ended up switching to the fine size bedding now this is also from the supply of tractor company and this is a much finer bedding.
this is more like you take a piece of gum and you put it through a paper shredder. it’s a lot finer what define this allows it to do is just compress down into cakes.
some people don’t like that but I like it because then what happens the chickens walk on it with all the manure , it’s pressing it down in the cakes. it kind of becomes a more dense mat and then the chickens are scratching and it’s just not flying everywhere and more of its staying in the coop
so I’m getting more use out of the bedding than I’m actually putting down versus this Plake betting which I’m not getting the full use of
I’m more or less getting rid of a lot of it composting a lot of it at the end of the day before it’s fully the news so I’m trying to save a little bit of money here and ultimately go with a better products it works for me in my situation in the fine has really been it since I’ve switched to find a lot more betting staying in the coop where I want it then flying out the door
but this is where it gets exciting because I’m actually trying a new product for betting and it’s not wood shavings at all if something you probably wouldn’t even expect so this is the new product that I’m going to be trying for betting what is it regular old garden-variety Pete mark now why what do you want to use peat moss
well there’s a few reasons why you’d actually want to do it the ideal bedding that I’ve read about from a lot of sources out of the bastard poultry industry is actually peat moss
because it’s fine it holds a lot of moisture, it can compress. it’s sterile which is something you want you don’t want to be a vector of disease
and a lot of people really like it for bedding. it’s kind of expensive. This is about six cubic feet of expanded pee compares with one of these bags right here of the flake style bedding. This expands out to 5.5 cubic feet as well so let’s call them now this 5.5 cubic feet of fine bedding here from the supply attractor company only cost about five or six dollars a bale
this swagman peat moss at my commercial garden supplier around here this costs about 17 dollars. it’s about three times as expensive so given that why would you use it now
one case would be it birds where your livelihood if you were raising a bunch of chicks pastured poultry and you’re having a lot of problems with birds dying in the brooder and you were tracing that down to manure buildup or manure load something like that
well then maybe I could be the case for justifying going to an all peat-based bedding the cost there is worth it because you’re trying to produce adult Birds that you can later sell
and if they’re dying in the brooder ,that’s no good so if you can cut down death in the breeder by using something like this then it justifies the cost
but for me again this was hobby level. I’m not in a commercial level so what’s the justification for using this well . this is where we need to kind of zoom round now and look at the total usage of this event because one portion of this betting’s life is spent inside the coop the other portion of this bedding’s life
and the decomposes is in the garden vent because what else really do with all my used bedding as I take it and spread it out on my garden beds, put a layer of compost over it and then just plant a new cover crop on top of it
it works really well some people may be thinking oh my god all that wood what about all the nitrogen lock up. that’s not good well I’ve never had a problem with that and I’m just planting cover crops on it
a lot of which has nitrogen fixers in it things like peas and Bella beans so I’ve never had a problem with it and the chickens are just grazing it so I’m not too worried if I get the optimum cover crop or not but I’m really thankful to have
the organic matter that they use bedding adds to the soil so knowing that all my use bedding goes out into my garden beds here what I want to do is start introducing some manure inoculated peat into my garden beds I can use peat to break up some of the Clay’s that I have in my soil they’re a little clay more clay than I would want which has its goods and has its pads but I want to loosen it up a little bit one way to do that is to add organic matter in it and one of the pieces of organic matter
I want to add into it our peat is beep and so my thinking is by using peat is a portion of the bedding that I use in my coop it’s a way for me to start getting peed into my bed
and it’s really peat plus nutrients. There will be some bioactive biological activity happening on the peat from the manure and there will be some actual nutrients from the manure in the peas so it’s not just going in its sterile peat
so how I’m going to play this is about one-third of the total bedding that we’ll be putting in my coop will be pee . I’m going to try this for a while see how it works the other 2/3 will be the fine bedding from by a tractor company
that way I can save costs get the benefit of Pete in the process so here we are the first test introduction of Pete into the tube just a light dusting all over the existing bedding. I also put some in the nesting boxes up there.
it’s pretty clear from doing this a bale of peat would go a long ways unless you’re adding peat is your primary bedding source it’s going to go a long ways so they cost factor in here being three times as expensive might not be that big of an issue
The big question will come down to .. does this actually add anything or is this just a waste of time and money and I’m okay admitting that it might be that but every slant give it a try test it out first
this is really an experiment I can’t say how well it’s worked in the past because I haven’t done it in the past but I have read a lot of pasture poultry producers do use peas for bedding so this isn’t some exotic crazy idea that came out of my head
it’s actually something that came out of the pasture poultry industry I’m giving it a try to see how it works.